“I want to take a moment to talk about you and your idea, because it’s something I always need to remember.
“So, you, as
a screenwriter of a story that you came up with—you are the only person in the
process who will ever truly be alone with that story. You are a mother holding
their baby. You are pregnant with it. It’s in your head. No matter
how complicated the process of writing it, ultimately it is a piece of you.
This is a business and it’s also an art. I always get kinda disgusted when
people talk endlessly about the idea that their art is “part of them”—but it is! It is! It’s as part of them as the words coming out of their mouth, as the things
they say to their friends, as the things you build with your hands, the food
you cook… It’s all a sort of extrapolation of you.
“Even though things can get diluted and get ruined—or never sell—or never make you any money—or come out and do badly—or get torn apart by a director who you thought would be perfect and then betrays you—or get torn apart by critics—or, you know, succeed: always keep in mind that the thing you do when you’re alone, when you’re writing it, when it’s still part of you, is special. That’s special! That’s the act of creation! Not even most humans can do that! So if you wrote something—maybe it sucks. Maybe it’s great. I don’t know. I haven’t read it. Maybe you think it sucks. Maybe you hate it. Maybe you’re like “I hate everything I write!” Maybe you’re one of those people. I don’t get those people, but maybe you’re one of those people. Maybe you’re someone who’s a fanboy of their own stuff. Great! Please never forget, no matter how far you feel from the work, that it started inside you. That’s special. That’s a unique thing. And on some level you should—even if you’re just writing fanfiction for the internet—be proud of that.”
―Max Landis, “message to screenwriters”