That’s a good idea, right? — Premature story pitching

You got this plot line. Oh you love it. It’s great. Original. Exciting. You have to tell someone. RIGHT NOW!

As soon as the words come out of your mouth, you realize you have nothing. You can see it in the person’s face. It sucks. That original, exciting idea, suddenly deflates.

Next time this happens, do everyone a favor and keep it to yourself.

This has happened to me on multiple occasions.  Especially when I had a little too much to drink. Cause when you drink, things are always more exciting than they really are. I would have this, what I thought, was a brilliant idea…. and as soon as it came out. I regretted it immediately. Wow– That doesn’t sound anything like what I was thinking.  Visually you can see it. But sometimes words can’t explain what you’re thinking.

Premature story pitching is the best way to kill your story’s confidence and put it into shambles.

Your story needs to have confidence. You need to have confidence in the story. You need to believe in your story. Without confidence you end creating shallow writing–see Action Movies.

I learned to keep my ideas to myself. If one popped in my head, I’d silently jot it down in my handy-dandy notebook and carry on. It would sit in there. Growing. Developing, eventually sprouting legs, enabling it to walk.
Now once it started to walk, that’s when you start feeding the story. You do some research. You dig deep. Find that theme. You find that passion.

Timing is everything. You have to be your own judge to know when you can find someone  and say ” Hey, I have this idea….”

You’ll know right away if they like it or they don’t. Sure they may think it’s dumb. Or they may think it’s brilliant. But at least you went out there with guns and ammo and not just binoculars and a knife.

I use my friends and family all the time to test the waters on the story. Reading people’s minds is something you have to learn to do. Do they really like it? Or are they just saying that? I noticed when people like the idea, they add-on to it. Like suddenly they want to be involved. That’s a good sign. Or suddenly they mention it out of the blue or at a later time they bring it up. This too is a good sign. If the general public thinks it’s a good idea, hopefully that producer, actor, director will too.

Either way, if you’ve gotten this far, to the pitching part, then I believe the story is worth writing. It’s an indication that it’s not just a thought, but an actual idea. One that you can mold, grow and eventually write.

-REH

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