Screenwriting : Quitting is for wimps! by Phillip "The Genuine Article" Hardy

Phillip "The Genuine Article" Hardy

Quitting is for wimps!

I ran across this quote today:

“If you can quit, then quit. If you can't quit, you're a writer.”

~R.A. Salvatore.

Not only is this guy a prolific writer, he's a person that happens to be correct. I keep trying to hammer home this point to my writing friends. If you're not in this for the long haul then you're probably destined for failure. Why only today, one of my dear friends told me about a mutual writing pal who has decided that trying to be a professional screenwriter is too hard. And, this person recently won a coveted top ten screenplay contest, yet has quickly become discouraged. Whereas, I'd be milking that win as a promotional tool like a Holstein on a dairy farm.

I just received a right to shop offer from a well-known agency with an incredible track record. This offer is for a repackaged project I began in 2012 and I thought was dead and buried. That's hardly an overnight success. But I guess it further supports my belief that the folks who succeed at this game are the ones left standing after others have long since left the playing field.

What say you my S32 denizens?

Doug Nelson

Hey Uncle Phil, I been on the field nearly 40 years. May I be excused and go sit on the bench yet?

Brad Johnson

I haven't even quit going to see films much less writing.

Sam Borowski

I once asked Sam Sherman, who produced 40+ films, if he ever thought about quitting during the tough times. He smiled and said to me, "Sure, I thought about it - then I thought, what else would I do?" That's kind of how I feel about it. You have to LOVE doing it SO MUCH that there is NO PLAN B. If I may paraphrase the GREAT John Travolta, he once said there are quicker ways to make a millions bucks. You have to be in this business because you love it. The money will come, but you have to do it, because you love it. Again, I'm paraphrasing here. But, yes, we are in agreement here, Phil, you DO have to be in it for the long haul.

Phillip "The Genuine Article" Hardy

Sam: I do love it. And, the more positive vibes and work you put into the ether, the better.

Sam Borowski

Phil, Once again we are in agreement! I love it, as well. There's nothing else I'd rather do. And I agree about positive vibes and work. GOD BLESS and STAY FRESH! ;) <3 ;)

Charles Mathews

Yeah, you're right. It's not YOU who drive the screenwriting motive but it's the screenwriting that drives YOU, 'cause it's in your blood, part of your DNA and if you really are a true screenwriter, quitting isn't an option because the screenwriting zeal will still wake you at night!

Stephen Thor

Quitting is a matter of viewpoint. If anything or something like a script or writing screenplays or boxing or flying to the moon does not interest you anymore and you are beating a dead horse, then you are not quitting... you are changing your interests, moving on, whatever you want to call it. However, if you quit on something you still desire/want to do and STILL have the capability or means AND the possibility to do so, accomplish or succeed, then yes, quitting means you are actually quitting... a marriage, writing, whatever it is.

Not that I beat horses, mind you...

example of which if you want to go the moon

not quitting... you have a burning desire to go to the moon but you have no eyes or legs or arms and you are 89 years old in ill health.

Julian Jr. Merrier

I think it's logical that if you stick with something there will be progress. I don't see why people have trouble sticking with something, the beginning is always slow or fast depending on the person. But there always will be progress. People just expect it to happen right away and that's not the right mindset. Simply keep going until it happens, don't say you'll quit because you got older or you've spent so many years at it. Just keep going.

But there is another quote, and I'll post it here: "Insanity, is doing the same thing over and over again, expecting things to change." So, I'm kinda at a crossroads here because if you keep going as an aspiring writer with no progress, would that make you insane? Because I sure do feel like it lol. Just another thing I thought I'd put in.

Sam Borowski

Julian, you can keep going, but you SWITCH UP your approach. What you do. How you pursue it. Have you been as proactive as you can? Have you learned producing and banned up with another indie director or producer? Have you written a short that you can fund yourself? Have you taken a trip to L.A. and did your best to organize even one meeting? Have you sought independent financiers for your projects? Or do you simply keep writing scripts, submitting them to agencies or queries to agencies and entering script contests? There are other ways, and so by switching it up, doing more, changing your approach, it usually can only help. Hope this helps. GOD BLESS and STAY FRESH! ;)

Dan Guardino

If people write screenplays just because they want success they'll probably quit when they don't get the results they want. If someone writes screenplays just because they love writing them they'll probably never quit and those are the ones who usually succeed.

Dan Guardino

Sam is right. When I started out I got a WGA Signatory Agent to rep me. I attached a couple of well-known directors to some of my screenplays. That helped open a few doors and I managed to option those two screenplays and ended up getting a few assignments. Judy Norton was attached to one of my screenplays as an actor and we got together to write a couple of adaptations that we are going to produce together. Because of her connections we were able to get a LOI from a distribution company. I am not saying anyone should do what I did but don’t be afraid to try different things because you never know what will pay off or when it will happen.

Jacob Buterbaugh

I wasted a lot of time trying to quit. That's why I'm a late starter. I don't have any unrealistic expectations, I just know that I want to be a writer-director. I love movies, television, filmmaking, and the industry, and I want to be a part of it.

Fortunately for me, I also love B movies, and I have no desire to be a superstar. I just want to be a filmmaker. I always say, I want to be really, really, really good at making bad movies someday. Anyway, I'm not quitting!

Brian Shell

Thank goodness I was too stupid and stubborn to give up... now with 35 books published. Just needed that first open door...

Brian Shell

My bomb-squad neighbor was smoking a stogie, and his wife said, "I thought you were gonna quit." He replied, "Oh hun, no one likes a quitter."

Zlatan Mustafica

Exactly my opinion as well, Uncle Phil. Personally, when I feel that hill is getting even steeper I push harder upwards with Everything I´ve got. To quit? Not an option at all. In fact, I am in preproduction phase of a project I aim to shoot this coming fall/winter. No one wants to fund it? I pay for it myself. No one wants the lead role? I play it myself. No available cameramen? I get help from people who Believe in me. No one will rent out to me the equipment I need (although I offer to pay for the duration of the shoot) because I never directed/produced anything before? I shoot with what I have. Point being, I don´t quit! And WILL get this done. Write on, Uncle Phil!

Dan MaxXx

Jacob Buterbaugh i met Charles Band (full Moon). He's happily successful making low budget horror, i think his library is over 100 horror movies. There's an audience.

Jacob Buterbaugh

Dan - Full Moon rocks. That's pretty much what I want. Low budget horror and comedy.

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