Tuesday, July 03, 2007

Tips for New Writers from Tony Jordan

While launching Red Planet Pictures writing competition at the International Screenwriters' Festival today, Tony Jordan had plenty of advice for new writers about the craft of writing, how to get your script noticed and how to cope with rejection.

The craft
  • Start with character.
  • Write from the heart - put everything into the script.
  • It's not your job to worry about budget. If you want a helicopter in your script, put one in. Someone else can always take it out.
  • Don't second-guess what you think people want.
  • Don't write something that is like a successful show that's already on. Be first, don't follow - you'll be too late.
  • There is no secret. Just write.

How to get noticed
  • Be nice to people. Script editors are on a career path. The script editors and secretaries you meet today are the commissioning editors of tomorrow.
  • Use the same creativity you put on the page to get your script made - Tony used to put sweets in the jiffy bags when he delivered his scripts. People remembered him. Do something creative that will make sure people remember you.
  • Scan the credits of your favourite shows - write to the script editors and producers of the kind of show you'd like to make
  • Red Planet Pictures has an open policy - if you've got a script you want them to read, send it.
  • If you believe in your script, you have to get people to look at it - pursue them.

How to survive rejection
  • Don't let anyone tell you that you can't write - how do they know?
  • Remember that Tony Jordan still gets rejected. It hurts - every time he vows to give up writing. But he always goes back to it - and he gets shows commissioned.
  • Never give up.

1 comment:

  1. I'm in the early stages of trying to establish myself.
    So far, I find rejection a stimulant and I"m treating as part of the learning curve.
    How long before a rejection letter sends me into a frenzy, I wonder?!

    Anyone who wants to travel with me, is very welcome to visit my blog, at


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