Annnnnnnd we're back.
The roller coaster recap is back ONLINE.
Okay. When last we left our intrepid freelancer he was hip deep in the euphoria that goes along with plans and goals coming together. But, as we all know, this is a roller coaster, so pass the nice gentleman your ticket, slide in, drop the restraining bar and get ready for the ride.
Fingers and toes inside? Good. Let's go:
After long negotiation with some people who seemed not only poised but eager to make one of my deepest dreams come true- namely creating and running my own TV series- the parties who called me in called it off. Here's how it happened without naming names.
Some months ago I was asked by a very legit production company to rework some stalled properties they had but could not, for whatever reason, get going. I did this and had a ball and, while in process on that, inadvertently let slip that I was doing this to another executive at another company who had me in for a general meeting (a general meeting, for the civillians, is when an exec calls you in to sniff you, look you over and see if you've got anything worth discussing further or, God forbid, buying. It's usually creepy and a bit nerve-wracking but, in this case it was awesome).
During the meeting I was asked the ubiquitous, "So what else are you working on?" and this Unnamed Project For Another Company to which I've been alluding came up. This exec was instantly enraptured. The idea was timely. My description of it included the many ways it might also generate extracurricular revenue. I even had a tentative cast in mind. The only thing I didn't have was ownership (technically, I shouldn't have mentioned the project as it wasn't "mine" but, whatever, I had no idea the exec would react that way).
No matter. Phones were rung, conversations were had and, suddenly, this little project that wasn't even technically mine was on the fast track to being an actual show. Rather than get bogged down with too many details and because you can guess the outcome, no, that show didn't get bought or subsequently made. The deal fell apart due to circs beyond my control. I held up my end, folks, believe it.
Yeah. depressing, right? Massive dip on the ol' coaster ride after a pretty steep climb. Well, hold on. It gets lots more interesting.
Over the months following that "dip" there wasn't anything to do really but get back on the proverbial equine. I took meetings, natch, sent out scripts and stories. Blah blah blah. And then, out of the blue, this exec calls me at home and says there's a new deal in the offing with some folks who can't seem to make their own idea work. I had done such a good job on the last go 'round that my name was top of the list for this new thing. Okay. Great. Who doesn't love a call like that, right? Not me.
So I meet these guys and I learn about their project which had stalled because the last guy like me they'd brought in was, apparently, unable to make it go. It was a good idea. Perfect for me. Perfect. It had fantasy elements. It had action. It had a certain pop cultural cache and, if done properly, could easily have been the next Buffy the Vampire Slayer. No joke. I was actually salivating.
The catch? What. You knew there was one, right? Yeah. The catch was these guys, as connected as they were, as solid as they were, seemed unwilling to actually wish to PAY me for my services offering me all manner of stuff on the so-called "back end." For lay people, again, the Back End means "do the work for free now for a huge dividend once the project is completed and sold." It is, as you may have a guessed, a myth. There is no such thing as the Back End. Never. Not ever. Anyone who claims otherwise is lying. Even me.
In this case I had my exec friend vouching for these guys and dangling the lovely "CREATED BY" credit and a producership in front of me should the series [I was preparing to create] actually go. So I said I would do it for a token fee up front (REALLY small) and a rock solid contract for Fabulous Cosmic Power on the mythical back end.
It looked good. Everybody seemed happy. I was geared up to begin writing and I was all "Happy days! Happy days!" on the blog here. You have to understand this. There's a long line and a long long process by which a street level writer, such as myself, gets to advance to the lofty position of Creator/Producer (in this context). It takes a minimum of two or three years usually unless your parents run the studio or network. This was me getting jumped to the front of that line, not via nepotism (which I despise) but due to my actual work. Merit, right? Merit above all.
So, of course, it couldn't happen.
And, of course, it didn't.
They backed out at the last minute leaving myself and, I presume, my exec friend, pretty pissed off at all our wasted time. Big dip, yeah? No more Happy.
During that same time I pitched a stack of ideas to a TV series that I love and not only sold one but was invited to sit in on the coveted Writer's Room with the actual staff. Awesome. That show will remain unnamed for now because other wheels are turning there but, yes, I did sell them a story and this season it looks very much as if I will be the person to write the script. 'coaster up again.
During that time I also joined the AUTHONOMY website but have since left it again as I felt the practices of some of the other "writers" there were less than scrupulous. I'm on WRITERSWRULE.COM now if you want to read some advances of my new stuff.
I also have several comic book projects coming out in the next year and at least four shorts/novelettes poised for pubication as well.
There's more, of course, but I fear the jinx now more than ever so you'll have to wait.
Causes Geoffrey Thorne Supports
Operation USA, Greenpeace, Doctors Without Borders,