As you can see, I’m a unicorn.
So...I’m searching for “my people.” What does this mean?
Like all of us, I yearn for belonging and acceptance. I am so lucky to have found it in my personal life, with my wife and kids!
When I was a kid myself, loving Star Trek and film scores on Martha’s Vineyard, it was very hard to find “my people.” Even at Star Trek conventions, I was taken aback by how much fans seemed to just want to memorize trivia and buy collectibles, and not really express what the storylines meant to them.
For film scores—well, I found my people. I had to make my own magazine to do it, but I found them (you). And it’s been great!
So now, as a middle-aged adult, I want to make movies and TV shows...and I’m looking for “my people.” I’ve found many great collaborators already.
But without writing a begging letter, I need people at the movers-and-shakers level.
What do I have to offer? Well, I’m very good at this. I made a sci-fi short film that performed very well online, and have a feature I want to direct of it.
In recent days, I had a television project move forward in a super exciting way. But mum’s the word on that, for now.
I also have a large-scale sci-fi feature script that I think can sell, because it’s about A.I. and robots but very warm and emotional, whereas usually those movies are quite cold:
Spare Parts: A bionically enhanced police A.I. expert, struggling to accept her motherhood to an adopted baby, must capture a renegade android whose own robot child, if constructed, could destroy the world.
Here’s a representative page...
Some of you may be wondering what happened to that WeFunder I started to launch FSM Studios back in the spring. It made around seven grand and then petered out right when I took a two-week vacation—and when I got home, it became increasingly clear that it wasn’t going to work at the scale I needed.
So it’s still active, but I’m not sure what to do with it.
The biggest pain in the ass about WeFunder is that you have to track every single email and text and social media post about it and submit to the government to actually formalize the investment—it’s like, ugh.
Normally somebody in my situation would submit to a bunch of screenplay contests...and I’ve gotten to the point where I just can’t spend one more cent on those silly things. There’s way more randomness than anybody cares to admit.
People would also send query emails to managers and producers, and I’ve done that too, but it’s gotten to the point where it’s abundantly clear that the only thing that really “moves the needle” are personal referrals.
But wait, there’s more!
The mistake most people make by networking is that they just ask for what they want. They don’t offer something that other people want.
So what I offer professionals (managers/producers) is—I can make you money.
And what I offer my fellow entry-level writers is—I’ll consult on your project.
What does that mean, “consult”? Unfortunately I cannot promise to read (the entirety of) your script. I have offered to read scripts before, and been deluged by the requests.
But if you send me your logline or pitch, I can simply tell you what I think. And if it sounds interesting, I can read some of it, or all of it, and just try to help.
All I can do is share my opinion...but I think I have pretty actionable opinions.
And this is what I really mean by trying to find “my people”: people who just want to learn and work and help and make cool stuff and not be mercenary dickheads.
There is so much bad behavior in the film business. It’s not so much sociopaths, as people who just want to make money—so they chase things that look like they might make them money, and then drop them in a heartbeat when it becomes clear that, no, those things won’t make them money.
That’s pretty much the beginning and ending of it. It’s not personal, though it really does leave a crappy feeling.
Most people cannot generate content themselves, so they have a complicated relationship with those who can. You know, a love/hate kind of thing with those wacky artists.
I’m a unicorn because I’m both a businessman and an artist. For real, yo!
Now, I absolutely need money. But my approach is that I’ve got the material and talent to do that in a longterm career, so I neither want nor need to start any kind of script consulting business. (No offense to those who do.)
I like working with people who try hard, who have a vision, who don’t let their egos get in the way, who are fundamentally decent and rational, and willing to put in the work.
Those are my people! And if you are out there, I would love to meet you.
Write me! Thanks! Lukas@filmscoremonthly.com