Please Let Me Win This Contest
Okay, so I promised to tell you the real reason writers enter contests. Yes, it's because we're hoping that it will get us attention and a career. But what's really happening is we're praying our script will do all the work for us.
You see, most writers are introverts. We need to realize that learning our craft and writing that script is half the battle. The other half is selling ourselves. Most people can't even describe themselves so how the hell do you sell yourself?
You'll hear the word "branding" a lot these days. "You have to know your brand." Diablo Cody had this interesting angle. A screenwriter that used to be a stripper. It almost sounds like a movie. I heard a story about a NYC transit worker who sold a spec script. I don't think you have to be a former pimp or an ex-con in order to have a career in Hollywood. You just need to get some balls.
You have to tell everyone you know that you want to be a screenwriter, director or an actor. It can't be a family secret. Don't be afraid to tell your mailman your dreams. The more networking you do, the more chance you have of meeting that one person who can open the door. There's not a person alive who made it on their own. Someone has to give you a shot at some point. Find that person.
Don't hide in your room waiting for the quarterfinals email from that contest. There are creative sites like Facebook specifically for people in our industry. Join them and build a network. Work on a film crew helping someone else make their movie. Haven't you noticed how many famous directors work with the same crew? Remember we talked about writing groups. Well, friends hire friends in Hollywood so why not make some friends.
If you have spent years on your craft, you owe it to yourself to give your dream everything you've got. Break out of your shell!
Next time I'll talk about pitching your script...