A year and a half ago I wrote a new script, a comedic pilot called "The Other F Word." I had previously written four-produced indie features, but this story was episodic in nature, so it was a whole new world, as none of my relationships were in television. "The Other F Word" is a comedic coming of age series about four women who deal with the hights and lows of mid-life as they reinvent themselves now that their kids are grown.
I discovered Stage 32 and after joining Happy Writers, I perfected the craft of pitching the script and took Skype sessions. As a result, I had a good success rate and found Executives responded well, often requesting and reading my script.
Simultaneously, I had the script covered by Matt Kniaz through Stage 32 Happy Writers coverage service, who at the time worked on a television-packaging desk at CAA. Matt and I connected during the one-hour consultation facilitated by Stage 32. He liked the script and gave me notes that helped to make it more marketable and a better writing sample.
Matt left to become a Manager at Industry Entertainment and though he predominately represents actors, he believed in me and the project and took me on as a client in a literary sense and as a producer.
Over the course of the year, Matt helped me to secure pitch meetings with networks and producers. While we didn’t ultimately set up the project on this first go around – it’s a marathon, not a sprint - many of the executives responded positively to my writing and left the door open for me to pitch other projects.
Manager Matt Kniaz met Stage 32 writer Cathya Jentis through a Stage 32 Happy Writers script coverage consultation while he was at CAA. He now represents her at Industry Entertainment
I also learned a lot about the evolving business of ‘television’ – both short and long form. All meetings, no matter the outcome have made me a better writer.
At the end of pitch season, with Matt’s blessings as well as that of several of the executives who encouraged me to ‘find a way,’ I re-purposed the script and started production of the show as a web series.
It made sense as “The Other F Word” has a highly targeted, easy to reach demographic – women 45+ - who are under-served in terms of episodic content.
Also, I had already begun a grassroots campaign while writing the script to connect with the influencers, who not only helped me craft and validate my stories, but who would help me to promote the show. It’s never too soon to connect with your intended audience.
I have always been very resourceful in finding ways to keep a production budget low, while keeping production value high and based on the merits of the script, I was able to attract a very talented cast that includes: Steve Guttenberg (Cocoon, Police Academy), Michael Boatman (The Good Wife, Spin City), Reiko Aylesworth (24, CSI), Judy Gold (Jim Gaffigan Show) & Ben Bailey (Cash Cab). I'm a happy writer happy to announce that we are now live on Amazon, and it all started here, with Stage 32.
And now…. round two begins; and our journey continues. If our show is well received and finds an audience, more doors and opportunities will present themselves. Meetings are already in the works.
That said, I’ve just polished up a comedic feature script called “Identity Crisis”. At the end of the day, a writer’s got to keep writing and as a wise professor at UCLA Film School once said: “The more scripts you write, the more your odds of success improve.”
Support your fellow Stage 32er Caytha Jentis by congratulating her below and watching The Other F Word Series on Amazon!
About Caytha Jentis:
Caytha is a writer, director and producer. She now lives in NYC and is a member of the PGA, WGAE and NYWIFT. Caytha was recently selected as one of “Good Housekeeping Magazine’s” 50 over 50 as an adventure-seeker. “The Other F Word” is available to stream on Amazon or at www.theotherfwordseries.com
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