Welcome to My Blog

First there were the yellow pads.  Then the marble notebooks.  Then the typewriter. Then the computer.  Yeah, that’s how long I’ve been at this business  of writing.   And if you check out–let me rephrase–if you read my blog on a regular basis, you will pick up valuable tips, pointers, lessons, and the benefit of my experience, in genre as diverse as screenwriting and copywriting.  (Is copywriting a genre?  Copywriting is a damn good way to make a living, though.) 

I am here to tell you the truth.  I won’t lie to you.   For example: I will not say that you should write if you really want to.  You should write if you have talent.  This truth is based on an even deeper one: There is such a thing as talent.  Nothing has proven this as unequivocally as the local auditions for American Idol, where we see singer wannabes whose voices melt the rubber off tires get up before the judges believing they can make it if they really want to.  This is our American Ideal: That if you really want something, if you really believe in your dream, if you don’t let anything stop you, you will succeed.  It’s not true.  Therefore, I will not say this to you.

The truth is: Writing is hard work, there’s an ungodly amount of competition, a market that’s flooded with scripts and manuscripts, and  a propensity among the people who can advance your career—producers, editors, agents, managers, investors—to be very busy.

Write only if you have to because you are filled with burning desire because you have talent that you need to give to the world.  If you don’t know what I’m talking about, do something else.   Actors, ditto.  Double ditto.  There is nothing as hard to break into as acting.  The vast majority—something like 99.4% of actors—do not make a living at it.  This is approximately the same percentage of female screenwriters who cannot make a living.  But let’s not guillotine the males just yet.   Their percentages are better but still extremely daunting.

Yes, it does take the four Ds—determination, discipline, drive, and desire—to make it as an artist.  And it takes something else.  Talent.  What is talent? A gift.  A gift of innate knowledge.  You are lucky to have a gift no matter how it shakes out.  And if you do have a gift, it will burn in you, and cause you to do whatever it takes to give your gift to the world.  You know what I’m talking about.

You will sing on the subway.   Act in plays your whole life, even when you’ve come to understand that the big-time casting directors are not showing up.   Write for the occasional poetry journal or little production.   Take photographs and post them on your web page.  You will do the thing you’re gifted in because you have to.

And above all—and this is one sign of a gifted writer—you will learn your craft.  Learn your craft.  You will suck up every single piece of valuable insight and knowledge you possibly can to hone your gift and make it more world-worthy.

Welcome to my blog! I hope that a few gifted writers will find their way here, and some talented actors, too—because I will be writing to you as well.  Inside the worlds I inhabit, I have come to understand the business of writing and acting very well.   I know a few things, and I intend to pour them all onto the page.

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