My Roadmap Writers Experience
By Ashley Glacel (Career Writer Program Writer)
In January I had a fateful coffee date with a friend of a friend from undergrad. We met in between our far-flung neighborhoods and we opened up about our Hollywood dreams. Even here in L.A., it’s possible to feel shy about our plans for stardom though we know a good portion of us have them. I told him I wanted to make 2020 my year (remember when we had plans for 2020? BAHAHA!). I was going to take my screenwriting out of isolation, rip off its mask, and spread it around town like the coronavirus.
Okay, that’s not true. I didn’t use a pandemic metaphor - how could I have? January was such a different time. Centuries have passed since then.
What I did say was that while I didn’t know how to infiltrate the entertainment industry, I was determined to figure it out. He picked up his phone, saying, “Hold on. I have a friend who’s part of this group. Let me look up the name.” Then he texted me Roadmap’s website.
At first blush, Roadmap seemed too good to be true. I had myself, in conversation with other friends, often used that exact word to describe what I was missing: “I just need a roadmap laying out the steps I need to take.” Surely Roadmap had to be a scheme, like so many other contests and e-books promising stardom and Oscar nominations.
So, to start, I dipped just a toe. Took advantage of some free webinars. Observed some workshops. Put names to faces of the Roadmap staff; felt encouraged when they remembered my name. This might be the real deal, I thought. I think this could be exactly what I was looking for but didn’t know existed. Nothing left to do but hold my breath, plug my nose, and jump in.
Three months in, I’m basically a walking infomercial for Roadmap. I’ve realized the “too good to be true” feeling I got initially stems from how passionate the Roadmap staff is about their mission: to teach writers how to market themselves in this very particular, idiosyncratic industry. The founders landed on exactly what they want to do with their careers and they’re incredibly good at it. And their goal is to make their WRITERS good at it.
Their passion is also what attracts the many development executives, producers, and managers who work with Roadmap - heavy-hitters available to Roadmap writers through pitch sessions, marketing workshops, and industry roundtables. Roadmap has created a symbiotic environment for writers to learn from these Hollywood veterans while getting exposure to up-and-coming writers who, once Roadmap is done with them, are ready to take the industry by the horns.
Anyway, I could go on and on. Just ask my friends and family. But here’s the TL;DR: Roadmap is the real deal, and I can’t believe how much I’ve learned – and how confident I feel about it – after a few months. Thanks to Roadmap, 2020 might still be my year.