Tuesday, July 17, 2007

And now, the agonizing


I heart my boss. I really do. I found out last Tuesday morning that a writer's assistant position would be opening up at the company where I work. Now, being a desperate wannabe writer, the idea had naturally crossed my mind to apply for the job before the person who gave me the gossip was done super-secretly telling me about it. But, since I'm also loyal, that was all it did--cross my mind.

Ten minutes later, the awesome recruiter who got me my current position called to ask what I knew about the writer's assistant job opening up and asked if I would be interested.

"Well, uh, yeah, definitely," I replied. Duh. Even though I would be an assistant on a feature and I'm gunning for TV, it's still a writer's assistant gig. Moreoever, I'd be assisting writing partners (hey, I have a partner!) whose main experience before this was a couple of sitcoms (hey, TV!).

So, since my boss was still on vacation, the recruiter said she'd email her and suggest me.

That afternoon, having not even seen the email from the recruiter, my boss called and proceeded to talk me into trying to leave her. (Did I mention I love her?) I "had to do it," "great opportunity," "networking," etc. Like she had to convince me.

Yesterday I got the final okay and had to submit my resume and a writing sample. Let me tell you how fun that was. The movie is an animated action comedy, and the writers are apparently really looking for comedic writers. Okay. Forget the fact that I have no feature samples. These are TV guys; hopefully they'll be okay with that. I've got two solid specs (NCIS and Gilmore Girls), a one-hour pilot for a dramatic comedy and what is essentially the first draft (more than a year old, mind you) of a My Name Is Earl spec.

Right off, I thought of submitting the pilot. It just made sense to me. Of all my writing samples, it's definitely the one that best shows my voice. It is a dramatic-comedy, but there's definitely quite a bit of comedy. Also, pretty much everyone who has read it has had really positive things to say about it and I think it's the best writing sample I've got. Decision made, right? Clearly you underestimate my ability to question myself.

After having one of the producers hammer it into my skull that the writers are really looking for comedy...and having another assistant describe the writers' sense of humor as SNL...my brain slowly turned to Earl.

There's a lot of wacky, almost cartoon style humor to Earl (apparently they even had a claymation episode), and I remembered my spec having some brilliant, hilarious moments (he said modestly). It just didn't quite work as a whole. Certain aspects of the story and characters needed fleshing out. But...those funny bits...

Long story long, I ultimately went with On Duty, the pilot, for exactly the reasons I came up with originally: it's my voice and my idea, it's the script everyone has liked the most so far, and for an hour-long show, it's pretty damn funny.

Now begins the waiting and the agonizing. I don't regret giving them On Duty. It's definitely the best work I've done so far. I do, however, have a copy of Earl printed out and waiting at my desk. Just, you know, in case.

1 comment:

m said...

Good luck, man!!!