Q. I've been out of school for 11 years and have a successful career in marketing. I wouldn't want to start at the bottom again. Would it make sense to change industries but stay in marketing and figure out how to squeeze my way into writing?
It would. It's good to have a day job that gets you close to showbiz, so you get a sense of what people want. And if you're marketing movies, you'll learn what sort of movies the marketers want. The kind of movies the marketers don't
want get made rarely. And If you're a successful marketer, you might even like marketing movies.
My day job was developing and producing movies. I was a pretty good development guy and not a great producer. (I can't talk people out of money they shouldn't be giving me, and that is a crucial producer skill.) I learned a lot about what to write and what not to write. In fact, my experiences in my day job led to my first book as much as my experiences as a writer ever did.
If you're a successful marketer, you stand a much better chance of breaking into marketing than of breaking into writing, just because you have some expertise. But it is equally true that you stand a much better chance of selling your first script if you are marketing movies than if you are marketing widgets.
Labels: this writing life, your career