Posted in Writing

The First Proposal

This past week seemed very daunting and I wasn’t sure if I was going to be able to finish everything that needed to be done. Finding out that I had so much research still left to do for my TV series was terrifying. I had already spent hours upon hours just trying to figure out the names of a few my characters, and you’re telling me I have even more research to do? Needless to say, I was not looking forward to doing more research, but things always seem to work out in the end. I have never been as excited for a project as I am for this one.

I only did a couple hours of research for this series, but I am ready to jump right into it. I ended up finishing the entire story. Before I only had the first few episodes mapped out. Now I have the entire series, and I can’t wait to start writing it. Before I even get to writing, I have a lot to do. I had to create my proposal for this series. I had never written a proposal for anything before, so I went in completely blind. After finishing my proposal, I have never felt more confident in one of my projects.

I now know the order in which I need to do things. My proposal was first on that list, so next up is to do more research. The proposal has to be able “to win their attention and investment, submit a proposal for your screenplay that explains the point of your film, its basic plot, its intended audience and your stylistic vision “(PenandthePad, Mitchell). A lot more research. I’ve recently realized thanks to my professor that the character I have created is a lot like Joan of Arc. That had never even occurred to me before, but it’s completely true. If my character is going to be modeled off of Joan of Arc, I have a lot of research to do. Luckily, one of my cousins is a huge Joan of Arc buff, so I’ve got all the inside information.

My main characters finally have a look. That’s the main problem I’ve had with this idea. I always had so many ideas of how these characters were going to look, and until I created my mood board I had no idea.

Now with actual imagery down, I can see the story coming to life. Of course, some of these character designs may change, but at least I have the foundations finished. You can’t build a house without a foundation, so it’s a step in the right direction.

One of the biggest things that had me nervous about embarking on this new project was the number of sources I needed to find. Thirty different sources in such a small amount of time seemed impossible to find. Making the impossible, possible is just something you have to do sometimes. Now, because of finding all these sources, I am more prepared to start writing a script than I have ever been. I already had all the tools and knowledge about the scriptwriting process, but now I page upon pages of research that will turn this script into the best script I have ever written. Not to mention all the movies and videos that I have to watch. Some of the videos are just research for my topic, but a lot of the others explain how to write a TV pilot and script, as well as how to make it successful.

Creating a successful script is probably one of the hardest things you can do. I’ve finished a feature-length script, which is a great accomplishment, but I’m nowhere close to being able to sell it. Of all the sources that I found, I’m most excited to watch the video from the Writers Guild Foundation (WGA) called, “Creating a TV Show from the Ground Up”. It’s essentially a movie as it’s an hour and a half, but it’s chock full of information that I sorely need. It’s a recording of a WGA event that happened in 2009, where it hosted a bunch of TV writers. (The WGA is where you go to register your scripts, so no one is able to rip them off and use them as their own). The most notable writer at this event (for me at least), was Jay Kogen, one of the writers of The Simpsons. The Simpsons have been on TV for thirty years and was recently renewed for another two seasons. If there’s anyone who knows how to write a successful TV series it’s a writer from The Simpsons. I’d recommend anyone who wants to become a TV writer to watch that video. Once I finish watching it, I’ll you all know what I learned and what’s most useful to becoming a TV writer.

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