Shoe on the Other Foot - Complications Ensue
Complications Ensue:
The Crafty TV and Screenwriting Blog




Baby Name Voyager graphs baby name frequency by decade.

Social Security Administration: Most popular names by year.

Name Trends: Uniquely popular names by year.

Reverse Dictionary Search: "What's that word that means....?"

Facebook Name Trees Match first names with last names.


Archives

April 2004

May 2004

June 2004

July 2004

August 2004

September 2004

October 2004

November 2004

December 2004

January 2005

February 2005

March 2005

April 2005

May 2005

June 2005

July 2005

August 2005

September 2005

October 2005

November 2005

December 2005

January 2006

February 2006

March 2006

April 2006

May 2006

June 2006

July 2006

August 2006

September 2006

October 2006

November 2006

December 2006

January 2007

February 2007

March 2007

April 2007

May 2007

June 2007

July 2007

August 2007

September 2007

October 2007

November 2007

December 2007

January 2008

February 2008

March 2008

April 2008

May 2008

June 2008

July 2008

August 2008

September 2008

October 2008

November 2008

December 2008

January 2009

February 2009

March 2009

April 2009

May 2009

June 2009

July 2009

August 2009

September 2009

October 2009

November 2009

December 2009

January 2010

February 2010

March 2010

April 2010

May 2010

June 2010

July 2010

August 2010

September 2010

October 2010

November 2010

December 2010

January 2011

February 2011

March 2011

April 2011

May 2011

June 2011

July 2011

August 2011

September 2011

October 2011

November 2011

December 2011

January 2012

February 2012

March 2012

April 2012

May 2012

June 2012

July 2012

August 2012

September 2012

October 2012

November 2012

December 2012

January 2013

February 2013

March 2013

April 2013

May 2013

June 2013

July 2013

August 2013

September 2013

October 2013

November 2013

December 2013

January 2014

February 2014

March 2014

April 2014

May 2014

June 2014

July 2014

August 2014

September 2014

October 2014

November 2014

December 2014

 

Monday, January 28, 2008

My pay cable series has been greenlit for more development -- scripts 4, 5 and 6. (I've already turned in the pilot, 2 and 3.) And I've been authorized to put together a small writing room to help break the rest of the season.

It's an interesting experience. I've hired writers before. And I've supervised writers before. But right now, we're looking for two top drama writers -- which means lots of the people I've been looking at have more experience than I do. Some of them are a bit older than me, too.

Suddenly, I understand why people get nervous hiring writers older than they are, because I'm nervous. One doesn't want to be disrespectful, but then one also doesn't want to have to defer to the other writer just because they're older -- or more experienced. It is after all your show.

It was an interesting process, going through the resumes. I kept going back to my own resume to see how it reads. Not all credits help you. I rejected some people with years of experience because their experience was all the same: procedural, procedural, procedural. My show is not a procedural. I'm more interested in someone who's staffed on a procedural, but also written a movie or two, and developed their own comedy pilot.

You want to avoid getting pigeonholed. I've become kind of a comedy writer of late. Unless I only want to get comedy work, I've got to change pace. Fortunately, this series is a metaphysical drama, so it shows range.

I find I don't always absorb credits well past the first page. You want all the impressive stuff on the first page; even better if there is only the one page. So I took off all my less-than-impressive credits. I've written or helped develop or produce some pretty unspectacular movies. Better to write "selected features" and "selected TV" and only include the good stuff, I think: the hit film, the series I co-created, the Head Writer gig, the directors I've written for.

I also find that the people I like wow me in the first five pages of their samples, with fresh, distinct characters and situations. The merely competent establish a situation with stock characters. The fresh writers don't always structure their screenplays well -- the screenplay may not deliver on the promise of the first five -- but if there isn't something distinctive in the first five, there isn't going to be in the rest of the script.

Now we're waiting on network approval for our development budget. Stay tuned!

Labels: , , ,

9 Comments:

But maybe the people with procedural credits are dying to get into something else but nobody will hire them to work on anything else because all their credits are procedural.

By Blogger Emily Blake, at 12:46 PM  

Their agents can put them up for stuff. They can develop half hours and option them to the network and put the optioned series on their resume. There are ways to let people know you're not all about the crime stories and the steady paycheck.

You can, for that matter, turn stuff down if it's going to pigeonhole you. (Or start overcharging for it, which is the more lucrative way to do the same thing.)

By Blogger Alex Epstein, at 12:53 PM  

... and I guess the older writers can invent some kinda time machine...

i kid, i kid...

By Blogger Frank "Dolly" Dillon, at 12:58 PM  

Good luck, Alex. And may the Force be with you.

By Blogger Kelly J. Compeau, at 1:05 PM  

You know how hard I'm hoping....

By Blogger Webs, at 9:43 PM  

Good point about leaving out the not-so-good stuff on a resume. If I had three pages worth of credits, and The Brown Bunny was one of them, I'd leave it off the list. But if I had to mention it so the page didn't look too sparse, I suppose I would. But fortunately, I had nothing to do with it.

Anyway, good luck with the show.

I enjoyed the Crafty book, by the way, and was pleased to discover that this web-log is also readable as a Livejournal syndication feed.

By Blogger Steve, at 5:00 PM  

Best of luck!

By Blogger Piers, at 8:30 AM  

As I read this post I realized that, even with all of the blogs & writing books I've read, I've never seen a writer's resume. Would you mind posting a sample (or your own, if you are so inclined, of course)?

By Blogger Ralphie, at 12:27 PM  

I dont think it is just writers. I have managed salespeople in the past and you wonder if they are better. There is a certain tug at the ego that makes one feel uncomfortable.

In my case, if they are better than me, great. I'd make more money. It's the bad decision that kills us. That's the one who sits around and just talks about old times.

There is no need to defer. In the words of Robert Mitchum as Admiral "Bull" Halsy in "Midway," "When in command, command."

I'll follow your advice as soon as I have a resume.

Great blog first time here! Reading the book now.

By Blogger Matt, at 9:02 PM  

Post a Comment

Back to Complications Ensue main blog page.



This page is powered by Blogger.