Got a hard lesson in humility and a hearty dose of reality these past few weeks.
I’d thought my animated fantasy-comedy spec was ready to set loose on the world, so had submitted it to contests of note, plus a few other genre-centric ones.
Initial results have been trickling in, and those results have been drastically less than desired.
Naturally, it raises doubts about ability and lots of second-guessing on several fronts.
I’d sent it out to some trusted colleagues for feedback, and almost all of them were very enthusiastic and encouraging about it. There were even words of praise from writers of exceptional quality, which added to my growing feelings of confidence.
Note I’d said “almost all”. There were a few that didn’t care for it. They weren’t fans of animation, fantasy, or comedy, or the script was too light-hearted for them. No matter what, it just wasn’t for them.
I get that. Not everybody’s going to like everything.
But it was the comments about why it wasn’t working that really struck a nerve – at first in a negative way, but like with many notes, the hidden positives and takeaways soon came to light.
Questions were asked and about story details, characters, the world it’s set in, and so forth.
When several people ask the same question or have the same concern, then that’s something that needs to be addressed.
So after a brief period of “sheesh, I must be a really shitty writer”, I took those notes and started figuring out how to make the appropriate fixes.
As you’d expect with a rewrite/revision, darlings had to be killed. Painful, but necessary. On the upside, the replacement material seems to be working; some beyond expectations.
I’ve already written off this year’s contest season. If anything positive happens, that’ll be great, but just seems highly unlikely at this point.
It’s frustrating that this is how things worked out, but it’s just the way it is. Putting in this new round of work is helping restore confidence levels for myself and the material.
Everything from this point forward is all about getting the script into better shape – and to be ready for next year.