First off, this is my first blog post of 2015, so obviously I’ve been slacking quite a bit when it comes to maintaining my blog. Guilty.
Regardless, I plan on getting back on track and resume my previous schedule of posting at least once a month. I’d like to challenge myself to boost that schedule to twice a month, and then eventually to once a week. It’ll take discipline, but as always, anything worth pursuing takes persistence, determination and hard work.
Anyway, onto the topic of this post: What have I been up to since my last blog post?
Well, for starters, in February, I was promoted full-time at my job! I mentioned in a previous post that one of my New Year’s resolutions for 2015 was to get a full time job. I’ve come a long way since I started as an intern back in October 2013. It’s awesome to be working full time with nice people and making a real salary. As my boss herself said to me when she offered me the position, hard work pays off.
Besides work, I’m still pursuing my TV writing career, of course. Thus far, through the TV Comedy Master Class, I’ve written two original pilots as well as a spec script for Modern Family, and I’m currently working on a third pilot idea. I presented my ideas in class and received insightful feedback from my fellow aspiring TV writers as always. Now I’m going to outline the plot to go over for next class, and the following step will be writing the first draft.
I also recently purchased Final Draft 9, a professional screenwriting software tool. Up until then I’d been using a free version called Celtx, which has the same format but doesn’t have all the same features, such as being able to underline scene headings. I’m in the process of revising my Modern Family spec. (The only thing harder than writing is re-writing, but it’s necessary to make the script as great as possible.) Once I’ve polished up the script, I’m going to register it with the WGA and send it off to some contests that are quickly approaching this May!
Which reminds me, speaking of May, one of my friends from the TV Comedy Master Class is moving to LA the end of May! (Okay, so this news isn’t about me, but it lights a fire under me and encourages me to keep pushing towards my own similar goal.) I met her back in the summer in the TV Comedy Workshop, and since then, she’s participated in another TV writing class taught by a Colombia professor in addition to the TV Comedy Master Class. She also took a playwriting class to help her with structure. She’s written a pilot, a feature screenplay and a spec script for Orange is the New Black. She’s been interning with New York Women in Film and Television in which she has a mentor and she meets and networks with a lot of people. She even told me about a web series that she’s working on and was planning on shooting. She’s on the road to success. I’m really happy for her, and I aim to get there someday, too (get to LA, that is).
The biggest issue for me, however, is networking. I’ve been to a few other writing seminars, and attending events like that really is the best way to meet other writers, exchange information and build a network of contacts. Yet, as I’ve also discussed in an earlier post, I’m an introvert, and I’ll admit that my reservations, my inherent shyness and instinctive need to blend in rather than stand out, are qualities that are undoubtedly holding me back as I strive to pursue a career in TV writing.
One thing my TV writing instructor has stressed from the start and continuously stresses to us is that when it comes to TV writing, nobody does it alone. Collaboration is a necessity. Open discussion and getting your ideas out there and pitching ideas and jokes and giving feedback are how scripts are made.
So, the key for me is to take the necessary steps towards getting over my quietness. I need to force myself to go to more events and meet more writers and professionals in the field. I’m sure that, in time, the more I network, the easier it’ll become for me. It’s a matter of overcoming my irrational fears and social anxieties, because the bottom line is that forming new relationships with people who have similar aspirations as I do and networking at events like seminars and workshops can lead to new opportunities. I personally need to stop overthinking and worrying, to conquer my fears and my natural introversion and just do it. Just get out there more. The idea scares me, but it’s what I have to do, because I love writing and I want to prove that I have what it takes to become a commendable TV comedy writer.
It’s like life. You get what you put in.