Tuesday, December 27, 2011

The Writing Week (Vol. 4) part 207 - 2011 Year in Review

It still seems hard to believe, but 2011 is coming to a close very quickly. Even more surprising to me, is that the close of this year marks my fourth full year of Writing Week entries. Absolutely incredible; that means that I've been seriously pursuing the wring for about five years since I left NYU (I began the Writing Weeks a year after graduating). In those years, I've managed to achieve many things, some small, some a little more monumental. My final Writing Week of 2011 seems a great opportunity to look back on this year and see where 2011 brought me that 2010 hadn't.

When 2010 ended, I had an agent at UTA, a lawyer, a manager, and a team of two producers working together as independents shopping around my post-Apocalyptic script. Since then, the spec market has done little in terms of rebounding from a slump - at least, that is, in terms of any immediate benefit to me. I still have the representation team and the duo of active producers, but the script remains unsold. We're still pursuing the feature film route, but the team has decided to add another option and have begun exploring setting the  project up for television, as well. So far, no one has jumped on it yet, but we're hoping that some of the showrunners and talent freed up by end of the year cancellations will come on board sometime next month. 

By mid year, I was getting a little nervous about my lack of new material. My agent was told I could produce a couple scripts a year - an ambitious promise no matter how long a writer's been in the industry, I think - and I had (have) yet to make good on that. I devoted a good few months to a Medieval revenge spec, but after two drafts - only one of which my manager saw - my manager decided that was not the right direction to go at the moment. Period pieces can be a tough sale, and this one just wasn't quite clicking yet. Rather than devote more time to it, I decided to shelve it for the moment and approach another.

Back to the drawing board I went. I tossed a couple ideas out to the writers group, but none really got me too excited. Jon and I then came up with one we wanted to collaborate on, and though we got some good excitement about it from my manager, the amount of work we were going to have to do to get it to a place where it would be viable exceeded our ability to also work on other projects independently. More importantly, though, we were going to have to compromise on a couple key points about it, which we both liked, and we were not prepared to do that yet. 

Finally, I came up with a new idea that I liked, the group liked, and which the manager also liked; this is my demon thriller. I did a barebones two page synopsis of it, which raised a lot of questions about the script (for both me and my manager). At present, I haven't done much more work on it, which - you don't have to say it - is no bueno. That's the chore for this break, but I've yet to really dig into it. Don't ask me why.

Other than that, I'm putting more ideas down on paper for potential graphic novels, a field that my manager might help me break into. Again, like the above demon idea, that's about all they are. An idea. So, I have to get cracking on those, too.

My writing year might not have been the most eventful, but the year itself was pretty good, for the most part, which leads to my growth as a writer. I was - and still am - getting restless at work. I told my boss, and after much deliberation, she let me take the summer to work remotely. I did some domestic traveling and took an international trip (not on company time), which was a great recharger. I'm still unsure how much longer I will be in New York. It might be a few months; it might be a year and a few months. If I do decide to stay, I'll set out to make my (quite possibly) final year in the city a big one - big, New York year as one would imagine life in New York is displayed in movies and on tv. 

Who knows where I'll wind up at the end of 2012, but I'm determined to go as far as I can in my writing during the year. I hope you'll continue to join me for the ride.