AW Amazon Store

If this site is helpful to you,
Please consider a voluntary subscription to defray ongoing expenses.


 

Welcome to the AbsoluteWrite Water Cooler! Please read The Newbie Guide To Absolute Write

Results 1 to 10 of 10

Thread: Unoriginal Writer

  1. #1
    New Fish; Learning About Thick Skin
    Join Date
    Jun 2016
    Location
    Arizona
    Posts
    13

    Unoriginal Writer

    This might be found as random, but I can't seem to write an original screenplay. I know the format of screenplay writing, but all I can write are adaptations. So far, I have three possibly four TV series projects, but sadly none of them will ever see the light of day and I find that to very sad. The projects are a TV show about Nightwing with the possibility to spin-off to a reboot TV series of Birds of Prey (2002 series was dismal). The second show idea is a TV adaption of Rick Riordon's Percy Jackson and the Olympians. The movies were okay, but strayed too much from the source material. My last project is a loosely American Remake of a Kiwi show called The Almighty Johnsons. The reason I say "loosely" is because while the concept is the same, the genders, mythology and ages of the original characters are different. My reasoning for this thread is because people who do adaptations are writers too, and with comics, novels and TV shows from other countries, there will always be a need for writers who can do this kind of projects. I sadly don't have the money to purchase the rights to any of these endeavors, but I don't want the ideas to die.

  2. #2
    practical experience, FTW cornflake's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Posts
    13,657
    What is your goal? I mean the likelihood of someone producing your original tv series is somewhat lower than the likelihood of you being struck by lightning while holding a winning lottery ticket, riding atop the Loch Ness Monster. Has nothing to do with you; that's just how it is for any unknown.

    If you're adding to that that your stuff is basically unproducable, because it's stuff that belongs to other entities, yeah, that only adds to your problem.

    If you want a job writing, however, unoriginal in terms of worldbuilding is fine. You need specs for a packet to get a job, or get into an internship, both of which are longshots, but possible longshots. So find a couple of existing shows you like and spec those?

  3. #3
    New Fish; Learning About Thick Skin
    Join Date
    Jun 2016
    Location
    Arizona
    Posts
    13
    I had some ideas for both Gotham, but how can I be taken seriously when you are not a professional?

  4. #4
    Rewriting My Destiny Cyia's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Location
    Brillig in the slithy toves...
    Posts
    17,957
    It's standard procedure to write spec scripts as a new writer. You take a show you like - say Gotham - and write a couple of scripts for it. They'll not likely be produced, but that's not the goal. The goal is to demonstrate that you can write in character for an existing show. It's actually best if you do this for more than one show to build your portfolio, and adding a spec-movie script is fine.

    This kind of example writing can help you get work as a staff writer, but not necessarily on the show your spec scripts are written for.

  5. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by Cyia View Post
    This kind of example writing can help you get work as a staff writer, but not necessarily on the show your spec scripts are written for.
    Well said. There's a significant difference between nursing along a few projects you privately adore (this almost falls under the aegis of 'fan fiction) vs strategically positioning yourself for a career in tv writing. Even though 'adapting' is somewhat of a skill, it is not a cornerstone to support a writer's rise through the ranks. No company will hire an unknown just to adapt the work of others; they have existing staff writers who do that--and those writers have all climbed up the ladder rung-by-rung.

  6. #6
    New Fish; Learning About Thick Skin
    Join Date
    Jun 2016
    Location
    Arizona
    Posts
    13
    I can do the writing, it's tying to get it seen by the people making the show that is the hard part.

  7. #7
    New kid, be gentle!
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Location
    Los Angeles
    Posts
    388
    Writing adaptations or remakes of material for which you haven't obtained the rights is mostly a waste of time. Writing a spec script for an existing TV show is acceptable as a writing sample. However, if you write a spec for GOTHAM, it's unlikely that GOTHAM will look at the script because of liability reasons. Typically, shows look at specs for other shows that are similar to theirs. The writer's goal is to be hired on staff, as most shows do not buy specs. But nowadays, original pilots seem to be the preferred method for determining if a writer is staff-worthy.

    You can certainly take the idea of an existing show and twist it in a way to where it doesn't much resemble the original. Remember, ideas cannot be copyrighted - only the execution of the idea. So make the execution unique.

    Frank Darabont has made a career of adapting the works of others, and it takes real talent to be able to do it successfully. But as a new writer trying to break in, writing original spec scripts is almost always smartest thing to do.
    Last edited by creativexec; 11-08-2016 at 09:36 AM.

  8. #8
    practical experience, FTW RightHoJeeves's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2013
    Location
    Perth
    Posts
    1,316
    Quote Originally Posted by grimkatr View Post
    I can do the writing, it's tying to get it seen by the people making the show that is the hard part.
    Yup.

    I don't know a lot about it, but I watched a documentary recently about it, and basically the way to get into the industry was:
    1) move to LA
    2) be in the rooms/parties where agents are, or take whatever job you can get at an agency and try that way.

    Anyway, it looked brutally difficult and required massive commitment. It made novel writing look like a breeze in comparison.
    Being judgemental must surely be one of the most joyful activities known to the species and it is cruel that other animals are denied this pleasure.

    @guerre_stellari

  9. #9
    from words to worlds zmethos's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2016
    Location
    California
    Posts
    281
    Quote Originally Posted by grimkatr View Post
    I can do the writing, it's tying to get it seen by the people making the show that is the hard part.
    That's because they won't look at it, for legal reasons. Gone are the days of selling a single script to a television show and hoping it gets filmed. (Maybe if you have an agent, but not just on your own.)

    A spec is a calling card, meant to showcase your talents. It won't get you staffed on the show you write the spec for; it *may* get you staffed somewhere else if you can get anyone to look at it. Enter it into some competitions--a few take specs, though many are looking for original work.

    This is assuming your goal is to be a TV staff writer. If so, you really need to be in either L.A. or NYC where they're filming shows.

  10. #10
    practical experience, FTW RightHoJeeves's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2013
    Location
    Perth
    Posts
    1,316
    The thing to keep in mind is that TV writing jobs (or any writing job in Hollywood, really) is at the top of the pile for dream jobs for many many millions of people. So the competition is fierce.

    But with most creative careers, if you "play the game" right, you're not really competing with millions of people. You're competing with that 0.5% who actually do what it takes to get themselves over the line. They're the people who take their craft super seriously, spend years honing their skills, (in TV land) write spec scripts that show their skills, move to LA/NYC, network, etc etc etc.

    Even after you do all that you're still competing with a lot of people, but chances of success do become a lot higher.
    Being judgemental must surely be one of the most joyful activities known to the species and it is cruel that other animals are denied this pleasure.

    @guerre_stellari

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  
Custom Search