Monday, April 26, 2010


I always figured it was no big deal to write a story someone else came up with. After all, you were chosen because you had what the producers were looking for, so you should be able to run with it and have fun without the pressure of coming up with a whole plot or the ambiguity of whether or not it would sell.

But now I'm seeing the challenge. I like the story I've been commissioned to write but there are a few things about it that are out of the norm for me. A male protagonist. PG 13. Supernatural elements. It's all doable and I can definitely see this as a film, but I'm having to stretch myself to make it work. It's a great opportunity for me to grow as a writer, although at the moment I'm still just hoping I'm going the right way with this.

Then I came up with this awesome idea for a spec last week that I'm dying to run with - one of those where the scenes just write themselves with very little effort on my part. It's just exactly the kind of story I need to write and could be a good candidate for a sale. My thoughts keep drifting off to this new project while I need to keep them focused on the more challenging piece for the producers. Since I'm still taking this class for work and now my vacation is almost over, I don't have time to do both projects at once.

So I've got to enact some discipline. If I want to get paid I need to write the more difficult piece, no matter how much I want to work on my new story.

Also I really don't want to go back to work. Like really really don't.


  1. Tripp Stryker4:15 PM

    Is this the spec you're going to write in crayon? Because THAT would be fucking awesome! Love that ballsy shit!

  2. Crayon is the new Courier. Everybody's gonna be doing it after I pioneer that shit.

  3. I may have mentioned that I got fired (or replaced, the softer, gentler... fuck, who am I kidding? I was FIRED!) because I couldn't or wouldn't write somebody else's story. Though I tried, I really, really did. Four months wasted...


    That's the trick isn't it? To make sure you can do the thing that they hired you to do? Everybody struggles with that problem--welcome to the club. And the distractions are many.

    PS: notes are forthcoming on that thing you sent me.

  4. Welcome to Hollywood... LOL.


  5. Ugh. Getting fired. Not looking forward to that, although I know it will happen eventually.

    No worries on the notes. I practically threw it at you.

  6. I've always loved the challenge of writing assignments where some of the elements were picked out for me, but those were short things - poems and short stories and short screenplays. A full length screenplay would be harder, I think.

  7. Could you write it on Denny's napkins? I like to say that a great concept can be sold based on scribbling on a couple dirty Denny's paper napkins.

    It's got to be a huge task to improve on something someone else wrote. An admirable achievement if done well.

  8. If you figure out "Didcipline" I would pay you to teach me... Except I just got fired.


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