Rework? But What if It Already Works? - Complications Ensue
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Monday, October 20, 2008

Beau H writes:
Here's my update from the [XYZZY] Film Festival: First of all, I WON! And I got to meet a lot of cool people, including [Big Muckymuck].

Before I knew I had won, I spotted Big Muckymuck at the BBQ and talked to him. He told me not to tell him the plot of my script, but asked if I had fun writing it. Of course! Then he gave me his assistant's number and asked if I would send her my script so he could read it. OF COURSE!

At the wrap party I talked to Big Honcho, who was hammered. He told me that I needed to play my Big Muckymuck card wisely. "Hold off for a while, rework your script, because you'll only get one read."

I think this was great advice, but here's my dilemma: EITHER I send him the winning script, which takes place in the middle of last season, OR I rework my script to fit this season, as though I were submitting it for a freelance gig. I'm leaning toward the first option because 1) it's more honest, and 2) if he likes my story so much that he wants to use it then he could ask me to update it.
No no no no no no. Rework, rework, rework.

Don't be in such an all-fired hurry. If it's good now, it'll be better later.

This has nothing to do with "honest." You can honestly tell him you reworked it. Everyone likes to hear that you did more work on an already winning script. That suggests you have a good work ethic and you're not precious.

Never wait for people to update something. They won't. They'll just note that it hasn't been updated.

When you're at the point where people are paying you for stuff, it makes sense to wait until you have a contract before you start working. But till then, you should always be ready to pounce on the moment. Never wait for an opportunity to float by. Jump in the river and pull it in with your bare hands.

Oh and -- congratulations on the win!

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2 Comments:

Just echoing Alex's sentiment: congratulations!

By Blogger daveednyc, at 12:27 AM  

I've read Beau's script and if he updates it he'll probably have to lose my favorite joke. :( Oh, well. Maybe he rework it for Oscar.

By Blogger Gnasche, at 6:10 AM  

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