I be a good righter.

Monday, February 18, 2008

Maybe later...

I'm really mastering this procrastination thing. This feeling of "why didn't I do this already?" is turning into an insecurity blanket. Three months on the line, I never found time to write. I'd love to say it was in solidarity with the writers. It wasn't. It got to the point that I had to sign up for a class because I needed the deadlines, and the group wasn't meeting much over the holidays, and I really had no interest in doing anything but playing poker.

So, class started. Which is great. I'm rewriting an old pilot that I love the idea, hate the execution. I think once it's finished it's going to be a great sample. And I'm in dire need of samples as I seem to hover a little too closely to various shows' worlds, an end up with a lot of specs where they do my ideas. Many of my specs are now defunct. In fact, I only have one spec of an existing show left.


Shortly after I enrolled, the group decided to start meeting again, and since I was feeling that pressure of "why didn't I do that already?" I decided that I'd write a DEXTER in the group. So, two scripts at once. I can handle this. I'm great under pressure.

Then my buddy calls me, he remembers this pilot I'd written a long time ago. He loved the idea (not so much with the execution -- apparently this was my failing as I was starting out). He loves a couple of my other pilots. He's working for a company looking to produce online content. He needs treatments for these pilots ASAP.

So, I'm working on all of these things at once. I really am great under pressure, but sometimes I crack. I'm ashamed to say that I ducked out of life on Friday and headed to The Bike. After weeks of writing on six different projects (I liken it to when you're downloading on iTunes. You download one song, it's pretty quick. You download six at one time, each song takes triple the time to download, it seems), I needed to get away. I'm happy to report that I placed 13/188. I'm happy to report that I may have played the best poker of my life (including a moment where I turned to the guy who was heads up against me in a hand and say, "what do you got, Ace-Three?" (beat) "Call." He turns over his hand, he's got Ace-Three, I've got a pair of fives, I win).

Unfortunately, the loss of the day to playing poker resulted in a couple of pretty bad outlines. Thankfully I'm surrounded by some pretty fucking incredible writers who helped me sort some of my shit out in one of the outlines, and with that bit of confidence I was able to attack the other outline and work some shit out there. The treatments are still there, almost done, but not quite.

There's a common denominator to organizing my thoughts, and looking at these scripts through a different light. I don't know if she wants to be mentioned here, so I won't. But she's definitely keeping me sane, making me look good, and deservedly is reaping the good karma benefits as she went back to work last week.

Post posted? Good. I gots some scripts to write.

But really, I'm headed to The Bike...

Monday, February 11, 2008

Psst... is it over?

I think it is. A lot of people seem to think it. Oh, there are the odd few who will vote "no," and in some ways I think they're right to do so. Then there's the majority who will probably vote "yes," and in many ways I think they're right to do so. It's not up to me to dissect the deal. There are many more smarterer folks who will. But as a non-Guild member, I don't get a vote; so I'm going to reserve my opinion for the dinner table discussions.

What I would like to talk about, however, is the past three months. The biggest question around the internets right now is:

"Was is worth it?"

As a non-Guild member, no matter what happened, it wasn't going to affect me in the short term. So, I had to ask myself, from the get-go, why I was going out there. There were a lot of reasons, the main ones being: friends who were being fucked (not in the good way) and delusional hopes that one day I'll be in the Guild and that what the WGA was fighting for would one day affect me.

The first is what got me on the line in the first place. The second is close to what kept me there. See, I walk with my own moral compass. If I'm not delusional, and I actually will be in the Guild one day, then I need to know that any benefits I reap are benefits I fought for.

It'd be easy to sit in my home office, bundled and warm. Not having to brave the icy cold Warner Bros mornings (HOW DID THE AMPTP CONTROL THE WEATHER???). It'd be easy to head into work, and be warm and stylish in the office while occasionally checking the various blogs to see how the strike was going. Hell, I could have been in Ireland still, raking in the cashola with the Hubby, watching from even further afar (but learning to play much better poker).

I've never chosen the path of least resistance. I'm not that gal. The things worth getting are the things worth fighting for.

I hear rumors that some folks are talking about a black list, wherein these folks wouldn't hire people that they'd not picketed alongside (or at least heard were picketing). You know, that'd be great news for me, if I'd been striking to get a job -- which would be weird and, well, weird.

SIDEBAR: A lot of people predict I will get a job because of the contacts I've made on the line. A lot of people asked me for resumes to be an assistant when the strike was over. A lot of people didn't get why I was there. It was not to get a job. In fact, there was one person in particular who asked for my resume, who vehemently explained why I needed to send it to her (I would eat small babies to get on this show, I will not use the strike to get on this show) -- and I understand, she's grateful for my time and efforts. But, I won't be sending my resume. To any of them. I won't be asking agent to send my scripts to anyone. And if this totally fucks me out of a job, then so be it. Again, I have to walk with my own moral compass, and if I got a job out of the strike -- well, that's fucked up.


I can't say that I don't understand the mentality of hiring only picketers -- don't get me wrong, I don't agree with this, but I understand it. There were bonds formed on the line. I'm really grateful that the studios where I chose to picket had really incredible people. One gate in particular had people who went from being names I'd heard of, people whose careers I'd kill to have, to friends. Like, really good friends. People I'm playing poker with on a regular basis now.

That's where I think the mentality comes from. These bonds you form when a group of people are going through the same (or at least similar) experience. No one else can understand that experience. People can pretend they do, but they can't. People can blog about their three days on the line, or whatever. And they'd be wrong.

There's only one exception to this, in my opinion. And that's the fans. I know that they'd have been on the lines if they could. Hell, many of them were! But, seriously, they were wholly invested in this from the get-go. They organized food to the picket lines. They organized getting money to the Strike Fund. Jesus, they organized the whole fucking Pencils Movement -- how fucking awesome is that? They chatted online at the live chat on UnitedHollywood. They figured out what they could do to help, when they couldn't come out on the line. That's a hell of a lot more than some of the WGA members did.

I wish this whole thing had never happened. Had never needed to happen. I wish that more people walked with a moral compass, rather than locking theirs away inside a safe in some Chalet that they never visit.

But since it did happen, I'm glad to note that a lot of people really stepped up to the plate. And the plate became over-crowded with really incredible folks from high-level writers to high-level fans.

And with as many thanks as I'm getting for my miniscule contribution, I'd like to, in turn, thank YOU for doing everything you did. And if you didn't do anything this time around, I've got hope that the next time the opportunity to do the right thing arises... you'll step up.