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Friday, June 20, 2014

Q. I am trying to get in touch with Bill Prady and it appears from some Google searches you know him.

I have 6 scripts attached for The Big Bang Theory. They would be 6 of the best episodes ever, and the one entitled [snip] will win an Emmy for Mrs. Cuoco. I implore you to just start reading it, it encompasses everything the Big Bang Theory is about.

I realize you folks hear this a lot, but Chuck and Bill really needs to see these. I have a lot more where those came from and many more ideas.

Wow, so many things wrong with this email!

One, do not send attachments to someone who hasn't asked for them. No one practicing good Internet hygiene will open them.

Two, do not send attachments to someone who hasn't asked for them. It is extremely rude. Ask if someone wants to read your spec, then send if they say it's okay. They might ask you to sign a release. They might not read other people's material. I do not read the material of strangers unless they sign a release and pay me for an evaluation. It's not my job. I'm a writer, not an agent or a producer. I occasionally read scripts of writer friends of mine.

(See, "No, I Will Not Read Your F#@%ing Script" by Josh Olson for only some of the many reasons why.)

Three, Bill Prady does not want to read your Big Bang Theory scripts. Bill Prady has an office full of writers generating Big Bang Theory scripts, based on conversations he's had with them about the specific needs of the show. You, on the outside, do not know what these are. Your scripts will read spectacularly wrong to him, no matter how close you think they are.

If your scripts are really excellent, then send the best one to an agent. If she likes it, she'll ask for a spec of a different show, or possibly a spec pilot. No one wants to read more than one script from a show from you. If she likes your two scripts, she might be able to get you work on another half hour sitcom.

Star Treg:TNG famously bought spec scripts from the Cloud, but I've never heard of another show doing that.

Four, just because I wrote up a talk that Bill Prady gave a few years ago, that makes you think I'm on a script-giving basis with him? Oh, if only. I would indeed give him a script I thought was amazing. My own. My wife's. If I thought he was receptive to more than that, I might give him the occasional script by a friend I think is really funny. I might give him one every, oh, five years. You don't want to wear out your welcome. Generally you get one shot.

A friend of ours from high school, for example, is a big deal agent in a specific market niche. We have never sent him a script, because we didn't have anything we thought was perfect for him. We did not want to waste his time. (As luck would have it, he noticed she'd won her second Writer's Guild Award this year, and emailed her.)

Five, never send someone a whole bunch of scripts. What if they read the worst one first? Send the best one. If they want to read more, trust me, they will ask.

How do you know I even watch Big Bang Theory? How would I know if your spec was good or bad? If you asked me to critique your BBT scripts, I would have to refuse, because I don't know the show well enough to judge them.

Six, no one wants to read your spec script without a release. You know why? Because if we were ever to read your script, and didn't have a release from you, and later on we wrote a script that you, for some reason, thought was full of your stolen ideas, then you might sue. You would almost certainly lose the suit, but it would still cost a month and $5,000 to get the lawsuit thrown out of court. I would rather spend that money on Zinfandel.

So I did not open your attachments, and I have deleted your email.

Good luck, eh?

3 Comments:

Well now WTF am I going to do with all this Naked Josh fanfic?

By Blogger DMc, at 5:50 PM  

Mysterious person who inspired this post: I'll read one of your scripts. I'll even give you feedback. Better be good with a pitch like that, though, or this won't be pretty.

By Blogger Paul William Tenny, at 3:27 AM  

The accompanying note sounds a lot like "Paperback Writer." Surely Macca has better ways to break in, right?

"It's a thousand pages, give or take a few /
I'll be writing more in a week or two /
I can make it longer if you like the style"

By Blogger Kate, at 4:44 PM  

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