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Monday, August 28, 2006

Got an email from a producer interested in one of my TV projects. She had some questions for me. I was tempted to email back and answer the questions, but I quickly decided that it would be more fruitful to call back. I want to establish a relationship; I'd never met her. So I called.

Particularly in TV, but in film as well, you're not just selling your material. You're selling yourself. You always want to be selling. That doesn't mean faking; faking will haunt you later. But it does mean letting people know your good points in case they don't already know, or have forgotten, how wonderful you are. You can't depend on your agent to do that for you.

Your work has to be good. But the work is only half of it. Life is short and people want to work with interesting and fun people. Just appearing agreeable doesn't leave much of an impression.

If someone already likes a project of yours, you want to give them additional reasons to want to work with you. I mentioned various projects I've been doing with various people (= credible people like to work with me!). I talked about the Toronto Film Festival parties I've been to (= I'm part of the social whirl!). I discussed networks the project might be right for (= I know who the buyers are, and what they like!). I tried to give a rounded impression of myself as a credible pro tv writer, and also give throw out a few hooks for future conversations.

You can't Always Be Closing because you may not know what you're eventually selling to someone. But you want to turn every chance encounter into a conversation; and you want to turn most conversations into relationships. Always be giving people reasons to give their business to you instead of the next guy, in a positive, efficient way.

2 Comments:

This is a scary concept for me. It's not easy for me to be open and friendly with people I don't know. I hope when the time comes I will suddenly discover a well of charm from which to draw but I'm not sure. (ack! what a crappy metaphor! see how nervous I get??)

By Blogger Dante Kleinberg, at 9:08 PM  

What is the best way to write fighting scenes that have an extensive amount of action in it? And the same goes for love making scenes. How to write it, without directing it, and making it read like a trashy novel?

By Blogger Sam, at 9:30 PM  

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