Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Tales from the Script Pitch

I just got home from the InkTip Pitch Summit in L.A. What FUN!

I hate sales, but love to tell stories. I’ve always equated pitching with “script selling.” If I had to choose between doing a sales pitch and sticking pins in my eyes, I’d be blind. But pitching isn't about the immediate sale any more than dating is about getting married immediately and setting up housekeeping. It's more about allowing both parties to get to know each other to determine if they think they want to work together.

You'll hear much more about the Summit in later posts. I'm still digging out from my pile of notes, 1-sheet and script requests, and contact information while trying to re-adjust to a 3-hour time difference and picking up my life where I left it.
However, I had to share my favorite story from the Summit:

Photo by Kenn W. Kiser, from www.MorgueFile.com
Four biker-looking producers are sitting at 1 table. I'm gonna pitch them my dark comedy. The guy before me (sports jacket, attache) passes out his very slick 1-sheets and leaves. All are interested in what he had to say.

When he's gone, the most badass looking of the 4 (black T-shirt, multi-colored tattoos) says quietly, "That guy nearly ran me over in the parking lot this morning."

"No!" Everyone says.

He nods. "Yeah. Got out of his car yelling at me. Cussed me up one side and down the other."

Like clockwork, the other three tore up the 1-sheets into tiny bits & tossed them away.

You just never know: the tough-guy biker might be the producer you're dying to meet! He might be the one you need to give your career the boost you've been waiting for.

In short, common courtesy may be the best pitching tool in your belt! And judging any human book by its cover is a long step off a short and slippery slope...

Be nice. Karma is real. So is poetic justice. It's not all about you. The publishing world and the entertainment industry are full of people who are ready and willing to listen to what you've got to say. But remember: You're pitching yourself as much as your story. If they know from personal experience that you're a self-centered boor, the best pitch in the world won't get you through the door.


Katharine Grubb said...

I was hoping this anecdote would lead to your personal victory! Oh well.

Love the dating/marriage metaphor -- I think that's right on. We shouldn't take it personally if the chemistry isn't there.

Nice reminder. Thanks!

Ami Hendrickson said...

Ah, it's early for me to determine victory or not. However, the aforementioned table *did* request my stuff, too. :D

Me: "You're not going to tear it in tiny pieces when I leave, are you."

Them (laughing): "No. You're safe."

Further bulletins as events warrant...

RedHeadedQuilter said...

So this is where you went off too. I look forward to more updates! :)

alexia said...

A good example of why you should never be rude to anyone in public... I wonder if he even remembered it was the same guy!