Screenwriters, shouldn’t you be networking?

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Just like actually putting your fingers on a keyboard, you really just have to take that first step to get started. Here is an irreverent guide to many of the steps.

Getting To Know The Neighborhood

The entertainment industry is “a small town,” a tight-knit community. You need to figure out how to fit in if you want to be invited to the parties.

But, don’t worry, lots of nerdy writers eventually get invited to the parties. As much as the producers hate to admit it, it is the writers who make everything possible.

Eventually, if you’re not being an asshat, you’ll find opportunities to move up in the business.

I live in New York and don’t know L.A. neighborhoods very well. I think this is Burbank.

If You’re Physically In Los Angeles

If you’re already in Los Angeles, just start to make friends with people who are already interested in the same things you are.

Maybe go to book signings or comic book signings and talk not just to the main attraction guest, but to other fans of your favorite authors and artists. Maybe some of them are screenwriters or industry craftspeople. Maybe they have screenwriter friends who can refer you to a good writers group.

Try to find people you can connect with on a personal level without being fake. Authentic relationships have staying power.

Don’t be pushy, don’t be too needy, find your zen and make sure they already want to help you before you make any asks. Just about everyone wants to get in the door, and most shouldn’t be, so be cool if you want to pass through the automatic riffraff shields everyone in the business tends to keep up.

Don’t ask strangers to read your scripts.

Don’t shove your work in someone’s face the first time you meet them. It’s the film industry equivalent of an unsolicited dick pic. This is how you get ignored and rejected the fastest. Wait for them to ask to read your shit.

Many entertainment professionals can’t read unsolicited material for legal reasons.

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Charles Beckwith
Screenwriting Shit: A Guide For The Clueless

Forward-thinking creative. Interests include Tech, Biz, Startups, Art, Recipes, Sci-Fi, Writing, Screenwriting, Woodworking, 2600.