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Home » Archives » June 2007 » Second Thoughts
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06/08/2007: Second Thoughts

When you decided to try to launch a writing career, you were faced with the question of what to do first. Unfortunately, once that's settled, there's a question that can be even trickier. What to do second?

Patrick in L.A. writes in with this question, which is also relevant to Zach, whose letter I answered a while back, and I'm sure, to a lot of the rest of you. You've got that first spec -- one for a produced show, so you can submit it to ABC/Disney. Now you've got to decide what to do next. Another spec for a real show? Maybe a comedy to balance out that drama, or vice versa? Or a spec pilot? Or a spec feature? Or a spec short film?

The truth is, it hardly matters. Because ultimately, you will probably end up having at least one of each of these. So all you're really worrying about here is the order. Don't waste time worrying about that. Just pick one and do it, and then do the other one. Specs for existing shows aren't as valuable now as they used to be, but I still think there's probably value in having one for a dramatic show and -- perhaps, why not -- for a comedy if your instincts lie in that direction. But you're clearly going to need other material, too. So even as you're writing that "House," keep an active file of feature-or-pilot ideas, too. And, of course, no one is keeping you from working on two projects at once -- that can be a good way to stave off writing fatigue, in fact, having a way to change gears by switching to work on the other project.

So stop sweating, Nation, about which one to write next. In the long run, the order isn't going to matter. Except in your autobiography. (Which you should write last.)

Lunch: Doritos, doughnut, coke. I know, I know.


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