U.S. CitiesCity-Data Forum Index
Covid-19 Information Page
Go Back   City-Data Forum > U.S. Forums > California > Los Angeles
 [Register]
Please register to participate in our discussions with 2 million other members - it's free and quick! Some forums can only be seen by registered members. After you create your account, you'll be able to customize options and access all our 15,000 new posts/day with fewer ads.
View detailed profile (Advanced) or search
site with Google Custom Search

Search Forums  (Advanced)
Reply Start New Thread
 
Old 06-16-2011, 11:29 PM
 
Location: California
31,586 posts, read 34,827,179 times
Reputation: 27238

Advertisements

Quote:
And write. I can't stress this enough. Write every single day.
This brings back memories. I had a college teacher say this in class 20 years ago...because HIS college teacher said it to him! It's always been true I guess.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message

 
Old 06-17-2011, 12:33 AM
 
Location: Here&There
2,209 posts, read 3,712,577 times
Reputation: 2424
There are conventions for pitching scripts, might want to try it out. I'm not sure how well you know how these things go but basically you have like a couple of minutes to sell it, by 'sell it' I mean for them to consider reading the entire thing.

You can always go the indie route too.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 06-17-2011, 12:34 AM
 
3 posts, read 3,585 times
Reputation: 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by LAappraiser View Post
I may be off base, but why do you need to be in LA to write? I could see if you were an actor or performer, but what's the advantage of being here until you have something to sell? My neighbor is a screenwriter and has sold some scripts, most of which while he was living in Florida. He only came here because he started getting staff writer offers. It would seem to me that if you stay in a more affordable place, you'll have more time to write and hone your skills. Perhaps write a few plays and get them performed locally, or try to get some stories published. You can always visit LA to shop your wares around, but you need some credentials. Otherwise, you're just gum on their shoe, a dime a dozen. And we're pretty much full up with waiters. JMHO
Well I do write. You're right in the sense that I physically don't need to be in LA to write. But everything I've heard, which is all I can go off of, is that if you want the best possible shot you have to move to LA. I also (surprise) want to leave Missouri.

Thanks for all the great responses, again.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 06-17-2011, 01:55 AM
 
164 posts, read 551,133 times
Reputation: 368
Quote:
Originally Posted by st_louis View Post
I'll jump right into it. I'm 21 years old, I have 2 years left of college left. I live in Saint Louis Missouri.

- I understand the culture shock
- I understand how much more expensive it is
- I understand how hard it is to find a job
- I understand that I may not fully understand these things to the proper extent

I have been reading this forum for a couple months now. I read about people who have some connections, a good degree, job experience. I have very little of all of that in the field I'm looking to join, the entertainment industry.

I am interested in writing screenplays for film and television (i've done a couple, how good they are is to be determined) etc, etc. I know this is hard, and a long shot, which is the only reason I'm still going to school and getting a degree in an unrelated field while working on my scripts on my own time (read: not going to film school)

...I guess what I'm asking is. How does someone like me with very little connections (I have a cousin who models and is trying to act out in there, thats it) or job experience in the field I'm hoping to break into move forward? JUst dive right in?

I doubt I'll get a proper answer but after reading this for a couple months everyone makes it sound basically impossible for someone with my lack of credentials and experience to move out their and even BREAK in at the bottom.

Would I just have to go around trying to make friends first? (half joking)

Thanks for reading this long winded and potentially confusing first post.
1. Come out here.

2. Dive right in, but be patient. Expect it to take a decade. If it ends up being less, consider yourself lucky.

3. Treat LA as a city you live in, not just a place you have to tolerate for your career. If you learn to enjoy the city, you'll be here longer, be less bitter, and will have a better shot at having a career here as a writer.

4. Take it slow. Don't push and rush, even if your friends are pushing and rushing. They will likely burn out faster and give up sooner than you.

5. Find some stability in a job. Not only will it help you pay the rent, it will help keep you sane, because you at least feel responsible for yourself - paying your own rent, paying your own bills, etc. Rich kids who don't need to work are lucky with money, but they are unlucky because without that foundation of work, it's easy to become lost and aimless. You're guaranteed to meet a few here and when you do, consider yourself lucky.

6. Write like a mofo. There are two kinds of people in the industry. Those who are known for their craft (writing, acting, directing, music, etc.) and those who are known for their "business"/networking. Learn to be business savvy, but be careful about developing a reputation for being a networker/industry guy first, artist second because you'll lose the respect of everyone. Be business minded, but don't be known for being business minded. Be known as the writer who is industry savvy, rather than being the "industry networker" who happens to be a writer.

7. Visit your family/parents at least once a year. It will ground you in reality, and remind you who you are.

8. Intern at production companies, agencies, etc. Whatever you can get your hands on. But don't make it your life either - they will either make you work for free, or pay you like crap. You're a writer first. Not an intern first. Get what you want from it (exposure, experience), but find a job that pays the bills on top of that. Don't get sucked into the "internship downward spiral" or else you'll be here 3+ years working for $15K/yr and pigeonholed as "the intern b*tch". Plenty of people like that here who came here hoping to be writers, actors, etc. but got sucked into the system and are trapped in this in-between world where no one will want them to be an agent/manager/casting/studio employee that makes a decent living (i.e. you're making intern money for life), but at the same time no one takes them seriously as a writer/actor/filmmaker/musician because you've been someone's b*tch for years.

Aside: ideal internships are part-time; you go in and "volunteer" a few hours each week, which still gives you time to have a real day job, to write, and to have a life. Don't feel they're doing you a favor - you're doing them a favor as a volunteer. Do it as long as you feel it's useful to you, and then move on -- you can cycle through different agencies, producer offices, etc every few months. Avoid getting sucked into a "full-time" volunteer thing like some rich kids and other naive kids. It's a sham.

Again, if you they see you as their b*tch, they will treat you as their b*tch.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 06-17-2011, 10:59 AM
 
32,525 posts, read 31,826,136 times
Reputation: 32399
redturtle, that was a GREAT post.

st louis: Are you interested in being a part of the industry or just the screenwriting end of it? (This ties in with redturtles #6.)
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 06-17-2011, 09:31 PM
 
364 posts, read 899,414 times
Reputation: 245
I agree with LAappraiser. You don't need to move to L.A. to write. If you're offered a job, then yes move here. Until then,don't even bother. Like you mentioned, L.A. is expensive and if you read today's newspaper, the job market is abysmal. Plus nearly everybody you meet is a "screenwriter".

My advice - stay where you are. Write a novel which you think would be a good film. Spec scripts aren't selling like they used to. Producers want a fan base with a literary property; so, again, write a novel. Not only will you get paid for the book, but you will also get money for the movie rights plus you can get money for writing the screenplay (don't be surprised though if other writers polish up your work).

Bottom line - Don't go down the same path that everybody else is taking. Take a different path. You'll probably get to your destination a lot faster.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 06-18-2011, 07:12 AM
 
5 posts, read 5,249 times
Reputation: 16
I dont know why people deter others from moving to California if that's what they wanna do. California isn't some unobtainable place to live where only special people make it. If that were the case, then why is it so highly populated? Obviously people come, and stay. Listen St Louis, if you wanna move to LA, move! Like someone said, you don't HAVE to live anywhere particular to write, but if you think LA will not only give you inspiration, but will make you closer to the entertainment industry, then do it! If not for that, move here just for the simple fact that California is awesome. People always say that it's so expensive here, well you also get paid more. Minimum wage is a dollar more out in California. Sure, either way it's still expensive...but people like St Louis and I, who live in boring event-less areas are sick of it! We want to see some adventure and excitement and we're willing to pay for it.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 06-18-2011, 06:53 PM
 
3,413 posts, read 6,566,374 times
Reputation: 1431
Get a website, write short movies, get a few actor friends (they are everywhere) and film them on your iphone or other video camera, post them on "you tube", try to build up a fan base, do stuff no one else is doing with no thought about whether it will sell but because you like it, get a lot of views on youtube. You build up a youthful following and THEY will find you.

Last edited by laysayfair; 06-18-2011 at 06:54 PM.. Reason: sp
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 06-18-2011, 08:22 PM
 
Location: San Antonio Texas
11,431 posts, read 16,914,890 times
Reputation: 5224
Quote:
Originally Posted by st_louis View Post
I'll jump right into it. I'm 21 years old, I have 2 years left of college left. I live in Saint Louis Missouri.

- I understand the culture shock
- I understand how much more expensive it is
- I understand how hard it is to find a job
- I understand that I may not fully understand these things to the proper extent

I have been reading this forum for a couple months now. I read about people who have some connections, a good degree, job experience. I have very little of all of that in the field I'm looking to join, the entertainment industry.

I am interested in writing screenplays for film and television (i've done a couple, how good they are is to be determined) etc, etc. I know this is hard, and a long shot, which is the only reason I'm still going to school and getting a degree in an unrelated field while working on my scripts on my own time (read: not going to film school)

...I guess what I'm asking is. How does someone like me with very little connections (I have a cousin who models and is trying to act out in there, thats it) or job experience in the field I'm hoping to break into move forward? JUst dive right in?

I doubt I'll get a proper answer but after reading this for a couple months everyone makes it sound basically impossible for someone with my lack of credentials and experience to move out their and even BREAK in at the bottom.

Would I just have to go around trying to make friends first? (half joking)

Thanks for reading this long winded and potentially confusing first post.
Just do it. You're only young once and will regret not doing it later on if you don't do it now. I came to LA at 27 yrs old and loved it. Unfortunately, it got too expensive in the last few years., so I'm back in Texas. But I don't regret going at all.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Please register to post and access all features of our very popular forum. It is free and quick. Over $68,000 in prizes has already been given out to active posters on our forum. Additional giveaways are planned.

Detailed information about all U.S. cities, counties, and zip codes on our site: City-data.com.


Reply
Please update this thread with any new information or opinions. This open thread is still read by thousands of people, so we encourage all additional points of view.

Quick Reply
Message:


Options
X
Data:
Loading data...
Based on 2000-2020 data
Loading data...

123
Hide US histogram

Over $104,000 in prizes was already given out to active posters on our forum and additional giveaways are planned!

Go Back   City-Data Forum > U.S. Forums > California > Los Angeles
Similar Threads
Follow City-Data.com founder on our Forum or

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 01:35 PM.

© 2005-2020, Advameg, Inc. · Please obey Forum Rules · Terms of Use and Privacy Policy · Bug Bounty

City-Data.com - Archive 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35 - Top