It doesn’t matter if I’m pitching for television, comics, features, tansmedia (do they still use that term?), or whatnot, I keep running into the same scenario. I prepare three pitches and the first one whiffs, the second hits and the third produces inscrutable countenances of confusion.
A little back story: when prepping my pitches, I always lead with the idea I’m dying to work on, then follow with the proposal that’s a solid (albeit less exciting for me) back up, and finally wrap with the notion that’s totally off-the-wall.
For example, when I was prepping to first enter the Top Cow Talent Hunt I had three ideas that I pitched to friends. The first, the story I was dying to tell, was a Magdalena story involving a bit of Catholic lore.
The second, my back up, was a Glacier Stone tragedy involving a fairly well known mythical beast.
The third, the off-the-wall idea, was a Blood Sword story about gender swapping ninjas with 8-bit art. So this…
But more like this…
*Note to any Top Cow person that might come across this: I’m discussing my entries for the 2013-2014 talent hunt, not what I submitted for the current, 2014-2015 talent hunt.
My friends didn’t jive with the first idea, they loved the second pitch and didn’t know what to make of my third. Going with my audience, I wrote the Glacier Stone story. Although I didn’t win the talent hunt, I wrote a damn good script. Friends that read it still ask if I’m going to run with the idea (and yeah, I think I can take my original elements and build a kick ass webcomic / original graphic novel).
More recently I wrote a pilot and once again I had three pitches. The first, my heart’s desire, was inspired by my love of flawed super heroes.
The second, my back up, was a gritty, updated twist on a Wiseguy like story.
The third, my balls-out-crazy idea, would be like an irreverent, apocalyptic Joan of Arcadia.
Again, everyone jumped on idea #2.
Two nights ago I had the same experience pitching three feature ideas. I threw out a sci-fi thriller, a monster movie and a horror-comedy. Everyone wants me to write the monster movie.
What is it about me and my inability to hock the ideas I love? Why can’t they find traction? Honestly, I dunno. Anyone want to venture a guess?
Also, you may wonder why I always go with the popular opinion. It’s because I want to write for a hungry audience (also, I don’t want to go hungry).