Skip to main content

jobs.craigslist.wrong

thanks to martin rouge for forwarding this one to me:

Hi, I want to write a book but I dont have the patience nor am I terribly detail oriented. I need someone who can take my idea/s and make them come to life on paper. My wish is to make this into a book or play or screenplay. Its a kind of steamy story, so I want a writer that can bring out every emotion when reading this. I want to collaborate with the writer, I dont have funds right now, but we will bound by a contract and split everything if it gets to market, or we can discuss it further. Look forward to hearing from you. 

i keep rereading this, trying to decide how best to reply. of course, i'm probably not going to reply at all, but i do think that this person deserves a reply and this is more or less how i think it should read:

dear steamy idea guy,

i'm assuming you're a guy, because i can't really imagine a woman saying that she didn't have the patience to write out an idea that seemed important to her. you don't have the patience? seriously? i suggest that you see a professional about this impatience of yours because, honestly, it sounds like it might present a bit of a problem in your life.

now, moving on to the attention to detail. the grammar and spelling errors in your brief craigslist post make it obvious that detail isn't a big thing for you, but good on ya for admitting it up front. you know which people are really detail-oriented? almost no one. being detail-oriented can come naturally to some, but for most of us, it's something we're forced into by circumstance. it sounds like circumstances haven't gotten to you yet. that's awesome for you. but i suspect that at some point, being conscientious about details is going to prove important in your life and you'll acquire the skill in a hell of a hurry. perhaps you should consider getting a jump on things.

as far as the rest of us are concerned, attention to detail is often directly proportional to our interest in a project and the pressure we're under to get it right. i make spelling mistakes on this blog all the time, because it's my personal thing. when someone is paying me money and my livelihood depends on it, i'm a little more careful about giving it that second read-through. such is life.

which leads me to this whole money situation thing. you don't have any. what exactly is my incentive to work on this, given that you obviously can't pay me? some vague deal that we'll work out "if it gets to market"? what market? do you have contacts? have you spoken to anyone? did you know that professionals are often able to generate interest in a project before having a manuscript ready when the idea is that good? hell, you don't even seem to know what form the idea should take. having something published as a book is very different than having it produced as a play is very different than making a movie. it doesn't sound like you've put much thought into this idea at all.

and for that matter, if i'm writing the story, investing it with all the emotions and have to play a major role in marketing it to the publishers, theatre companies and film studios you obviously don't know, what do i need you for anyway? you know what they call people who write stories based on ideas they hear from other people? authors. playwrights. screenwriters. that's right. the most famous writers in the world were usually just really good at retelling stories they'd heard from someone else- often stories that were handed down through generations.

shakespeare? never wrote an original libretto in his life. akira kurosawa made "ran", one of the most beautiful films in history, which is a retelling of shakespeare retelling a story that he'd heard from other people.

which basically makes you the anonymous chump who didn't have the talent [or the patience, or the attention to detail] to write it for himself. is that how you want to go down [or not go down] in history?

you might think i'm being cruel. well, maybe you have a point. you wouldn't be the first person to think that about me. but here's the thing: if you have a really great idea, if it's something that you can see on stage or on film or on the printed page, you need to run with that. if the idea is strong enough, you'll find it in you to write it, because having that creative spark means having the passion to see the project through. if you can't find it in yourself to feel motivated to finish it, then i'd warrant what you have is a product. perhaps it's saleable, but if it is, you should be able to demonstrate that by generating some interest from  potential distributors/ producers/ publishers. if you can't contribute either of these things, what you're contributing is background noise. useless static that goes nowhere until it's channeled through a real artist, who will have no use for you. sorry dude, but that's it. i have a dozen wonderful ideas a day in how to fix the sorry roads of montreal, but i don't make money from any of them because i don't have the foggiest notion of how to make them into something real.

do yourself a favour. sit down and try to write what you have in your brain. just write the whole idea out, without trying to fit it in a specific format. if you can't even do that much, then i think you need to ask yourself how incredible the idea is in the first place. if you can, then i think you might discover that you're able to do a lot more of this by yourself than you might have originally believed.

yours sincerely,
jaded cynical writer lady.

Comments

as long as you're here, why not read more?

write brain

i was talking to a friend of mine about coffee, specifically about our mutual need for coffee, yesterday and, literally as i was in the middle of a thought, an idea occurred to me that i felt like i had to note. so there i am, scribbling a note to myself that was really just a word salad of related terms, which i later transformed into a weird but more comprehensible note that i could refer to later. [i don't want another beatriz coca situation on my hands.] i feel like this idea isn't a story on its own, but something that i could incorporate into a larger project, which is good, because i have a few of those.

now, of course, i need to sit down and do research on this, because it's become terribly important to me that the details of this weird little idea that i'm planning on incorporating into a larger thing be totally plausible, even though no one but me is ever going to care. i'm increasingly convinced that the goal of every writer is to find someone who will t…

presidenting is hard :: these people are not your friends

hello mr. president! a while back, i promised that i would periodically be giving you some advice on how to do your job, since you seem a little unclear on how everything works. i didn't mean to go so long between missives, but the fact is that i've been busy and you're administration has been in overdrive giving me things to write about. what i've realised is that many of those things are ones i can't help you with: if you or anyone in your immediate circle worked with russians to compromise the 2016 election, that shit is done. robert mueller is going to find that out, because he's the kind of person who looks like the theme from dragnet just automatically starts playing every time he enters a room. so that's your problem. i'm just here to talk to you about what you can do now that you are, by law, the president. because, while chief detective mueller is doing his thing, we all need to live with your decisions. i'm even less happy about that than…

making faces :: women's rites

the magic of the internet, specifically the magic of instagram, recently brought me in contact with rituelle de fille, a new brand [launched in 2014] and completely new to me, although some of their products have apparently received plaudits from the media. their branding reminds me very much of the early years of illamasqua: a well-edited collection of colour products [there are no base or complexion products as of yet, except blush] with an emphasis on including shades that are daring and unexpected. 

i picked up three products, which are offered individually or as a set, as the "fleur sauvage" collection, inspired by "lush overgrowth, the deadly allure of carnivorous plants, and the strange chromatic language whispered between flowers and pollinators". there is no price difference between buying the items separately or individually, it's just a matter of selected partnering [and i believe all three products were launched together in spring 2015]. there are tw…