Friday, July 06, 2007

Pens Down!

For anyone who still thinks the writer’s life is the life for them, here’s some cheery news from the Screenwriters Festival at Cheltenham, as reported in Broadcast now.

Facing rejection trying to break in to the industry is bad enough for most, but apparently once writers are in and making a name for themselves, clinical depression and the prospect of a shortened lifespan are amongst the joys waiting for them. Psychologist Raj Persaud, who spoke at a session on writer’s block, suggested unhappiness among writers may happen because they are driven by their emotions.

All you can do is remember what Horace Walpole said:

“Life is a comedy for those who think... and a tragedy for those who feel.”


At 5:14 pm, Blogger Jaded and Cynical said...

I'd already reluctantly come to the conclusion that trying to pursue a writing career in this country is pointless.

It's too hard to break in, it takes too long to really establish a career, there's zero job security, and most of the work that's available is pointless hack-work anyway (no kid ever dreamt of writing an episode of HolbyBlue.)

Now, in addition to all that, it turns out writers end up depressed and go to an early grave. Talk about giving a guy no encouragement.

For a brief while I considered having a serious stab at screenwriting, but I've chickened out. I start a very conventional and very boring new job next week (so less time for comments here, GD). My inner-child is sulking and accusing the rest of me of selling out on all those long-cherished hopes and dreams. My outer-adult, on the other hand, is heaving a sigh of relief that the mortgage will get paid next month.

Good luck to those of you determined to fly in the face of all commonsense and reason. Some of you will make it. And when you do, in three years time, give me a call if you need help with your taxes.

At 5:28 pm, Blogger English Dave said...

Fuck you, you've all got it in for me! Sweet death where is thy sting?

At 5:51 pm, Blogger Jaded and Cynical said...

Don't worry, Dave. Given that you've been doing this for a few years, there can't be long to go.

Maybe it's time for the Writers' Guild to stop calling itself a union and to start re-branding itself as a patients' support group.

At 6:16 pm, Blogger Good Dog said...

J&C, good luck with the job. We're off filming a medical symposium on Tuesday in case you think what you're doing is boring.

And... it's in Birmingham.

ED, hey, sandwiched between the first published work and what I'm doing now, I worked for well over a decade in animation. Someone has it in for me.

At 6:27 pm, Blogger English Dave said...


The WG is fabulous for those who don't need anything. Where were they when a PACT board member {SHED PRODUCTIONS}paid a writer half the going rate for a an hour of network primetime?

'Kin nowhere.

At 6:40 pm, Blogger Good Dog said...


I remember you saying that, did anything get a good thrashing for that?

No other production companies have followed suit have they?

At 7:02 pm, Blogger English Dave said...

No one got a thrashing and a well known prodco have since followed up by reneaging on a signed contract saying they would pay only pay half because they decided they couldn't afford it???

At 7:06 pm, Blogger Good Dog said...

Oh, that's sweet. Good grief.

At 7:41 pm, Blogger English Dave said...

I feel a rant coming on. You know where I am! Maybe we will have a pint next week with the billman.

At 8:05 pm, Blogger Good Dog said...


Maybe I haven't been paying attention, but I don't. Drop me a contact number or email through my profile email link. I would be good to finally meet up for a drink.

At 8:53 pm, Blogger English Dave said...

I don't know what a profile email link thingy is. Seriously. But if Big Bill is there Monday then so will I. Be good to see you.

At 9:36 pm, Blogger Good Dog said...

Actually, I should have given you the email address straight off:

At 1:28 am, Blogger Sal said...

Hoorah! With any luck, this should put off lots of people who will go "uh oh if I become a writer then I'll get really depressed so I'll not bother" - therefore less competition for the rest of us. Yay! Roll on lots more pop psychologists talking about depressed creative types!

At 3:13 pm, Blogger maya twersky said...

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