Expectancy and Fear

Have you ever gotten the encouraging news that something you want so badly, something you’ve worked so hard for, just might come to pass? And as much as you effort to keep at bay the thoughts of it becoming reality for fear of being disappointed, there’s just too many seconds in every minute and too many minutes in every hour and too many hours in every day to not cultivate some expectation? Well, good listeners, I’m here to tell you that, despite all internal resistance, I have. In fact, it’s happening right now.

About a week ago I sent out a bunch of letters to a few agencies introducing them to my screenplay Outside Men in the hopes that they would find it interesting enough to request the complete file. A few days ago I got an email from one of those agencies. That in itself was exciting. But if you consider that it was the number one company on my dream list of representation, the situation takes on a whole new layer of “are you fucking kidding me?”

Outside Men is a screenplay of which I am extremely proud. It has everything I would love to see in a considerately mixed genre picture and is structured in a way that feeds me chunks of shocking goodness in just the right measure to ensure a long-lasting, rich taste. It’s weighty, but brisk. And it has some of my favorite characters I’ve ever created. However, I set it aside in my mind because I thought it was maybe too sprawling for some of the smaller agencies I’d been rubbing up against to consider as a project. I figured that someday I would pull it out from the bottom of my drawer and hand it to a first time director who had inherited a trust fund and a lust for zombies, World War II, and eskimos. Yes, I said eskimos. It works, actually.

So I sent off the .pdf and faxed in the signed submission form and set about waiting, deciding to put the whole thing out of my mind and get going on the next one while researching the one to follow that. And that’s exactly what I’m doing. But you know…dammit if I don’t visit the website of the agency everyday and marvel at their creatively couched genius. Their projects have all been unique, edgy in a number of interesting ways, and some of them are just plain brilliant in concept and execution the likes of which one would hope all time and monetary investments would be. Their philosophy on working with and developing writers couldn’t be any more ideal and they seem dedicated to making and assisting the creation of films and TV simply because they have a passion for good shit. Blimey, I even love the colors they use on their homepage! I would redecorate my entire condo with them, to be honest, and I think I just might.

So, before this sounds like a diary entry about this really cool dude in school who everybody likes and who I hope invites my to his supercool party and stuff, let me say that it’s very difficult not to start dreaming when the whole reason you write is because you can’t help but dream. I mean, what are writers but craftsman who look ahead and imagine how things could be? This certainly may not go down, and to be honest, if it doesn’t it’s already too late not to be a little crushed. But at least I will have learned a lot about my ideas, my query letter style and what this agency responds to. And that in itself is fantastic because no matter how small the validation, if it helps you believe in yourself another .001 %, that can really help when you suffer your next crisis of confidence.

You know, there’s a writer’s strike looming over Hollywood like something wicked this way coming over the crackling cornfields of a haunted, Midwestern hollow, and for important personal reasons I really hope it doesn’t happen. But if it does, perhaps the timing is finally right.

About S. Norton

Writer, marketer, musician.
This entry was posted in Screenwriting, Writing. Bookmark the permalink.

1 Response to Expectancy and Fear

  1. Mels says:


    Always believed and still do………this has the makings of some very good news. I’ll check back looking for trailer……..

    Love reading your blog – you’ve amazed me since Sharon’s class. Rock on!

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