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Old 12-08-2015, 11:55 AM   #1
slupo
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Default How do you stay motivated for generals?

The first general I had was exciting and fun. That quickly went away by meeting three. It doesn't help that I did a bunch of brainstorming and outlining of several ideas for someone who never talked to me again (not smart, I know, I learned my lesson).

Now when my manager says someone wants to meet me, it feels completely pointless. And even though I know generals are important and that meeting more people can only help my career it's still hard get motivated for them.

What do you guys do to stay motivated for these things?
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Old 12-08-2015, 12:21 PM   #2
dmizzo
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Default Re: How do you stay motivated for generals?

Generals are investments for the future. Things sometimes come from them directly and immediately, but more often, it happens down the line. Someone sends you something, or thinks of you for a project.

Aside from that, you get to sit and talk with someone else who loves movies and makes them. Just relax and have a good time. That'll help, not only with your enjoyment, but in my experience, with results.
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Old 12-08-2015, 12:24 PM   #3
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Default Re: How do you stay motivated for generals?

.

Last edited by bruinwriter : 07-22-2016 at 12:04 AM.
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Old 12-08-2015, 12:35 PM   #4
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Default Re: How do you stay motivated for generals?

90% of generals lead nowhere. 8% result in an ongoing relationship that may pay dividends later. 2% put you on the path to a sale or job.

I just landed a pilot deal at a cable network which began as a completely unrelated feature general meeting at a Universal-based production company. They mentioned their high-profile pilot was being tossed out because of a story problem - I happened to think of a fix in the room that they loved, and 3 pitches up the producer/studio/network chain later, it's mine. Point is, this deal started as a random feature general, just like the bazillion I've had that led nowhere. You never know what will happen if you have an "a-ha" moment with the right person in the right room. It's easy to get down on generals, but they're an important part of building relationships.

Last edited by ProfessorChomp : 12-08-2015 at 01:03 PM.
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Old 12-08-2015, 12:48 PM   #5
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Default Re: How do you stay motivated for generals?

Off topic, but congrats on being voted high on the 2015 Hit List!
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Old 12-08-2015, 02:37 PM   #6
Eric Boellner
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Default Re: How do you stay motivated for generals?

College football might not be the NFL, and maybe you're not getting paid and you're not getting picked (yet), but remind yourself that you're not playing with the guys from church anymore. The fact you're getting generals indicates you're already above 98% of writers. Getting bored with all the industry talent you have to meet sounds like a lucky problem to have.

Best of luck!
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Old 12-08-2015, 03:08 PM   #7
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Default Re: How do you stay motivated for generals?

Thanks for the responses. I think looking at these meetings like just talking with a fan of movies is a great idea. I'll try that for my next one.

And I didn't mean to sound ungrateful. I'm not bored by these meetings but it's hard to remain hopeful.
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Old 12-08-2015, 03:09 PM   #8
UnequalProductions
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Default Re: How do you stay motivated for generals?

Stay motivated for generals because there are a great way to meet people and find out more about what everyone is working on around town. Use them to gather information, not just to sell yourself.
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Old 12-08-2015, 06:31 PM   #9
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Default Re: How do you stay motivated for generals?

Quote:
Originally Posted by slupo View Post
The first general I had was exciting and fun. That quickly went away by meeting three. It doesn't help that I did a bunch of brainstorming and outlining of several ideas for someone who never talked to me again (not smart, I know, I learned my lesson).

Now when my manager says someone wants to meet me, it feels completely pointless. And even though I know generals are important and that meeting more people can only help my career it's still hard get motivated for them.

What do you guys do to stay motivated for these things?
Since I live in SF I largely get to do them by phone and Skype I get in, get out, and move on, knowing full well that 9 out of 10 I will never hear from again but 1 will continue reading stuff and maybe, at some point down the line, throw me an option or paid gig.
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Old 12-08-2015, 09:11 PM   #10
ProfessorChomp
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Default Re: How do you stay motivated for generals?

Quote:
Originally Posted by slupo View Post
Thanks for the responses. I think looking at these meetings like just talking with a fan of movies is a great idea. I'll try that for my next one.
Yes and no. Be cool and bond over movies, but it's very easy for these things to become a mellow hangout and nothing more, and they'll forget you five minutes after you're gone. Anyone can be cool and talk movies. You not only want them to like you, you want them to see you as someone who can advance their company's business (and especially their own careers). They're hoping you're going to drop something brilliant in their lap that they can bring to their boss, so give it your best shot. Or they're wondering if you're the one who might be able to crack that idea their boss had over the weekend, so ask what ideas the company is trying to get off the ground. Impress them, be the person they can introduce to their boss next week with the idea you talk about today. Hanging out and talking movies is the first ten minutes, then get down to business.
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