Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Webshow: Knowing when to give up on a script

It's been a while, but the time has come to launch some new segments of the webshow.  Over the next month we'll be rolling out at least one new video a week.

On top of that, we've got two interviews that will be coming your way next month in honor of the release of this year's Black List.  The exact release date of the List is never announced ahead of time, but to cover my bases, I've got some Black List-related content that'll cover a pretty wide spread around the likely drop date.  Previous Black List honoree F. Scott Frazier will be dropping by to talk about his writing process and his career.  Also, Black List creator Franklin Leonard will be back for another sit-down and this time we're going to talk about the "colonel's original recipe" Black List.

But all of that is still a few weeks away.  Today, I've got a video that talks about something that every writer needs to learn eventually - when to give up on a script.


  1. I laid two to rest this year. After I let go I ended up using the best scenes and a couple characters in even better stories. Now I know 'that feeling' so I can let go much sooner. Love your video follower.

  2. This is a hard lesson.
    There is a big gap between knowing something needs fixing and knowing how to fix it.
    What I'm learning is that it's really hard to stop mucking with something that is pretty good-ish -- contest semi-finals sort of thing -- but not at the level where people want to buy it. When do you walk away then?
    The screenplay is now in the hands of a half dozen or so readers -- after 100+ queries etc.
    So, we've done all we know how to do.
    Move on to the next. Don't be one of those folks that rewrites same screenplay over and over and over and enters it again and again and again in contest after contest.
    Move on.

  3. The question isn't, 'knowing _if_ you should sometimes give up on a project,' the question is 'knowing _when_ to give up on a project.'

    I sold a novel two years ago based on a project I started in '96. Not a waste of time.

    I'm also rewriting a script that got solid 6s on BL. Probably a waste of time. But I'm not convinced, yet.

    I also write a script that my wife said was the single worst thing I've ever written. Yeah, that one I gave up.

  4. I haven't had a script die on me. I usually think about the idea in full then write a treatment/outline. If it's not as great in thought or practice, then it's done for. There are even some scripts i'd love to write but I know i'm not ready for it yet, focusing on my current work instead.

    All the scripts i'm working on I had a full passion for. Thought a couple aren't as "perfect" as i'd like them to be, I know the A-B-C structure of the story is too good to throw out. So I keep working on them.