Friday, May 04, 2007

Script Editors

I have previously posted about ''script editors I have known'' but Dave Bishop at in his notes of the script factory conference tickled me with his quote from Tony McHale about some script editors wanting to be writers and using your script to show how good they are.

I know Tony and I can imagine the rant and overturned tables when that happened. It recently happened to me. I was on a third draft and my notes arrived. Usually 3rd draft notes on this show are a few pages, four or five at most. Imagine my surprise when I noticed the page count said 10! Imagine my laughter when I saw that about 5 of these pages were suggested dialogue. And I mean things like add '' but'' or 'she can say ''Is that so?'' Granted, this is a baby script ed and might not know what she is doing, but the attitude is one of 'I know better' when the truth of the matter is that most script editors attempts at dialogue sucks farts from swans, honestly.

Obviously the temptation is to say ''sweetheart, if you want to be a writer then give up the monthly pay cheque and give it a go'' On the same show I know a great script editor who is now writing, so doesn't come into the 'most' category, but I wish she was back script editing. Because she did know the job, and how to get the best from the writer, which is essentially tell the writer clearly what you are looking for from a scene and let them get on with it.

There are good script editors out there and when you find them. cherish them.


Schmucks with Underwoods said...

Hi ED,

So how do you deal with such inane feedback? Bite the hand that feeds you? I've also had a few dialogue suggestions recently from a producer, although nothing I couldn't live with.

English Dave said...

Basically I ignore the inane schmucks. Inexperienced or just plain bad script eds try to micromanage the script, have input into every line. That is not how to win friends and influence people in the writer's community. Which is a very small pool.