May 27

LONELY WRITERS. . . .

Squirreled away in your apartment, typing all night, sleeping all day. Go out once in a while to stock up on groceries, then back to the grind. You are creating genius work. You are the stoic writer, alone in your world of insight and creativity. Who needs friends? When you are done, your work will shine above all others.

In your dreams….

In the real world, successful writers are part of a community. They meet other writers, develop support networks to help them through the struggle that is each screenplay, maintain healthy relationships to provide balance and perspective on their work. As their careers begin to develop, they befriend development execs and other professionals. In short, they are part of the world of writers.

Why?

Because you can’t create a writing career in a vacuum.

Even in the writing process, professional writers rely on substantial support networks they have developed over the years – trusted friends with whom they can discuss ideas, trusted readers to critique work as it is being developed, other trusted colleagues. This is a huge advantage over you, writing alone in your apartment.

Once the script is completed, these same writers have still more people to rely on – fans they have made around town, executives they have befriended, producers, managers, agents, and on and on. Another huge advantage they have over you.

They also live in the real world – friends to hang out with, interests outside writing, some writers even have spouses and children – yes, just like real people. Yet another advantage over you.

Developing a community that supports you as a writer is not just a lifestyle choice. It is necessary to the work. It makes you a stronger writer, substantially increases the chance of any script you write actually meeting the needs of the motion picture industry, and helps you through the many low points every writer faces.

To develop your own network, you must reach out, hold yourself out openly as a writer, celebrate your chosen path, and draw to you people who support that part of who you are. You must align your universe to your goal of advancing your writing career. Nothing less will get you there.

It can take a long time to develop your network. But it doesn’t happen alone, in your apartment, with a bag of groceries rotting on the counter, while you create genius inside your head. Tomorrow, why not write in the coffee shop? And take a break to introduce yourself to the person writing on the laptop next to you.




Copyright © 2014. All rights reserved.

Posted May 27, 2005 by TW in category "The Business", "The Craft

17 COMMENTS :

  1. By Fun Joel on

    And how about the added benefit of hearing how “real people” speak, what they do, how they act and interact, etc? In other words, the best research anyone can do for the masterpiece he or she is writing is to experience life!

  2. By Gary on

    Sweet Jesus, please rescind that last piece of advice. The LAST thing we need is another wannabe writer typing away on his laptop at The Coffee Bean :)

  3. By Brian Maloney on

    You smacked the nail dead center hopefully without smashing any fingers residing in apts. all day:) It is the cookie cutter notion that if your an astute writer you must confine yourself and drag your entire soul like a river.

    As you articulated so well, I must echo; you need not act as if your some hermit afraid to step into society because it may sap your funk. To the contrary, if you do socialize (not like mr. hollywood) but like a normal person, you can develope a much better understanding of your world and feel better inside about your peers and environment. Hence, a much better capability to become creative because your gears switch more often!
    Excellent Post and great writing,
    Regards,
    Brian Maloney
    http://valueprep.com

  4. By alan on

    tw

    sorry, but i will not speak to the guy(s) writing scripts in coffee shops. holy cow, that’s all i need

  5. By TW (Post author) on

    Alan:

    1. Could be a girl….

    2. They’ll only speak to you if you’re writing in the coffee shop, too.

    3. Some great writers write in coffee shops and some coffee shops are great for writing.

  6. By alan on

    tw

    i can tell if it’s a girl. i don’t write in coffee shops. i’ll talk to great writers someplace other than a coffee shop

    those guys writing script in coffee shops, most-o-the time, holy cow

  7. By LonelyGuy on

    Sometime I feel very lonely today is the that day. I do not know what to say. There are thousands people around me. I do not know what to say do. I am feeling all lonely and just myself. I … I may just do something… I will not die… I am getting crazy… I am in love with people who do not exist… lonelyness kills people… I am already dead…

  8. By PlottingAlongGirl on

    LonelyGuy, you’ve nailed my angst, that unsayable mass — I’m in love with people who do not exist, half of relationships and friendships I can’t find. Writing brings me into myself and plugs me into these realities, so that I can barely stand to do it. Hope you are better this night in June 2007 than you were that evening in August 2005.

  9. By LiNCOLN PARK on

    From what I understand a great deal of HARRY POTTER was written in a coffee shop. Only a limited mind would limit the places where it thought creative thinking could take place.

  10. By Chris on

    LonelyGuy, I can absolutely sympathise with the feeling lonliness. Honestly, I think that’s all I feel after I write an amazing scene for my book. That world I made in my book seems so much more appealing than the one I live in and now I’m suffering ‘the grass is greener on the other side syndrome.’ Sometimes I forget what it means to be a part of this world, mostly because my characters aren’t part of it. It’s true, it can be so lonely when you feel like no-one else understands what it tuly is to feel this way.

  11. By ANONYMOUS on

    hmmmmmmmmm dont you think that writers are those people who want to share there feelings thier emotions which they experienced in thier lives………….i really want to do the same i want to share my feelings as well but i just cant write anything ……………dont know how to start …….just dont have any idea ……..help me………

  12. By Chris on

    Dear anonymous,

    Writers are people who want to share their thoughts, feelings, experiences and views to the world. And we as writers all have to ask ourselves, ‘What is the purpose of this book? What do I want to achieve by writing it?’ When you answer that question, let it be your guide. Keep your mind wide open to the world, and try to see the beauty (or the pain) that only we as writers can see, but only you as an individual can interpret. Getting that perfect story-line with just the right types of characters who compliment each other, and the story how you want it to be represented can be tricky and tiresome, but if you’re passionate about what you have to say and about writing, then have patience. When the time is right, you’ll know what to do.

  13. By Mariel Andersen on

    Wow! How many brilliant aspiring writers who have always been the best and have a style like no one else and who’s every syllable scintillates and who burn with ripe stories struggling to squ-POP out into the world ARE there?

    Ugh.

    How daunting is this competition?

    Maybe I’ll meet you all someday.

  14. By Sid London on

    I’m an artist as well as writer, but definitely have this problem. I don’t know of any writing or art groups near me and have no contact with other freelancers. I have the skills to be self employed, but the isolation always gets to me after a few weeks and I end up running back to an employer just for the social life!

    Are there any online ‘offices’ – I’m thinking of something similar to Skype (link up a web cam and mic in your home studio/office and have people to talk to from 9 to 5 while we work)?

  15. By Sid London on

    In fact, if anyone freelancing in any creative job (writing, painting, animation, designing…) wants to add me on Skype and have someone ‘in their office’ during the working day then feel free to add me. I’m planning to get a web cam and mic and just make myself available and hopefully start a group. I need a routine anyway, so the peer pressure would help!

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