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How to Use Comedy Writing to Write a Sitcom

Once you've written your sitcom - or preferably several of them - you need to get them read. But not by just anybody; getting them read by an agent is a necessary step. Firstly, write a one or two sentence description of each, called a logline. This is what you pitch to the agents over the phone.

How to Use Comedy Writing to Write a Sitcom

Learn all about screenwriting today. Visit Brian’s website, http://www.ScreenwritingBasics.com and learn about writing comedy and writing screenplays.

Once you’ve written your sitcom – or preferably several of them – you need to get them read. But not by just anybody; getting them read by an agent is a necessary step. Firstly, write a one or two sentence description of each, called a logline. This is what you pitch to the agents over the phone.

Make a list of all the agents who will accept unsolicited material. You can get this from the Writers Guild Association (WGA) online or look for those books that list literary agents. While no one likes rejection, it is a part of the process so don’t be put off just because the first several say no to your script. Persistence is the key. Start off with all those agents who are listed as representing new writers and/or accepting unsolicited manuscripts.

Since many agents never read unsolicited manuscripts, you need to get the agencies permission to send it. Do this by phoning and asking if you can pitch your logline for a certain sitcom. Be succinct and to the point; no one has time to waste. Have two loglines ready in case they don’t want to hear the first one.

Rehearse what you want to say, but be sure to keep it in written form close by in case you get nervous and forget. Never tell an agent how good you are, let your script do that for you. But you should aim to be funny or clever in your phone pitch – if you can do it well. If not, forget it. Agents are usually looking for ways to screen you out.

Once an agent agrees to read your script, send if off pronto and make sure you use his name in your cover letter. Keep a record of each agency you queried and what their response was. If they suggest a query by mail, be sure to do that – then you can call in another week to see if they got your letter. This is another chance to talk the agent into reading the whole script.

Mostly, success means contacts and you’ll only get those if you hang out amongst comedians and writers and all those people in that industry. You might even consider moving to New York or Los Angeles and going for a job as a writer’s assistant. That way you can become one of the family and eventually it will be right for you to ask someone to read your script.

Taking a TV writing class is another good way to make contacts. You can even do one online to get your foot in the door. However you do it, never claim that someone has recommended you if they have not. This lie will be found out and it will mean the end of any chance you may have had.

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