Thursday, May 5, 2011

Citrus helmut cat = 1 joke. Only 179 to go!

It's May so you know what that means... it's TV spec script submission time! NBC's Writer's on the Verge and the WB Writer's Workshop submission deadlines are looming and I'm back where I started exactly one year ago: still not a visible minority but still trying really hard to be talented enough so it doesn't matter. It's funny because a few years ago, being a female would have qualified me as a minority in a writer's room, but no more. (Thanks a lot, feminism!) I can't blame my rejection from these programs entirely on their diversity focus (two white women did get in last year), nor am I slamming diversity programs (they are essential in a business that mostly produces shows about white people for white people), but it is a really convenient excuse, don't you think?

For this year's submission, I'm writing a spec script for 30 Rock. I don't know why I thought I'd be able to pull this off. 30 Rock is ridiculously smart. Waaaay smarter than I am. Here's the math: There are roughly 30-35 fast-talking pages in any given 30 Rock script and roughly 6-10 jokes on every page. That means in order to write a 30 Rock script I must come up with -- at minimum -- 180 jokes. 180 jokes! Easy to take that for granted when you're lying on your couch with nothing better to do. Not so easy to take for granted when you're the one writing the show.

The title of the episode I'm currently writing is "Vampire Fish." So far, the script is rough but promising. I'm too terrified to count my jokes at this point, but I'll keep you posted on my progress.

1 comment:

  1. Go, Em. I hope you'll still have some spare jokes for us though!

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