The First Taste of Success – with agent:
(a) “It takes a lot of work for an agent to break in a new writer, so the things they’re gonna look for are really straight-forward. One, a really good personality, because they have to put you in a room with people. Two, that you have very strong visions, but you can play ball creatively. Three, that you don’t just have one spec script – you’ve got multiples scripts, multiple pitches, multiple outlines. They want you to make their jobs easier.”
(b) “What you will find out in the long run is that agents have very little power over you. In the beginning, you think you work for them. In the end, they work for you. It’s like a bank. You know, once you have money in the bank, they’re gonna do their job or you move to another bank… What you gotta have is someone that really believes in you and helps you learn to believe in yourself.”
(c) “I remember that the Writers Guild used to issue a piece of yellow paper with a list of all the agencies on it, including ones with little asterisks that said they will only accept submissions from people they know. The big agencies were all that way… But there were a handful of little agencies that would read screenplays, even from a nobody like me. I sent out a spec screenplay to every one of them, and I met with a couple of them.
I don’t think you get a decent agent until you have some work that’s been seen, that people have talked about. Prior to that, anything will do.”
Excerpted with quotes from (a) Stephen Susco & (b) Mike Binder & (c) John D. Brancato
Tales from the Script (2010)