The Editorial Casting Couch: Making Dreams Come True

I have this sketchy-looking couch in my basement, perfect casting couch material.  It’s only a couple shades away from I’m-a-naughty-harlot red, it’s broken down on one side so you kind of sink into the cushions if you sit in the wrong spot, and did I mention it’s a hide-a-bed?

We’re talking total class, all the way.  And whenever I have fresh pages in hand, I grab my red pen and head for that skeevy little spot because the editorial couch is where dreams come true, baby.

I like to take it slow at first, try to warm up to the words, make sure everybody’s comfortable.  Then I might make a suggestion or two.  You know, you’d look a lot better if we just got rid of that little phrase right there.  I mean it’s only a thin four or five words.  It’s not like it’s making that much of a difference.  I bet no one would even notice . . . now, see.  Doesn’t that feel better?

Sometimes I have to get onto the verbs for being too passive.  Come on.  Show me what you really want.  What do you mean?  I want to be able to picture it.  Be specific, but keep it fun.

There are other times when I know a character’s heart just isn’t in the scene.  Make me feel your desire.  Show me that your pursuit transcends just wanting something; it’s a need.  Make me believe it.  Make me care whether or not you make the cut.  Show me what you’ll do to make it happen.

Then there are those times when the words themselves matter more than anything else.  Let’s say that last part out loud and see how it sounds . . . No, I’m just not feeling it.  We need to try again.  Maybe if we change it up a little, experiment, see where things take us.  You do want to be in this story, don’t you?

For the innocents among you, this may seem like a cruel, manipulative, even dirty, process, but it’s how the game is played.  The words need you to take control.  When they first come to you, they don’t even realize their full potential, but they’re looking for someone who’ll put in the time to get them there.  The words need a voice, a purpose, and direction.  And sometimes a little coaxing can go a long way.

Larry Jenkins is an aspiring Word Pimp. Has laptop, will travel. Let's make this happen, people.

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