16.5.08

How to write a spec pilot in 10 (really hard) steps

I recently finished writing my first pilot.  Yay me!

How do you decide when a script is finished? For working TV writers, that's easy. Once there are no more scenes to shoot, there are no more changes to the script (except in the editing room, where they can do some dazzling story adjustments). For us speccers and wannabes, there's no finished. You might think every word in your script is perfect, but one really good note from someone you trust is enough to send that tumbling. You also might get the urge to change things around after you see new episodes of the show you specced, or after you learn more about the craft.

As tempting as it is to spend eternity making minute adjustments to your scripts, it's good to let them go, kinda like kids. That's why I enter competitions. It's not for the prize money or the glory (God knows there's little of that to go around). It's for that 'this script is done' feeling. It's a pretty arbitrary cut-off, but I like to think that that's my best work I'm sending off, therefore the script must be 'finished'. It also allows me to free my mind to concentrate completely on my next project.

Now that I have such vast experience in spec pilot writing (one=vast, didn't you know?) I am uniquely qualified to write posts on how to write a spec pilot. Okay, maybe not. But I am uniquely qualified to share my personal pain and joy with you, write about the mistakes I made and the things I learned, and hopefully we'll all get something out of it.

Being arbitrary yet again, I've chosen to discuss the process in 10 steps / posts. 10 steps which I have not yet decided upon. But when I do, watch out blog fans. Whew, it's gonna be so exciting!

10-Second Restaurant Reviews [in the Form of Silly Poems]

2135 Sunset Blvd, Echo Park (or is it Silver Lake? I never know)

Cramped and cozy 
cultivate a fondness for stranger's elbows
Always packed
patience your most precious gift
Best food ever
served by friendly green elves
No meat, no booze
it's all about chow
Who wants to go
right now?

1 comment:

Schmetterling said...

Saw an article in, I believe, Creative Screenwriting magazine on becoming a writer's assistant.

Hope it can help....