Don’t Worry, Be Happy

I get contacted quite often by kids' TV people who want to know what I think they should or should not worry about. So, today, as sort of a public service, I have compiled a short list of FAWQ's or "Frequently Asked Worrisome Questions."
July 12, 2011

Some people like watching sports on TV.  Some people like to bake bread.  I like to worry.  Worrying can be a great asset for any professional, particularly one in the kids’ TV business where there are so many things to worry about.  Will your show get picked up?  Will you ever recoup your investment?  Will your toys suck?  Worrisome thoughts indeed.  Perhaps because I write this blog, I get contacted quite often by kids’ TV people who want to know what I think they should or should not worry about.  So, today, as sort of a public service, I have compiled a short list of FAWQ’s or “Frequently Asked Worrisome Questions.”  I suspect that not all of you will agree with my answers but that, frankly, is not one of the things I worry about.

I am afraid to pitch my show because I think someone will steal it.

Don’t worry about it.  There’s very little theft in the kids’ TV business.  It’s cheaper for someone to do a deal with you than to risk going to court with you.  Besides, if you don’t pitch your show no one will know that it exists.

I am concerned that nobody will buy my new app.

Worry about it.  There are 500,000 apps waiting to be approved by the iTunes Store.  You have a better chance of getting hit by an angry bird than making any real money on an app.

Do I have talent?

Don’t worry about it.  As my friend Adam Beck likes to say, “Talent is overrated.”  Worrying about talent is like worrying about your height or the color of your hair.

What if someone else already owns the name of my show?

Worry about it.  And get a good law firm to do a title search for you.  Most names are already owned by someone.

A broadcaster did not return my e-mail.

Don’t worry about it.  Just wait 15 days and then e-mail them again as if you didn’t e-mail them the first time.  If they don’t respond the second or third time, then worry.

My series is a few weeks behind schedule.

Worry about it.  It’s very difficult and costly to catch up on a production once you fall behind.  Make a plan with a very strong producer to solve your problem immediately.

I want to pitch my show but I am uncomfortable in meetings.

Don’t worry about it.  Most people in the animation industry don’t have the best social skills.  Broadcasters understand that many talented people are socially awkward.

My network development executive got fired.

Worry about it.  Often when a development exec goes, their slate of shows goes, too.  Always stay in touch with these people because most will eventually land somewhere else.

I am just one person with a show idea.  How can I possibly compete with all those big companies who pitch shows?

Don’t worry about it.  History has shown that big companies have a much harder time coming up with truly original shows than small companies and individuals.  Hold your head high.

I am going to mortgage my home to finance my pilot.

Worry about it.  Most broadcasters don’t want or need a pilot in order to pick up a show.  Save your money.  As they say in Vegas, “Bet with your head, not over it.”

I love your blog but I never write in your comment box.

Don’t worry about it.  I’m just happy you’re still reading.

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