Literary agent Bob Wendell knew the spec market was rough, but yesterday marked the first time he’d ever heard a cackle emanate from the sky once he started sending copies of his client’s new spec to producers.
“They said things were getting better, but that howl of angry condescension can’t be a good sign,” said Wendell, looking at the dark clouds above. “And for some reason, every time I send a PDF to a studio contact, my computer crashes. Eerie times, man.”
Wendell isn’t the only one dealing with the abnormally difficult spec market. According to manager Terri Mason, one of her client’s screenplays literally burst into flames when she tried to hand it to a producer.
“One moment I’m giving my friend a copy of Lover’s Landing, a hilarious romantic comedy with heart, and the next thing you know, a giant bolt of lightning incinerates the script, nearly killing me,” said Mason. “It’s just not worth it right now.”
In fact, some writers have sworn off writing new specs altogether.
“The more I think about it, game show writing really isn’t that bad,” said WGA member Allan Bourne. “You get free lunch, you learn a lot, plus you don’t have to hear that your script didn’t sell because the credit markets are too tight. What does that even mean?! Maybe if I’m on Jeopardy long enough, I’ll find out.”