Just over a year ago, I went to a Writers' Guild event about blogging, and became a convert. Of the crop of blogs that rose up after that event, I'm only aware of Helen Smith's and mine that have survived - but please feel free to post a comment if you were there, and are still posting, I'd love to hear from you. Helen has written a lovely post about her blog birthday, and also a perceptive article for the Guild, which she links to from that page.
I agree with Helen: the best part of blogging is that it has allowed me to meet so many other writers. Not many producers, but a lot of writers; though, one producer who had got my name from Screen South, but had dismissed me as not mature enough for her project because she thought that 'new screenwriter' equated to 'fourteen years old', did give me an interview after seeing a picture on this blog of grizzled old me, with my baby son. I still didn't get the gig, though.
I'm only aware of that one direct job opportunity, but the indirect benefits are massive: the confidence boost of turning up to do some networking knowing there will be a friendly face or two in the crowd, should not be underestimated. The advanced warning of schemes, comps and events; the useful information of the craft expounded by other bloggers; the crystallising of thoughts on my own approach by posting about my own writing; the availability of a willing group of peer reviewers; all these are wonderful things. Praise be to the Blog! And happy birthday to this one.
It seems a good time to revisit the goals I set myself in April last year, and see how I've got on. Here goes:
1. Get into the imdb. Nope - still not there, but now that the sound issues with 'Lent' are dealt with, and hoping it gets some decent distribution, I should be able to get my name in there soon.
2. Get another of my short film scripts produced. A couple of possibilities are still ongoing.
3. Get an agent. Haven't even tried, to be honest. I'm hoping by building up a portfolio of scripts, and getting more commissioned and produced work, that I'll be in a stronger position to approach some agents later on.
4. Get an afternoon play commissioned for Radio 4.No commissions, but some good scripts written in the last year, and some possible leads with producers.
5. Apply to the BBC Writer’s Academy.Applied. Didn't get in. Applying again this year.
6. Write an episode of Doctors. Nope, though I am writing more one-off thirty minute dramas, to learn, and to use as examples of my work.
So, lots of work still to do. If only I'd added 'Get commissioned to write a feature script', I could have ticked one off. I shall add one to the list:
7. Get more commissions to write feature scripts.
And I'll report back on progress in another year's time*
* I will be posting in between then and now too, of course: I know that should be obvious, but my posting rate recently may have caused some to doubt it!!!