They say, “If you love something set it free. If it comes back it’s yours forever.”
When it’s time to take your first show to market you’re going to feel a lot of things: pride at having finished what you started, ecstatic at the possibilities in front of you, and fear: fear of being rejected, or fear that someone will steal your idea, or the big one we’re going to discuss today, fear that you’ve worked long and hard on your show and complete strangers who “don’t get it” are going to want to change it.
So what can you do about this? Cover your ass as best you can legally (of course), and then let it go.
One of the most dangerous things that fear breeds in people is anger. It is a raw emotion based on survival, thus it is completely natural for people who are scared to lash out at the person or thing they feel is a threat.
So what does this have to do with pitching? And subsequently, what do you need to do about it before you find yourself in front of the Execs?
One key to overcoming the risk of lashing out at someone who has different ideas about your show is; do not become married to your work.
If someone has thoughts or notes about your show you need to prepare yourself beforehand to respond in a professional manner. You cannot respond indignantly. You cannot respond disrespectfully, or angrily.
Before you pitch your show be prepared that you will likely need to make changes after the Execs have seen your promo material. The changes may be small, they may be big; but if your show is good enough it will go up the ladder and inevitably someone is going to want to do something differently.
Don’t forget everyone is looking for the next big show, and it can be yours. But first you need to be prepared to take the comments and notes from the Execs so that when someone in the biz offers these ideas you don’t take it as a slap in the face.
If you are married to your show and think it is the best thing ever and nothing needs to change, you are hurting yourself and your future in the business, because that just isn’t how it works.
Creating a successful TV show starts out with one idea, but eventually turns into a collaborative effort between many talented people, all of whom will have their interpretations of how your show should go, and their interpretations are based on years of experience producing television.
It is up to you to be prepared so that when the opportunity to get input from talented people in the business comes your way, you can let go of your show and let it become all that it can be.