Saturday, June 17, 2006

Back To The Loop

I rarely get any industry related mail apart from the gratifying agents statements telling me I can have red meat at the weekend. So imagine my surprise when I get TWO letters in the same post, both marked ITV.

Now, I generally look on any mail that doesn't carry my agent's familiar font as most likely being a demand for money. And usually I'm not disappointed. But I was pretty damn sure I didn't owe ITV any money, so what the hell, I may as well open them.

Letter number one - a pass on a project I'd actually forgotten I'd pitched. It was a well reasoned, long and thoughtful pass. And as the vast majority of responses to a pitch are passes it is always nice to get the thoughtful, reasoned ones rather than the ' Just didn't grab me - Not for us - Slate full at the minute - Piss off and never darken our mailbox again' variations.

Letter number 2 - An invite to a network's 'Writer's party' Wahoooooo! An invite to get well fed, drink, flirt outrageously and possibly even get lucky on someone elses dime! Okay it involves a schlepp to Manchester but hey, I'd do that for any one out of the four above.

Except that won't be why I'm going. Well......not the only reasons why I'm going.

Last year this same network optioned one of my projects. I mean paid cold hard cash. Did I get an invite to a writers party? Did I buggery. So now I've got the chance I'm going to take it. because me sclepping from London shows I like these guys and want to work with them. They have some idea of that because I didn't get all ansty when the project they optioned stalled, through no fault of mine. And that I've pitched them two or three projects since.

But the whole point is that deep down, unless you are a total social retard you just cant beat personal contact. Your writing may open doors, but I think that personal contact helps keep them open.

For example a producer has two writers in mind for a project, both write equally well. The first writer he has read. Maybe exchanged e-mails. Maybe even met once at a pitch meeting. But the other writer he has met in more informal circumstances , shared a beer and a joke with, knows they are on the same wavelength.
If you were that producer who would you pick for the project?

So that's why I'm going. And I might get lucky. Having recently seperated I haven't had sex in so long I've forgotten who handcuffs who.


Anonymous said...

Totally agree with you about personal contact. Not that I'm a working writer or anything (well, I have a job and I write, but they're not related), but in the industry I'm in I can also see how knowing folks gets you the breaks.

English Dave said...

Thanks for stopping by Raven.