Screenwriting : It (usually) takes more than great script to get representation by Lee Jessup

Lee Jessup

It (usually) takes more than great script to get representation

Last week, one of my clients had a meeting with a reputable manager based on his solid pilot script. But when the manager asked for a second writing sample, it went swiftly downhill. Check out my latest blog post - including excerpts from an actual manager email - about why it's so important to build a stellar body of work before you get out there...

David Kotzebue

I have 28 finished, all great, of course. Another couple dozen under construction. Could I send you some samples?

David Kotzebue

They're posted on here, btw.

Christopher Joseph

Checking out your services, very impressive! Take anybody on pro bono?? Ahem ahem wink wink, I can provide chocolate! LOL

Lee Jessup

@christopher thanks for the kind words! Right now all my pro bono slots are full regretfully, but I'd be more than happy to let you know if and when one opens up again!

Monique Mata

Lee, is writing in not-like genre a disadvantage when strategizing about representation? ps. And can you elaborate on how one would get on your pro bono list?

Dustin Bowcott

I don't even keep count. I have around seven features, I think... with another one I'm finishing up now. All done in 14 months. 5 or 6 shorts too. I've written horrors, thrillers, dramas, sci-fi and now a comedy. My problem is that I have too many ideas... I have 24 more ideas to work through pinned to my storyboard... so I tend to work to a first draft and move onto the next idea. I need reigning in. The work I do for producers though is a lot more thorough. On one short that is being produced I've done 7 drafts. I'm doing a feature with him too, already handed him the 160 page vomit draft, such is our relationship, I wanted to show him everything that was in my head. Purely because he gets the best out of me. He's not happy with things that'll just 'do'. It has to be perfect. The way I was brought up, as my Dad was a writer too, he just never did anything about it, wrote for pleasure, himself and maybe a few friends. I have that same bug, and he knew it. He often imparted nuggets of wisdom, and one of the things he told me was that when I am ready, people will come to me. I don't enter any competitions, nor do I approach agents or managers. I don't kiss anyone's arse or butter anyone up, in fact I make myself out to be a bit of an arsehole at times... I'm not afraid to push people away. The reason for that is that I want to work with only serious people. I'm not interested in getting on projects that will fail. Serious people look for others that can get the job done, they don't care about the frills. That's how I am too.. your race, sexuality, politics, religion... none of that matters to me. Are you a serious, take-no-shit, producer that demands perfection? That's who I want to work with. Everyone else can screw themselves. As for Hollywood.. well I'm not really trying for that. I want to make it in my own country first. Only one of my scripts is told with a multi-national voice. The rest of my scripts are British. For me it is far more about success than money. I really just need my work to be appreciated. Isn't that the best buzz of all? When somebody, another living person reacts emotionally to your work?

Rachael Saltzman

Yeah. The first question will usually be 'what else you got'? Agents don't represent a script, they rep a writer.

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