Screenwriting : Covid-19 impacts on your projects by Rebecca D Robinson

Rebecca D Robinson

Covid-19 impacts on your projects

Has the reliance on on-line interaction during the pandemic helped or hurt your projects? How specifically have you been impacted?

Phillip "The Gent" Hardy

No. I've had more action in 2020 than any year before. Many production companies are reading material during the downtime. I've had multiple requests from ten different companies. Best of luck to you.

Jason Mirch

Hey Rebecca D Robinson! It is great to have you here! I am the Director of Script Services for Stage 32. I have to say that since the pandemic/lockdown the interaction online has gone through the roof! There have been a ton of new connections between members worldwide and there have been a record number of meeting requests from executives for writers through Stage 32 Script Services.

I have actually enjoyed being able to get on Zoom meetings and Skype calls rather than having to get in a car and drive an hour and a half for a 30-minute meeting! I think I may just keep this up after we're able to move about. How about you? What has your experience been?

Dan MaxXx

I've attended more webinars in these 3 -4 months than my entire life. There is a wealth of free webinars almost every day. Makes me wonder why all this access wasn't free, pre-pandemic.

Rebecca D Robinson

Hi Jason, yes, we've spoken before on email. I got tepid results back from Christina Pickwick re my 10-pager, so am busily revising and will send it out to Ewan Dunbar per your recommend and that of several other people or whoever else you think might be interested, It really is a niche, big budget project in the genre of The Last Kingdom, so somebody with deep pockets and connections across English and French museums, government (because it's dealing with a French national treasure) and production companies would be the perfect suitor. I've approached the British Museum, (they showed a little interest) and have pitched someone who wrote and produced for BBC History. I'll keep plugging away! Would love to have a Zoom meeting or two!

Jason Mirch

Yes, Rebecca D Robinson of course! I am glad we're connected here now too! Ewan is a great guy and a solid executive. I am sure he will have excellent insights for you.

Rebecca D Robinson

Dan MaxXx, I missed the memo after the Festival was cancelled in April, didn't realize that everything had moved online and so slogged on by myself for several months feeling lonely and lost. I've been on this site about 10 days now and it's like finding an oasis in the desert. I'm just getting up to speed with all the resources while simultaneously overhauling my historical drama and helping another writer in the same genre! All of a sudden I am very busy! Hoping to add some meetings with producers and directors to further things along.

Dan MaxXx

Rebecca D Robinson if you got nothing to do today and tomorrow, Variety is hosting an online tv summit. They got an all-star team of writers, producers, showrunners

https://events.variety.com/event/b4f9f542-8df9-4130-a7d2-ad9372a40316/we...

Rebecca D Robinson

Thank you, Dan. I just registered. I'm fully engrossed in writing right now, but will go back and look at the sessions tonight!

William Martell

I have also had companies request and read scripts, since they are bored and stuck at home.

Elsewhere I have been posting the script sales and deals during lockdown. There have been some, including a big deal for a friend of mine.

Rebecca D Robinson

That is great! I hope to have good news this year, too.

Terry Spears

I just got lucky on the timing. My previous film was released in Jan, my current film is just now in the last stages of post so it's easy for me to oversee that, and I have a few in development, but nothing on the schedule right now. So I have been able to essentially stay home and work on the things I needed to be working on anyway.

Rebecca D Robinson

You are lucky! I'm not where you are - hope to be in a year or so!

Craig D Griffiths

Production has stopped on a film and a second has started due to insurance issues. They can’t get insurance in a pandemic.

Otherwise some producers are getting their ducks in a row ready for a reopen.

Rebecca D Robinson

Yes, this is what I've learned from different companies. I'm hoping to position myself for when things reopen.

Kiril Maksimoski

...just to lazy to write right now...so covid or no-covid, I have an issue...

Rebecca D Robinson

Kiril, I hear ya. I was lazy/depressed when this whole thing hit, then I was nudged into starting again and it really has been a salvation for me. I find I'm expressing all kinds of feelings in my writing - frustration, anger, loneliness - and it's helped me feel better. I encourage you to try to write again. It will make you feel better, I promise.

Paul Grammatico

Had a literary agent tell me that, due to the issues associated with the pandemic, he wasn't taking on new clients. So I think it has had some impact.

Rebecca D Robinson

C.J. I hear ya. I try not to get discouraged when I read posts that people are doing great because that's not been my reality! The LSF was to have been my big Hail Mary toss of the football and it's getting canceled really set me back emotionally and it took some time for me to get my mojo back. Happily, I have finally channeled my inner muse so that I can write again and I was able to meet a deadline that I set for myself. I wish I had all these deals to talk about, but I just jumped into the deep end of the pool, so I'm still floating around trying to get my bearings. Thanks for being honest, CJ.

Rebecca D Robinson

Paul, that has been my experience, too. I solicited a couple of production companies that were supposed to be at LSF in April and they acted like they had no idea what I was talking about when I wanted to pitch them. Weird and frustrating. But I am soldiering on!

Doug Nelson

CJ - I understand completely. I've halted all production work for now and will wait until we exit the tunnel or smash head on with the oncoming train. Since I'm retired, this shutdown doesn't bother me much - but I do feel badly for others needing to earn a living.

Rebecca D Robinson

Thank you for sharing this Doug!

Erick Freitas

I've been working as a freelancer for over 10+ years now in the film industry, and if someone didn't learn that saving their money is the only way to survive as a freelancer, I'd hate to be them right now.

John Ellis

I've been doing a lot of writing and re-writing. I've gotten more read requests in 3 months than I have in the past 3 years - but that isn't saying much because anything is better than zero (that's how many I had in that 3-yr period).

The other thing I've done is really, really look at the science/data of the virus; what are the truths about the virus. And, honestly, it ain't nearly as bad as the media is painting. I'm not going to go into a detailed discussion - the post would go on for pages and pages.

Most of the health officials' and politicians' statements fall into the category of reactionary (and fear-mongering IMO) - BUT it's their jobs to keep the public safe, so I'm not angry about their statements.

But, as I said, when you look at all the research, the science, the statistical data (and compare it with each other because much of it is contradictory), it's clear that this "pandemic" should not terrify people. Caution and prudence, sure - but it's not a zombie apocalypse, nor any kind of society-ending event (nor does it have the potential to be so).

So I'm soldiering on, planning on a quick shoot in October (with satisfactory protocols in place), and looking forward to when this has all past (and it will, I believe).

Rebecca D Robinson

Thanks for the information, John. Good luck to you!

Dan Guardino

I finished up one screenplay I am co-producing and I started an adaption I've been putting off for two long.

Rebecca D Robinson

Me too! Finished one in a series and jumping into part two.

Christopher Phillips

It wasn’t much of a change at first, the Twitter folks were still the Twitter folks. But between the webinars and Twitter and Instagram and all the message boards... social media has become a distraction from getting any work done. Fellowship is important, but it’s easy to use it to avoid the actual work.

Rebecca D Robinson

Yes! I’m writing all day today...no fun stuff.

Carl Pepper

All work and no play Rebecca means ya might end up like Jack N. sitting at a bar with a creepy bartender named Lloyd servering tumblers of Scotch...lol Got tennis balls too...;-)

Rebecca D Robinson

I play baseball with my cat when I need a break...went for a walk today and actually did a decent workout! I feel much better.

Carl Pepper

Baseball with the cat ;) Good for you!

Tasha Lewis

I got a great story idea. Me hanging onto a tree while a hurricane like wind and rain almost blows me into traffic, While being drenched in water and my umbrella blows upside down...………….,, True story. I need to think of a genre and title.

Rebecca D Robinson

Thriller? Weather Channel true story?

Carl Pepper

Hi Tasha, Perhaps a thought for the premise of why you're hanging from the tree in a hurricane. Is unknown until the end of the pilot, movie being, that you had made a bet with a group of people/person for a hugh amount of $$$$ if you survive. You do survive after being beat to crap until the eye of the storm comes briefly. At this point, we see you are bleeding, broken bone or two but we only hear your thoughts cheering yourself on.

The eye passes, you really hold on being beat to crap again.

The hurricane passes, you are barely hanging on as the people/person show up to say," you win, here the $$$$ and then you die"!

Just a thought for you....

Carl Pepper

Hey Rebecca, did your cat yesterday up its batting average? ;-)

Rebecca D Robinson

You should see her, Carl - she bats things out of the air and knocks them down the stairs! Balls, stuffed mousies, fluffy balls - it's quite amusing!

Carl Pepper

GM Rebecca, I bet she is! Cats are a trip indeed and quite fun to play games with until they give you that " I'm done look"! Especially when a lil catnip is in play, then keep your distance...lol

I'm writing a new scene today in my script that is thought provoking and hugh in scope. The build up to this point for this character is intense. A true event that is and was intriguing....Whats on tap today for you?

Rebecca D Robinson

Hi Carl, well yesterday I did my final edits on Geva's Way Part One. My beta reader is my son, and he's also a writer and very smart about plot and character arcs. He gave me a gold star, so that feels good! I've already begun Part Two and really have to do some serious outlining. I'm also writing about true events, some very dramatic, so it can be a bit of a rush to write those scenes. Good luck and don't let the emotions flood you too much.!

TJ Berry

One of the productions I'm helping to finance has been tightened up per new industry guidelines to keep cast and crew safe (yay!) which means I can't be on set during shooting (boo).

Tasha Lewis

Thank you for your suggestions. I'm thinking Faith Based or Inspiration since if I had let go yesterday, I would have been blown into oncoming traffic and could have died. I have been sharing a promotion for supporting Climate Change with a photo of a tree. I noted that trees can save your life in more ways than one. When I work on my outline, I will explore the ideas and topics more in the lounges.

Rebecca D Robinson

Did you ever see The Impossible about the Christmas tsunami in Thailand? Your story immediately brought that story to mind...

Carl Pepper

Hi Rebecca congrats on starting Part Two of your four part mini series. It is rewarding to have loved ones, friends validate your labor of love in fact! Good for you. I research then bullet point my scenes for my script outlines which is labor intensive but very settling and reassuring knowing that you know your onions. If you saw my short synopsis of my script, the first day I posted here, one of the," culturally different son's was my Father". An extrodinary, very talented man that was a great Father, mentor and best friend.

Cheers to the emotions thought...

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