Wednesday, August 29, 2012

The Six Types Of Failed Screenwriters

(Formerly known as Deleted For Controversial Material, the post is back because fuck you :p I'm surprised I still have it...)

Has one script, usually a "urban" drama / crime drama or similar inner city potboiler. Loves it like a mother, e.g. won't stop talking about it, and won't do anything to change it no matter how many ways and in how much detail you explain how awful it is.

Let's be clear here: this writer is NOT a racist, sexist, homophobe or xenophobe. The CHARACTERS are. Trouble is, that includes the hero.

Turning your beat sheet into a novel is always a much better idea than writing another screenplay. You take complete control of your vision, in the form of a tome you can publish online, today, for the world to endure. Trouble is, it takes forever, and your sale will be roughly, if you really advertise, about $8. Plus you have to know what dangling participles are, how to use adverbs, where to put punctuation, and other things that won't get you meetings in LA.
So the Lazy Novelist drifts in the netherworld, cranking out 160 page specs with the act 2 break on p 34, packed with thick direction blocks, clumsy formatting and soliloquys on every other page. Concise premise? Likable characters? That's for those hacks in Hollywood the Lazy Novelist never got to be.
Which brings us to the...

Extremely disciplined, fervent student of structure and characterization, and a true movie fan. S/he also studies the business, and follows sales and trades and the inside scoops and lingo…from her/his house in Wisconsin. Or South Dakota. S/he would go indie and film the script on a shoestring, but s/he's really busy with work, kids, sick parents, things like that.
Probably knows the…

Is really excited that s/he won the Tuscaloosa Film Festival script contest. S/he also "placed" or was a quarterfinalist on any other number of other contests where the requirements to place basically involve your script not being written in crayon. There are only two contests in the world where Third Place means anything at all (barely): The Olympics, and Nicholls. And no agents or producers in Hollywood ever ask you what contests you placed in. The Contestant's specs are proof why.

Hey! This isn't funny anymore! :p