A thought on pitching…

Not that it’s easy to get in the room where you actually pitch.
But.

Even if you don’t, you still will have to tell your story over and over and over. Not a real pitch, but you, telling your story and making it clear and simple. To your readers, investors, actors, crew people. It never ends.

And this is how I do it.

Get the pitch as succinct as possible. Ten minutes, tops. Even for a detailed pitch.

When you get your details pared down, character descriptions pared down, and in the right order, etc… and you’re going to tell it… you have three choices.

Read from the pages. Boring = death.
Memorize it. Fraught with peril.
Do it off bullet points.

If you pare down the pitch and read it over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over to yourself…

And to other people. Crucial. You have to have someone to say it to. “The Observer Effect” changes the nature of your approach to the material, and a warm body will freak you out. Better to freak out now than when you tell your story For Real.

And out loud.

Slowly you will come close to memorizing it.

Once you’ve kinda got it, take the document, bold face or highlight a phrase for each important thought… and you have a roadmap to get through the event. Because you’ve got it more or less memorized, you’re looking at the people and telling them a story. But it’s not totally memorized, as you check your road map to make sure you’re on track as you walk through the highlighted pages.

You’ll say what you want to say.
You’ll maintain eye contact.
It will be a conversation, as you won’t be buried in your pages.

And you’ll be relaxed because the highlighted pages become Dumbo’s Magic Feather… keeping you in the air. And the person you’re telling it to will get a sense of your personality as well as the story. Success!

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Filed under Screenwriting, The Business, Writing Process

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