Category Archives: Writing

Since 1993 I have worked consistently in entertainment, but that does not mean that I have worked every day, or every week, or every month, or every six months. Once in my twenties I went almost a full year between gigs, and in my 30’s I had a nine month dry spell that very nearly broke me. I was newly married and deeply in debt. I started calling friends in the corporate world, weighing my other options, then somehow things turned around.

In the long stretches between jobs, where every day is my own, I can putter around the apartment, organize my camera gear, go to the gym, have a leisurely coffee with a friend, play video games, learn about ham radio, or ideally….write something. Despite the endless possibilities, actually because of them, time off is fucking stressful, and no matter what credits you have, or how much money you have in the bank, these periods can get bleak. The ability to stay remotely positive during these fallow periods is the single determining factor in my view, moreso even than creative talent, in determining who is cut out for a life in the arts, and who will end up moving on to something with more structure.

Remember this and you’ll have it right: working is the vacation, surviving between jobs is the actual job. And even though you may feel a constant pressure to create projects, write scripts, have meetings, take a few minutes every day to remind yourself to let all of that go. Sure it’s good to write scripts. Meetings are awesome too. But focus on the basics, like be nice to people and don’t die. I’m talking about really redefining what it means, in these quiet times, to be successful. If you can go from sunrise to sunset with minimal impact on the earth, and without hurting another living thing, then you’ve had a productive day. And you’re that much closer to your next gig.

International Plan

This is a scene from the pilot Eric Ledgin and I shot in Sweden. It’s nearly impossible to choose one scene from a project I love so much, but I this one has Josephine Bornebusch, and Eric Ledgin.

Will Ferrell, Fake Arms

I wrote this with my pal Amy Ozols a couple days ago. A natural successor to our show’s other Fake Arms pieces, we wrote this as a pre-tape. Thankfully Shoemaker/Gavin/Miles/Jimmy all wanted to do it live. This was definitely one of THOSE bits. You know? Like…a bit that you find to be so utterly hysterical, a bit that is such complete nonsense that it makes you cry from laughing and even though you were part of its creation you don’t really understand what the joke is exactly, and deep down you are convinced that no one else could possibly be as tickled by it as you. We’ve all had bits like that and very often our fears come true because usually those bits make absolutely no sense. This bit makes no sense.