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Stories from a seasoned screenwriter. Take heart! Your creative source is infinite and un-ending. Sometimes Hollywood just rips up the roadmap back to it. The bottom line is that Hollywood is not at all as bad as it sounds. Additionally, it's worse than you can imagine. Remember to pack a sense of humor.


I am a screenwriter living in Southern California. I've written screenplays for most of the Hollywood studios over the past 20 years. One of the uncredited writers of FANTASTIC FOUR, I wrote FIRE DOWN BELOW starring Steven Seagal, and the TV Movie 12:01 PM starring Martin Landau and MANEATER with Gary Busey. I have directed short films. I have written on numerous Hollywood studio assignments, some for big shot actors, some for small shot nobodies.

Thursday, July 07, 2005

Writing for Fun and Profit

One of my readers emailed me:
I'm curious to know if you still make time to
write for fun, or if it's all business related now?
Write for fun? Good question Keith. Because to be successful, you have to make your work fun where ever you find yourself. The spec script answer is self evident; sure it is, otherwise why do it? The trick is - how to find the fun in an assignment? Work is work, writing is extremely difficult, it's not as easy as any non-writer thinks it is. Even when you're writing the script for fun - you've got to work your ass off to make it beautiful. So - the answer is a bit of a Chinese box. You do your work, and inside you always try to find the fun.

And I think the fun is apparent in an email a friend of mine just sent me: "I'm going to read my script now, and try not to commit suicide." This from a guy who really knows what he's doing. He's won an acadamy award. Are we having fun yet?

Now start writing. Or, maybe run for the hills.


Blogger The Moviequill said...

I love giggling, giving myself mental high fives, pounding the desk in a 'eureka!' moment when I am in the midst of a particular creative stretch. I am just doing specs now, so I hope the 'fun' still remains once I get serious (serious being sitting opposite an agent/producer discussing actual work for monetary gain)

Thursday, July 07, 2005  
Blogger Tommyblaze said...

I have some questions that you might like to answer here or perhaps devote posts to them.

Is it necessary to live in LA in order to be taken serioulsy as a new writer? Do you have to have an agent? If not - how do you get the right people to read your work?

How much should a hamster weigh?

How can you find out if the great and wonderful idea that came to you the night before while showering is in fact and original idea and wasn't made ten years ago as a direct to video project? How can you find out if the idea isn't already being developed or made at a studio? Does it matter?

Have you ever stabbed yourself just to see what it feels like? (I'm just asking?

Can you suggest some screenplays to read that illustrate good writing? Maybe some bad ones that still made money? Where do I find these screenplays (I live in Idaho - so don't tell me to go to the store on the corner of Melrose and Armpit)

Whats this union I keep hearing about? WGA? How important is it?

And last - when does and idea truly become a screenplay? How will I know?

Thursday, July 07, 2005  
Blogger Philip Morton said...

Great questions, Tommy, thanks. Will devote posts as they are important questions everyone should know. Particularly about the Hamster and new government weight requirements.

Thursday, July 07, 2005  

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