Tuesday, May 19, 2009

We interrupt this blog....

Ciao bloggisti,

I am starting yet another spec script so I will be cutting back on blog posts. Instead of posting Monday-Friday, I'm trying for 2-3 times a week.

It's been an interesting past few weeks. I'm trying to stay positive. At some point working 24/7 has to pay off.

I finished the rewrite on the wedding movie. One of the producers gave it to his boss. She loved it. The producers are going out to directors. Once a director is attached then my script will be sent to studios/buyers. Since you can only go to one director at a time, this might be a loooooong process. I have to believe this project will sell or lead to a writing assignment. If not, to say I'm screwed is an understatement. One producer friend said, "so what if it doesn't sell, keep on writing."

No matter what, I will always write but in order to be a working screenwriter one must actually get paid for said work. Like I said in an earlier post, 2009 has to be the year. After 11 years in this crazy, dysfunctional business, I cannot continue to bang my head against a wall.

It's good thing I'm in Rome, where my cost of living expenses are lower. If I were in L.A. trying to do this, it would be beyond depressing. Hearing an actress say, "I told my agent, it's bullshit I'm only making 2.5 million a year" when I'm trying to keep my lights on is not fun.

Being surrounded by everyone hustling to stay in the biz or get in to biz isn't healthy. That energy is not helpful when writing.

I think I had a minor breakthrough. I was/am so worried about being pigeonholed however, there isn't a damn thing I can do about it. It's kind of freeing. I will write what I want to write. I don't give a flying you-know-what-about making movies for teen boys.

I get it. Hollywood is what it is. It's boys club. Always has been, always will be. Thank god there are one or two female and male studio execs who are making movies for everyone, not just the targeted teen boy demographic.

OBSESSED may have received some of the worse reviews I have ever read but that movie, which only cost 20 million to make, is out grossing the much more expensive STATE OF PLAY and THE SOLOLIST. Hollywood only cares about green so maybe some more "urban/black" scripts will be bought. Is it too much to ask that some of them actually be good? grrrr.

Anyway I'm also writing a TV spec pilot. TV scripts have a completely different structure than feature (film) scripts. I'm having fun with it, even though I have no idea what I'm doing.

It's almost the half way point of the year. I'm happy with how things are going creatively. I'm insanely optimistic about the business/financial side. Something positive will happen in the next few months.

Some might say I'm setting myself up for disappointment. However, if I wasn't optimistic, if I really looked at the statistics of how many people like me (not a white male under 30) make it Hollywood, then I would have thrown in the towel years ago.

I have to think this way or I wouldn't be able to get up every single freaking day and work on scripts that might never sell. I wouldn't be able to handle the constant rejection. I would still be full of rage thinking about my horrible first D-girl (Development exec) job in the business.

I love movies, telling stories, hearing stories. I want to continue to work in this business.

I survived getting my Italian residency. Hollywood is not going to break me. ha


Opalintheskywithdiamonds said...

So happy to discover your blog. Caribbean/American myself living in Paris for 2years....found your blog thru my friend Stacey another New Yorker who lived here, now back in NY but coming back to Paris. We were just in Rome, so enchanting. I am a secret closet writer myself...so happy you are sharing all this. Keep going. Opal

katerinafiore said...

Hey Arlene! Keep chugging at your dreams. I know how you feel not wanting to give up, it will manifest. Will be thinking of you!
BY the by hope we can meet up, I am moving back :)

a presto,

Ciao Chow Linda said...

I love your positive attitude. Keep on keeping - you'll make it. and I can say "I read you way back when you were still struggling."

Skywalker said...

Congrats and good luck!!!

J.Doe said...

I think your right being optomistic, especially if a producer loved your story. Sooner or later it will be published and the whole world can see it.
You are in the correct field for sure. Not everybody can write a story and actually have people be interested in it! You are doing a good job.

LuLu said...

Your perseverance and dedication to your dreams is inspiring! Keep staying positive and above all believe in yourself and your capabilities. From reading your blog, I can tell you are just remarkable!! :) Keep it up!!

Sara, Ms Adventures in Italy said...

well, I GUESS we can permit you to cut back on blogging (says the blogger that squeaks out a post 1x week) - do what you gotta do!!

I'll probably be heading down in June....better see you!!! I feel some Cacio e Pepe...and free drinks...calling my name.

nyc/caribbean ragazza said...

opal - thanks for stopping by. Glad you had a great time in Rome.

katerinafiore - so everything worked out with the job/visa? Congrats. See you when you get here.

ciao chow linda - grazie. I feeling good about the new projects. We'll see. Fingers crossed.

skywalker - thank you!

j. doe - grazie. I'm trying to be patient, which is so not my nature. Being in Italy has helped me loosen up my control freak ways. ha

lulu - thank you for the positive vibes.

sara - ha. I hope its not 110 degrees by the time you get here. Spring is gone it seems and summer is here.

Petulia said...

brava! I love the positive attitude:-)

Jen of A2eatwrite said...

Once again, you are my hero(ine). Truly.

I'm thrilled the producer was thrilled. That's an important step.


SDG said...

Sounds like you received a nice bit of good news. it's a start. Keep plugging away and I wish you all the best!

Kim B. said...

Hooray for the producers loving your script! I know *i* want to see your movies and you can tell from the blogosphere there are quite a few of us! Glad you have gotten some positive feedback- your tenacity and determination are *very* inspiring, to say the least.

Keep doing the good work, writing what YOU want to write, which is what others of us want to see. We are out here and those danged producers know it (thanks to Twilight etc I'm sorry to say -- not that *that* is my type of movie but something other than teen boys, you know).

Keep going strong. You're in Rome for a reason and following your bliss. There are a lot of fellow souls out here pulling for your success!

milanesemasala said...

If you were able to survive Hollywood and a move to Rome, I'm sure you're going to make it with your scripts. You're positive and confident about your future. And positivity begets success.

And don't worry about cutting back on blogging. I'm lucky if I can write a post once a week. But you know as John Lennon sang, "Life is what happens to you while you're busy making other plans"

nyc/caribbean ragazza said...

petulia - Hopefully it will last for a while. ha

jen - well you know how I feel about you. grazie.

sdg - thank you. yes it is a start. I must be patient.

kimb - grazie. You would think with the success of Twilight, Mamma Mia and SATC last year the studios would expand their slates.

milanese - that is one of my favorite quotes. Without getting too "crunchy" I'm a big believer a positive attitude attracts positivity. When I was in my very, very negative phase in L.A. nothing went well.

Gibber said...

Totally off topic...but since you mentioned it...i was completely prepared to hate Twighlight. Too popular with the tweens, kristen stewart sort of gets on my nerves, etc. But when my neice made me watch it, i found myself really liking it! Gah! I might even see the sequel in theatres!

Wordtryst - Liane Spicer said...

Happy writing, nyc/caribbean!

nyc/caribbean ragazza said...

gibber - can't get with you on that unless there is a new male lead. However, glad for Catherine Hardwick (the director) that the movie did so well.

wordtryst - grazie!

erin :: the olive notes said...

and you survived the Italian driving test...so you're definitely set!!

Moi said...

I'm so excited for you that your script is in a producer's hands!! Keeping my fingers and toes crossed that it gets a thumbs up relatively quickly!

nyc/caribbean ragazza said...

erin - I have the driving test early next month. yikes, but at least I'm done with the written test.

moi - grazie. I'm going to light a candle and say a prayer to Saint Francesco de Sales, patron saint of writers.

Anonymous said...

Judging from the following on this blog; people, myself included, want to hear your stories. People you don't even know are cheering you along because you have touched them. You have connected with people and isn't that what a great movie does?

So keep on keepin' on. Hollywood will catch up to you.

Anonymous said...

Good luck with your career. You've got a great attitude.

Tracie B. said...

no it won't break you!!

girasoli said...

Great news that the producer loved it! We are all cheering you on.

Diana Strinati Baur said...

You amaze me. I am going thru a rough patch right now and need to keep my head up like you.

nyc/caribbean ragazza said...

scattered - grazie mille. Hopefully we will hear some good news in a few weeks.

ms. violetta - thank you!

tracie b - In the future I must remember the drama at the Comune and then things won't seem so bad.

girasoli - it's a big first step, so we're excited.

diana - we'll cheer each other on. hope things get better soon.

glamah16 said...

This is great news and I ma keeping you in my positive thoughts!

nyc/caribbean ragazza said...

thanks glamah!

Lauren said...

I think it is so cool what you are doing! Speaking purely as a consumer of film, I don't think it can be understated the need for great women writers like you and their stories to be told in movies, especially in Hollywood. If I see one more trailer for a bromance movie, I will just despair.

Tanti auguri and keep at it! You've built a dedicated audience already.

nyc/caribbean ragazza said...

lauren - grazie mille. Like you, I'm so over the "bromance" comedies. Enough already.