Mike at HD For Indies jots John August:

How became a screenwriter: grew up in Boulder, liked movies but didn’t think about it too much, watched War of the Roses as a kid, brother and he watched it and wrote down the dialog, realized as a kid that “Oh, somebody had to write this down!”

“Naive but hey, that’s how it’s done.”

There’s media about screenwriting now, but

Got into a producer’s program in LA, 25 people in his class group, learned it all there

read first copy of Variety – couldn’t understand it, read every issue twice, figure out where the studios are

-had a great script library

-started reading bad scripts – worked as a reader for a tiny company, doing coverage

-at that point started figuring out he could do it

-Hollywood was this thing in the distance, as he got closer, he realized there isn’t a line or barrier, it is just a lot of little steps

-once you’re writing you’re in the industry, it doesn’t feel like that

-met Spielberg, like a mythical firgure, talking to him realized he’s not magical, just working really hard. Kind of dissapointing, but realized that while tallented, he just works really hard

-been a lot of work to get to where he is

-perception that it is a lottery attitude – only time you read about it is because somebody gets $2M for a screenplay…only read about it because so rare

-usually doing 8th draft of a revision for something you don’t really care aboutanymore – that is the reality

-either writing by yourslef, or in a mtg w/a jnr exec who might not know who you are

-“if I can deflate your dreams at all I’ll be happy to do that”

John August, as you know, is the most generous and approachable of the blogging screenwriters. His recent confession that he doesn’t feel sorry for firing an 8 year old girl from the set of his latest movie shows, paradoxically, just how much he does care.