On… TRUE LOVE Leave a reply Whoops, I haven’t posted in a month. I was finishing the first draft of TRUE LOVE (your future favorite TV show…) (I hope, oh man, I hope) for ABC for the first three weeks of December, then went to Ireland (where my husband is from) for Christmas, while writing the second draft. In case you were wondering: writing the second draft of a TV show pilot, while staying with your mother-in-law, with a two-year-old and a four-year-old with jet lag, plus about 12 adults and 19 children around at any given time, plus innumerate drop-ins, when it’s build-an-ark weather outside, and then everyone gets a vomiting bug, is … I don’t know. Like spinning 9 plates while having knives thrown at you in the mosh pit of a death metal concert. But I made it. Here’s a sick confession: I like writing under pressure. I’m not sure why. Maybe it’s a hangover from advertising. I was a copywriter for almost a decade, which means you learn to create fast under huge pressure. You learn to ditch ideas and come up with new concepts without panicking or being emotional about it, you learn to think so fast that smoke almost comes out your ears. Most days, you have an account director standing behind you shouting ‘WE NEED THIS COPY NOW ARE YOU SURE YOU WANT TO USE THAT WORD?’ while an art director emails ‘can u make it 90 chrtrs or less thx’ even though he’s sitting RIGHT next to you and the client then comes back with ‘can we combine concept a with concept b but make it more on-brand but fresher?’ and you keep thinking the whole time ‘if I was the audience what would I think?’ and all the while, a junior account exec is crying in the bathrooms and some other idiot is playing that old The Roots song 400 times in a row. It’s like running a dozen sprints, every day. Euphoric and satisfying and exciting. I started writing books about six years ago, while still working in advertising. Books are intense, in one way, but also – don’t tell the other authors I said this – boring. You just sit there and wrestle with your brain for months on end, going deep into the character and rewriting and rewriting and rewriting, and try to be funny and surprising whenever you can. It’s like running a marathon. A nice sense of accomplishment, but for me, much too lonely. Writing movies, which I’ve been doing for about three years in between books, is SO fun, as it’s more collaborative while you’re working with the producers and studio, but again, a lot of alone time. And there’s no guarantee they’ll ever be anything. I’ve sold two movies. Will they get made? Who the hell knows. Will this TV show get made? Again, who the hell knows. The odds aren’t great. But so far, creating a TV show is the perfect combination of advertising pressure, book intensity and movie fun. Cross your fingers for me.