Good, Bad, and the Adequate
JJ, I appreciate your candor. I could put on my
cheerleading outfit (although I don't look that good in
it anymore -- or ever did) and try to rah-rah you into
not thinking that way and leap into the air, shouting at
the top of my lungs (why are the top of the lungs louder
than the bottom of the lungs?), "You can do
it! You can do it!" I could tell you to
keep on writing because if you keep at it, one day
you're going to sell your first script! Yaaaaaay!
Let's hear it... for script spirit!
I'm not going to do that, JJ. I'd never do
that. (And not just because I lost my pom-poms.) The hard truth is that you may never
sell a script. Actually, the odds are that you
won't. Now you're probably expecting me to tell
you that shouldn't stop you from continue
screenwriting. I'm not going to say that,
either. And the reason for that is because the
only reason to write screenplays is because
Not because you want to sell them, but
because you want to write them. Oh, it's great to sell
one or more. But don't write screenplays for that
reason. Here's another truth: Many people
who think they can write or think they have written a good
screenplay can't and haven't and, most likely, never
will. A well-crafted screenplay takes a great deal of
discipline and talent. And many just don't have the
talent, and many are not willing to develop the
But -- and I say this not to confuse you --
that doesn't mean they won't sell a screenplay. Bad
screenplays sell. In fact, sometimes it's easier to
sell a bad or just adequate screenplay than it is to sell a
good screenplay. Go figure.
So, in a way, when it comes to selling a
screenplay, there's really no rhyme or reason. That
fact can work in your favor, can free you to just
write. So, if you want to... write a screenplay.
Even a bad one.