I’m a Los Angeles Lakers fan. As I’ve followed the team over the past few years, I’ve noticed certain elements need to be present, in a game, for it to be the most engaging and entertaining — the kind that keep me glued to the TV screen. Specifically, there are usually high stakes, intriguing...
Boardwalk Empire creator and showrunner Terence ("Terry") Winter started his hustle with some letterhead, a phone line, and stark determination. Years later, and after a writer-producer gig on The Sopranos, his Boardwalk Empire is racking up big ratings for HBO and big awards for the cast and crew.
Aspirants often think cold-calling, querying, and unsolicited submissions are viable methods for getting an agent. But they're actually a waste of time, energy, and postage. So let's take a look at some methods that work …
In Emmy winner Erik Bork’s work pitching series ideas and writing pilots (and on good days, selling them to networks such as NBC and Fox), he’s learned a few things about what they're looking for, and what makes an idea sellable - as well as what a successful pilot script tends to include...
If screenwriting is not a "calling," if it's just something you've thought about trying when you have some spare time… then I say, "don't bother." Because you will be trampled by hordes of other screenwriters—of all ages—who want it more badly, and are willing to do more to get it, than you do.
This is not an industry, or a career, where work can be half-assed. If you choose not to treat this like a professional career, YOU WILL NOT HAVE A PROFESSIONAL CAREER.
A TV writer's job is NOT to dream up the best stories possible. It's to dream up the best stories possible within the creative and practical confines of the show.
I'm not saying every screenwriter must live in Los Angeles. I'm saying every TELEVISION writer must live in Los Angeles. Until you bite the bullet and move, you WILL NOT BREAK INTO TV.
The absolute best way to network in the industry... is to GET A JOB IN THE INDUSTRY. If you're not working in the industry, you stand almost no chance of breaking in.
When people are super-proprietary over ideas they pitch, and they think it’s the only one of its kind, A) they’re wrong, and B) it feels like amateur hour.