Thursday, October 20, 2011

Day One: AFF

Hey y'all,

Yea, I'm back in Texas and my accent is already through the roof! I'm also back at the Austin Film Festival and super happy to be here.

The day started with opening remarks. There were definitely all kinds of remarks. On top of that, Shane Black and Lawrence "Larry" Kasdan were there with some bits of advice.

"The writing life is sad and lonely." - Mr. Black

"Enjoy the ecstasy!" - Mr. Kasdan

Those weren't taken out of context at all. I swear.

The first panel I went to was "A Conversation with Alec Berg," and let me say, it was one of the best conversations I have ever had. The guy is incredibly funny, well-spoken, and honest. Also, he name drops Jerry (Seinfeld) and Larry (David) like it ain't no thing. Let me tell you, Mr. Berg, it is a very big thing, and knowing "Jerry & Larry" is a tremendous accomplishment.

Some of his best advice was this - the funniest things are the things that happen in real life that make us feel weird and uncomfortable. A ton of Seinfeld and Curb episodes were based off of things that happened to the writers. So, all you comedy writers out there, pay attention to your own life. Okay, thanks. It was also very interesting to learn exactly what goes into make an episode of Curb: 1. they only outline episodes, never writing dialogue because Larry knows best and 2. Larry knows best. There you have it, folks. You want to write a super successful television show, just hire Larry David.

The second and final panel of my day was "Breaking into the Business with Ashley Lyle and Bart Nickerson." They are writing partners, and totally dating, like omg, for real? It was great to hear about their writing process as collaborators, but then they reminded everyone that, when you write with someone else, you have to share the money. Psssh. Their advice was target agents' assistants (as they will be the big wigs in charge some day), have a lot of original material to show for yourself, and write for Netflix because they have a ton of money and no programming. Go out and do that and break in to the business, and then call me up and give me a job.

Looking forward to Day Two,

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