I be a good righter.

Monday, January 22, 2007

... now they're toilet paper?

Okay, so, uh... Jane's post, "it finally sinks in" totally freaked me out.

I've been hard at work on some specs of existing shows. And, then, I read her post. And, I'm like, well. Great. Shows aren't reading specs of existing shows anymore? So, I go through my pilots. The outlines and existings. It's slim pickin's. Oh, it's great if I want to get a job on the Disney Channel or Supernatural (uh, actually, I'd love that), but I really need a pilot that's more universal. Something that has the potential to get me on a lot of shows. If that's possible. So, I go to my trusty list of ideas. Yeah, I have one. And, I remember this sliver of an idea I'd had a while back. Apparently it's been percolating in my brain while I've not been consciously thinking about it. So, I've got something. Maybe. So, first I'm all mad at Jane (when in doubt, kill the messenger). Then I'm like, wait, this affects me not at all. Then I'm like, wait, she's talking about an agent. Then I'm like, wait, I could blog about this.

So, I decided to get some inside poopage from a friend who's on a hit show:

I ask:

Am I just supposed to wipe my ass with my specs of existing shows now?

He kindly responds:

The best answer is that you need both [a pilot and a spec of an existing show]. Agents want to see original material because they want to know that their client can develop - down the road that's where the money is. Showrunners like to see original material because they're looking to add something new and unique to their show, inasmuch as it also fits within the established confines of its existing voice.

You also need the spec though, but not just to show you can do the voices as common knowledge suggests. To me, it's like the home version of Iron Chef: the ultimate goal is not to faithfully duplicate what somebody else has already done - it is to take the same ingredients and create an episode that is unique for that established world, work that stands out and is memorable even as it is familiar. To say that a spec is used to demonstrate that you can do the voices for an existing show is only to state half the battle. Just as important, you have to prove that you can put your own stamp on it; not in a way that breaks the conventions of the show, but one that furthers them.

I would marry this guy if I weren't married and he was Hugh Laurie...

So, guys, there you have it. Write both.


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