Wednesday, April 05, 2006

Big Business or Bad Writing?

Almost two years ago, I wrote my first post on Wordplay having just finished writing what I thought was an amazing story. The screenplay is painful for me to read today because the writing is so very bad. There are no words in my vocabulary to tell you how dreadful the writing in that screenplay is. I'm working on a rewrite because I still think it is a good story, maybe not amazing but with some hard work it might get there. A lot has happened since then. I've written several screenplays. My writing has improved. I've had Indy's interested in my work. I've secured an agent. But while I know a lot more now than I knew on May 4, 2004, I also know that I am still a screenwriting infant.

I like to review advice I've gotten in the past because I usually glean something that I missed before. If you're reading this on a feed or you're too lazy to go read my original questions, basically I asked in that post (1) if there is really that much brilliant talent out there trying to get noticed or is there a flood of poorly written crap and (2) how do I know if I'm a poser?

My favorite response, posted by somebody who called himself Leo, is still (two years later) well worth reading. I probably can't post the answer in its entirety without violating some sort of copyright law but the paraphrased gist is:

(1) Yes, there is a tsunami of pathetic crap crashing at the gates of Hollywood and posing as brilliant work by genius writers who think they can't catch a break.

(2) If you're a sensible person and good writer, you can fix anything you write that sucks because you are willing and able to learn.

So, having reviewed these remarks, along with a few opposing comments about the shallowness and hype in Hollywood, I'm rewriting that screenplay that sucks. Let's see how just much I've learned in the past couple of years.

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