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Let This Be A Lesson To You, Children ; )

I hear all the time from writers wails of confusion and irritation about how certain writers do well when they’re yet to be discovered. “But they’re so mediocre!” Said aspiring writers will say on message boards, forums and social networking sites. “If someone just took a chance on me, I’d do it so much better!!!”

Here’s what I say: yeah right.

Check out John and Edward from the X Factor. Those guys SUCK at singing, but they’re very entertaining. Both weeks the competition has run so far, much more talented singers have been voted off, yet those Irish twins are still there – despite repeated booing from the X Factor audience. I doubt they’ll win, but I’m certainly not ruling it out altogether.

These guys have become the poster boys for what this competition is really about, what it’s named for: X FACTOR. Not the Singing Factor. Not Dance Factor. Not Looking Really Cool Factor. End of the day, if you are rightly packaged – double trouble! How handy, not to mention memorable – it can work for you. You don’t actually need that much talent. You just need to be in the right place at the right time.

And this can work for screenwriters too. Think about it: everyone goes on about talent, but what this means is so different to each person you talk to. It’s unquantifiable. I’ve been called talented and I’ve been called a loser. We all have; we all will be again.

But PACKAGING – there’s something that IS quantifiable. Being professional, knowing what you’re talking about, pitching well, being polite, pleasant, someone to remember – we can ALL do that. But most of us don’t. Most of us let self doubt crucify us – or believe erroneously the story we’ve dreamt up will do all the talking. IT WON’T. Preparation is key; remembering how you APPEAR is key. Sure you’ll cock some stuff up and come across as a weirdo; learn from it, move on to the next one.

Basically it all comes down to this:

You are everything you have. So use it wisely.

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5 thoughts on “Let This Be A Lesson To You, Children ; )”

  1. I just get angry about the whole concept of X Factor.

    Actually I get angry at the whole concept of all ITV shows.

    And the wanker cameraman who was filming John Cravens bit on Countryfile the other week. Hold the camera still! Stop zooming in and out! Stop panning into the shots! You're fucking filming a piece on organic food with John Craven, it's not fucking CSI!!! Bastards.

    See this is why I don't blog anymore. I have annoyances.
    I am sorry.

  2. I totally agree that the 'X Factor' (the phenomenon not the TV Show) is not necessarily a measure of singing talent. I don't think most of the contestants have the X Factor- I think they are very good singers. Real pop stars have an identity, which is expressed through personality and visual imagery as much as vocal performance. For instance Madonna has an average singing voice, but she has cultivated an image that is marketable. Coming out of the X Factor will give these kids a bit of a career, but the pop stars with the biggest impact (like Lily Allen, Amy Winehouse, Duffy) don't come through shows like the X Factor. I also think there's something to be said for an artist maintaining a mystique- I don't necessarily want to see the nuts and bolts of the process by which they developed as an artist. I want to see the finished product. Having said all this I don't think the twins are pop stars. I think people are voting for a television spectacle rather than their talent or their X Factor. There's a kind of thrill in seeing how far they can go with so little talent and what would happen if they actually won? That and seeing Simon getting wound up. It's good television, but how many people will buy their records afterwards. Sorry I've ranted on – this is my first blog and it's a test to see if it's working as much as anything!

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