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SYS Podcast Episode 365 With Bob Tzudiker Writer of Tarzan, Anastasia and Newsies (transcript)

This is a transcript of SYS Podcast Episode 365 With Bob Tzudiker Writer of Tarzan, Anastasia and Newsies.

Ashley: Welcome to Episode #365 of the Selling Your Screenplay podcast. I’m Ashley Scott Meyers, screenwriter and blogger over at www.sellingyourscreenplay.com. Today I am interviewing Bob Tzudiker who is a writer and also an actor. He’s on today to talk about his career and how he got his start in the business. He started out as an actor working outside of Hollywood, and eventually he started to write, he sold the spec script called Newsies and then went on to write many big animated Disney films, including Anastasia and Tarzan. So stay tuned for that interview. If you find this episode valuable, please help me out by giving me a review in iTunes or leave me a comment on YouTube or re-tweeting the podcast on Twitter or liking or sharing it on Facebook.

These social media shares really do help spread word about the podcast, so they are very much appreciated. Any websites or links that I mention in the podcast can be found on my blog in the show notes. I also publish a transcript with every episode in case you’d rather read the show or look at something later on. You can find all the podcast, show notes at www.sellingyourscreenplay.com/podcast, and then look for Episode Number #365. If you want my free guide, How to Sell a Screenplay In Five Weeks, you can pick that up by gonna www.sellingyourscreenplay.com/guide. It’s completely free, you just put in your email address and I’ll send you a new lesson once per week for five weeks, along with a bunch of bonus lessons.

I teach the whole process of how to sell your screenplay in that guide. I’ll teach you how to write a professional logline and query letter, and how to find agents, managers and producers who are looking for material. Really is everything you need to know to your screenplay, just go to www.sellingyourscreenplay.com/guide. So a quick few words about what I’m working on, we are still plugging away on the Rideshare Killer. We finally got the entire score settled, so that’s being mixed, and then it’s off to sound design after that. And then the final mixer we’ll put all the audio together. So definitely making some good progress on the Rideshare Killer. I’m also working on my rewrite for my film noir screenplay that I’m hoping to shoot later this year.

I got a new draft done, but I’ll be continuing to make tweaks over the next couple of months while we really locked down the script. Today is the official first day of SYS’s Six-Figure Screenplay Contest. We’re officially open for submissions starting today, February 1st, 2021 for the second year of our screenplay contest. SYS’s Six-Figure Screenplay Contest. We are looking for the best screenplays that could be produced on a low budget. In other words, six figures or less. We also have a shorts category going, so if you have an easy to produce a low budget short film, we have a category for you as well this year. We’re gonna be giving away lots of prizes like last year, including a thousand dollars to the winner.

Every screenplay will get two assessments in the first round. If one of the readers gives a screenplay a consider or recommend the script will go to a third reader for another assessment, and then the highest rated scripts we’ll move into the second round. This will be around 20 percent of the scripts, and then I will review the second round screenplays and the top ones we’ll move into the quarterfinals. That’s where our industry judges will then begin to read and select the scripts. Same deal as last year, we offer the first round assessments for a small additional fee, and we’ve lined up tons of industry judges. I think this year we’re gonna have more than 50 industry judges reading scripts and giving some feedback.

To learn more about what we have going, just go to www.sellingyourscreenplay.com/contest. Again, February 1st is our first official day to be open. So if you have a low budget script, do check it out. So now let’s get into the main segment. Today I am interviewing screenwriter, Bob Tzudiker. Here is the interview.

Ashley: Welcome Bob to the Selling Your Screenplay podcast. I really appreciate you coming on the show with me today.

Bob: It’s my pleasure. Thank you.

Ashley: So to start out, maybe you can tell us a little bit about your background. Where did you grow up and how did you get interested in the entertainment business?

Bob: You know, I can’t remember why it was interested in the entertainment business. I actually never was. I grew up moving around a lot. Born in Boston, but every two years we’d move. My father worked for a company that did business with the military. So we moved to different places in Germany and France, then New Hampshire, Northern Virginia. At some point along the way, I decided that I wanted to be in school plays and just started doing that. And then I went to St. John’s College in Annapolis, Maryland, which has no theatre, no showbiz program. It’s called the great book school, the best education for writing in my opinion, that exists. But and then somebody said, “There’s this summer stock theatre, why don’t you audition for it? It’s in my hometown.” So I went down and auditioned and started working.

So I would do summers at this theatre and I had no training. I had no reason to think that I could do any of this, but no one told me I shouldn’t either. But I think they hired me as a character actor. We were doing Pinter’s, The Birthday Party, but mostly musicals. So when I showed up, we were in rehearsal for a musical. I think it was anything goes. And everybody starts tap dancing and rehearsals, step truffle change, and the choreographer just says these words and these people do these steps and I’d never even seen tap before. So I was tremendously relieved, not being a natural dancer. For dress rehearsal, I went in the dressing room and they had taken the taps off my shoes so I wouldn’t screw up the sound. So that was a great relief.

Then after college, somebody said, “Well, you should go to New York.” So I went to New York and just kept working as an actor.

Ashley: At some point, did you get an agent? You’re doing this summer stock, you’re doing theatre. Did you segue into getting an agent once you got to New York and start to get commercials or?

Bob: I didn’t. I went to work at a classical rep, off-Broadway classical rep company. So that was like a training ground for me. It was nine shows in rotating rep, Shakespeare, O’Neill, Beckett, count of Monte Cristo. And it was, you know, The Importance of Being Earnest. So I played Reverend Chasuble, but got to cover Lady Bracknell at a certain point. So that was eight shows a week and a different play every night and sometimes two different plays in the same day. So that was kind of a training ground. But at that point, and I don’t know why I thought I, “Oh, I’m supposed to be writing,” but I couldn’t get it together. I was living on basically oatmeal with no butter.

I had no student debt, which is unusual nowadays and it left me free to have nothing and need very, very little to survive even in New York city at that time. That’s 1976 or so. So probably before most of your audience was born.

Ashley: Well, you’d be surprised. There’s a lot of, yeah, middle-aged screenwriters out there.

Bob: Okay, I’m so glad. So I decided to move to Santa Fe where I had some exposure to Santa Fe because I had friends, there’s a campus of St. John’s College in Santa Fe, and I visited them there and I liked it. I thought I’d go and write. But the discipline of writing has always been a challenge for me. So I ended up doing movies that would come through, producing plays, being in plays. So I made a living for myself doing movies and theatre. And you live off box office, you get… it’s a great training ground also. At a certain point I produced Threepenny Opera and it was almost really, really good. I realized that it was the almost part that bothered me and it was just too small.

So I ended up moving to LA right into the teeth of an actor’s strike, was invited back to join an equity theatre that had then opened in Santa Fe for the summer.  I did Cyrano with Michael York and John Randolph in the front page. John Randolph was a principal in the Ensemble Studio Theatre in New York and LA, which took me into auditioning for the Ensemble Studio Theatre, which took me into eventually meeting my wife who was also an actor. I started writing for the Ensemble a few plays that I had readings of, never really felt like I finished well enough to release. So I’m really, I have a great talent for starting things, and I’m a little more challenged in finishing. And at that point I was less and less interested in acting.

The more acted on films, the less interesting it was to me. Film acting made me nervous in some way where you could throw me on the stage, it wouldn’t bother me at all. I was always too aware of the whole shebang of the shooting and the schedule and all the people that are there. I would think about the whole where really an actor needs to be completely self-centered and everybody is there for me to do this thing, which is the fact. I never quite made that turn. It’s not quite in my nature. So I had started writing and then knowing my wife and I started writing together and she invited me to join this very informal writing group called The Writer’s Block. That was an outgrowth of a group in New York.

I think there’s a commercial business by that name, but we just met in a living room. But somehow… and a lot of… it was mostly actors turning to writing, but somehow with no admissions procedures and no real effort to do anything. We had like a, it was usually Jane Anderson’s house when she got the Emmy for all of Kitteridge and her movie, The Wife was out previously, not her first Emmy either. Donald Margulies won the Pulitzer and playwriting. Janet Fitch wrote White Oleander, a novel that became a movie with Michelle Pfeiffer.

Ashley: And these are all people in your writer’s group?

Bob: All in the writers group. And it’s fascinating. It was a bizarre cluster of people. Purely word of mouth and it cost a dollar a week. The dollar a week would cover cookies and coffee and you would schedule work. So I used it as a deadline. It was some kind of accountability. So I have tremendous belief in having some kind of external structure like that. At least I need it to motivate me to write because I had committed to coming in and doing a reading of 20, 30 pages. So next Monday night I’ll produce those pages where it might take me three weeks to do it without that group. So it’s a great motivator. The only better motivator in my experience is a paycheck if you deliver the draft.

Ashley: Yeah, exactly.

Bob: That’s an easy motivator and it makes you get out of your way. But it helps so much to have someplace to go. A place also where you’re gonna hear it. And we got the most amazing sight readings you could ever imagine. You would pass out your pages and people would… you would just cast it on the spot and they’d read, and it was astoundingly good. And then it’s a great test of writing also. If somebody reads it correctly in a sight reading, then you know the flow is right. So we wrote a screenplay there together called Mrs. Faust. We later sold that as a spec script. In fact we’re living in Mrs. Faust I would say, because it bought us our house.

Ashley: Let’s talk about that journey now. So you’re segueing, you’re doing a lot of acting and you’ve done great credits in the ‘80s. You’ve pretty much hit all the big shows, Murder, She Wrote. I noticed a lot of our favorite shows from the ‘80s, you had acting gigs on. So your segueing into your writing now. Talk about that process. How did you sell this first spec script? As an actor, did you have access to agents and managers? Just, what was your positioning of the script and how did you get it ultimately sold?

Bob: What happened was I was working with a college friend helping him break his TV scripts. He got early entrée into the, our television world. At that time, very four-act-structured, highly structured. I would just help him [inaudible 00:12:57] break his story. So it was kind of an apprenticeship in that way. But Noni and I started writing a half-hour comedy together. We wrote this date set of Golden Girls in the Cosby, two specs, samples. To more directly answer your question, no, we didn’t have powerful agents. Noni was acting at that time also. We didn’t use our acting directly to feed into writing, but we’d been in the business for a long time at that point. So, and there was the way things work, it was just familiar to us.

The language, and also getting an ear for dialogue through all the acting. But Noni had briefly dated an agent who had a literary agency and sometime before parted ways amicably after a couple of dates. So she called him up and said, “Hey, we’ve written these two spec half-hour things. Would you read them? Tell them if we’re crazy.” So he read them like that weekend, called us on Monday and said, “We wanna represent you.” He said, “But we’re not strong in television. You have to write a feature.” So we started writing Mrs. Faust. Meanwhile Jane Anderson sold a TV pilot that had a commitment for nine episodes, and they invited us to be on staff for that. But then there was a writers strike.

So these strikes have had a tremendous impact on my [inaudible 00:14:34] because it was a long and nasty strike. When the strike ended, very experienced, top writers were hungry and their producer called us and said, you know, we’re doing the nine episodes, but not with you because you just can’t turn down these people who want work. So that set us back. But in the meantime, we had started this spec script. That spec got optioned by some producers then they couldn’t do anything with it. It was dropped, picked up by some other producers. They couldn’t really do much with it. In the meantime, what happened…? Oh, the script was being read around town and getting a good response.

We had a different agent at that point and she said, “Well, what do you wanna do next?” So we said, “Well, we have these three ideas.” We described them for her. She said, “Well, which one are you most passionate about?” Very wise question, unusual for an agent. We said, “Well, it’s this one, but it’s a period piece with kids, and it’s really dark and quite violent. Isn’t that strike one, two or three? You should not pitch that. So we pitched Newsies as this period drama based on a real union action in 1899, when the news boys and girls of New York City rose up against Joseph Pulitzer, and the strikes spread like wildfire up and down the East Coast. Quite an amazing event. So we invented the story within that context, pitched it to nine producers.

The first eight said, no, you know, three strikes. The last one, a development person named Marianne Sweeney said, “I’m gonna make this happen.” So she had to strong arm her boss into signing on for it. She set up two meetings, two pitches. Now, mind you, we had sold one half hour episode of something. We had written a romantic comedy spec with magical elements called Mrs. Faust, the very end of the Faust story, and we’re pitching a period drama. So the first time we were walking onto a studio lot was to pitch Newsies… as writers was to pitch Newsies. She set up two meetings. Disney wanted Amblin, Steven Spielberg’s company. The Disney meeting got set first.

So we went in and did the longest pitch in history. I mean, it was… I would have fallen asleep myself. So we’re breaking every possible rule that you might be able to concoct, and sold it right away in the room. That job paid I think, half our death, and you know, it was minimal. The first draft of that was good. It was long, but it was good, and I’m really hard on myself in terms of what I think something is good or not. It’s very hard for me to say something is good, but the… that draft got read by the people at Disney feature animation, who would scan the live action division to look for talent, especially young, cheap talent. We weren’t young, but we were cheap. So while Newsies was proceeding, Newsies was the fastest greenlight in the history of Disney and the history of Paramount at that time.

Because all the Disney people came over from Paramount and that’s what one of the execs said to us. And it was… and Jeffrey Katzenberg kept pressing, can we make this a musical? Well, the answer is yes, but Donald De Line, our exec and we, thought, “No, not for film.” Donald said, “Nobody knows how to do that now.” We had tried to retain the stage rights because we always saw it as a musical on Broadway. Our own lawyer laughed in our faces when we said that. He said, “It’s your first deal and it’s Disney, it’ll never happen.” Well, guess what, many years later, because of the Writer’s Guild and the minimum basic agreement we got what’s called separated rights, read your minimum agreement, know what its clauses are.

So we own the story and the characters, Disney owned the title and the music. So at a certain point there was a reorganization of the studio, Newsies was taken away from Donald De Line, given to somebody else, and he just went with making it into a musical at the last minute. So we were involved in that transition at first, but were quickly fired because that’s the way it goes.

Ashley: Yeah, yeah, yeah.

Bob: These are long answers.

Ashley: No, no, this is a fascinating story. So then, okay, so then you’ve got this movie under your belt and it sounds like Disney was just looking for new writers that they could then pipe into their animation division. So let’s talk a little bit about The Lion King. Again, just doing the research, I think there’s 26 other writers that have a writing credit on The Lion King. So maybe just talk about that a little bit. What was your experience on that? So you transitioned from Newsies and then they sort of plucked you, they liked your writing, so they plucked you into the animation.

Bob: Yeah. They offered us a new project with a young director named Rob Minkoff. Jerry Herman, the Broadway legend was doing the music and lyrics. I wanted to do it knowing he didn’t. Our lawyer said, “Feature animation, it won’t help you, but it won’t hurt you either.” So we did it and had just a wonderful work experience and it was so… you know, it was quick, but it was brilliantly creative. And then they passed on that project. Rob’s next job was the junior director on Lion King. We ended up coming on the Lion King for just a month. While we were working on that project that didn’t go, our spec script sold. That’s really what changed our lives economically.

Ashley: The spec for Newsies?

Bob: No, the spec… Newsies was a pitch and…

Ashley: That’s right. Mrs. Faust.

Bob: Mrs. Faust sold a lot. It was front page of Variety and all that stuff, such that they didn’t think we were gonna show up at Disney to work on this little project, which would never occur to us not to. But so when Rob moved on to The Lion King, they ended up calling us in at a certain point, but we had other commitments also, live action commitments. We were on for a month. So the proliferation of credits that you see is these animated features, especially Lion King, which had a very troubled history at that point, developmentally. Those are storyboard artists who have a profound impact frequently on the writing. The producer, the directors, it’s very much a team effort.

For the month that we were there, I think the question came up, why are these… so this is early on. Why are all these animals so into the lions when lions eat them? So I said, “Well, we’ll think about it, and we’ll see what we come in with.” So we came in with then… we did most of the Mufasa-Simba stuff, the father-son stuff, including what I call the carnivore apology. You know, we eat the antelope and then we die and become the grass and the antelope eat us. It’s not as satisfying, but it’s good enough. We pulled in because we had heard the song Circle of Life. We pulled in that image basically, is what we did. So most of the stuff we wrote really stuck, but the heavy lifting was done by Irene Mecchi and Jonathan Roberts, and Don Hahn, the directors, the storyboard artists.

It’s very… it was a magical thing because they called us in to talk about Lion King and they had the storyboards up. These are eight and a half by 11 white sheets of paper with line drawings on it. They had just received a version, a recorded version of Circle of Life, an early recording for that. So Roger Allers gets up and they start the music and he’s kind of caressing the story, giving us the timing. This is more or less what you’d be seeing. Dead silent, except for the song. And those opening storyboards are exactly what you see in the movie. It’s exactly what you see on stage. He said, “So do you wanna work on this?” We said, yeah, not knowing that everybody else was trying like hell to get off the project, because it was, you know, there were story issues, and there were projects that looked like hotter properties, Pocahontas and pipeline, things like that.

But I’m really glad we did that. Then they kept asking us to dance. They said, come on hunchback. And we make these like six, 10-week deals hunchback. We were on for a full year. Then we went to Fox and did some work there, and other places. Meanwhile, we’re doing live action concurrently, another spec was optioned, we had to rewrite, and then came back to Disney for Tarzan. We were on Tarzan for 15 months, you know?

Ashley: Yeah. I’m curious, you made a comment a moment ago about just this process of working on the Lion King was such a… was a fun process or a rewarding fulfilling process. What can you say about the differences between animation and writing a live action spec, or project paid writing assignment, studio writing assignment versus animation?

Bob: Yeah, it depends on the stage of development. If you’re doing a production rewrite live action, you’re very much in the mix and you’re gonna frequently be shooting what you were writing the night before. So, very high pressure. Animation is lower pressure in that sense, but you get the instant gratification of when you write a scene, it gets handed off, you may rewrite it a couple of times, then it’s handed off to storyboard artists. Well, these are brilliant artists. So the way you get to see your work and test it, it’s right up in front of you and you can see, “Well, we don’t need that, and we can cover this. We can cut this dialogue. We can restructure that.” And, or new ideas will come in in the imagery, and you’re able to rewrite, taking advantage of what the artist brings.

That collaboration is what we love about animation process. Live action is wonderful because it’s much more concentrated. We’re very much on our own. We’ll be hired to do something, or we pitch something and then we more or less agree on what we’re gonna write, we go away and write it and then come back in for meetings. So there’s intermittent collaboration with producers or executives or directors if they’re there.

Ashley: Got you. I’m curious too, as your writing career was taking off, did you then make a conscious decision to just stop going out for auditions and to sort of let your acting career fade out? You just enjoyed the writing more, and I guess the follow-up question to that is, do you think being an actor is a good background for someone that ultimately wants to be a writer?

Bob: I think to be a writer, you need a computer and a slinky, and that’s about it. To be an actor, you have to have people have to come up with millions of dollars to, before you’re doing something on film anyways. Because my interest waned in acting anyway, I stopped going on commercial auditions when I got serious about writing. It just took up too much time. But I would still do TV or film work that would come up. So I think the last movie I did was, it was Total Recall, was shooting down in Mexico, which was a wonderful experience, but the… so acting to me was the equivalent of it’s too extreme to say, like being a waiter. It was a way to support myself, but leave myself lots of time for writing.

That’s how I felt about it. In some ways I think my work, in my view, when I… it kinda shows that, that I just didn’t feel that good about it. As soon as I was able, I stopped. As soon as I went on honorary withdrawal from SAG, my first call was to jeopardy because I thought that I wasn’t allowed to go on jeopardy because I was a SAG member. It turned out they had dropped that rule several years before so I got to go on jeopardy and got a little money from there. So yeah, I dropped the acting pretty much as quickly as I could.

Ashley: Got you. So let’s talk about your new project, Zoodiker. Maybe you can just kind of tell us what that’s all about.

Bob: Well, part of it grows out of my beginnings and part of it, I started teaching at FUSC. So I teach one class a semester in screenwriting. And in my view, that that writing group, The Writer’s Block really exemplified a way to be a writer, which is quite solitary, and what’s crucial for writing is to be read. How do you get read if you’re off somewhere and don’t have a group like that, or you may have a group and want an electronic infrastructure for that group to operate in. So I created Tzudiker with the two heads of computer science at Loyola Marymount University. What we wanted to do was create something that was completely secure, that is fully encrypted, and in which you can share the work either with anybody who’s on the platform, or you can identify specific people or groups that will see your work.

Otherwise it’s completely invisible to the others. The other attributes of Zoodiker, I think of it in a way as a response engine. When I give you something to read, if I ask you to read something, it’s wonderful to get as clean a response as possible, it’s really hard to do. It’s really hard. You can even give it to best friends, but either they want you to succeed so much and they soft-pedal, or there… it’s hard to get a clean read of something. So what Zoodiker does is it displays only one page at a time in any web browsers. There’s no app to download, it’s any web browser from any, from your phone or computer or whatever. If displays one page at a time. And at the bottom of each page, you can press one of three or four buttons, and, it’s measuring momentum.

To me, screenwriting and reading screenplays is about momentum. How do I feel about turning the page? Am I eager? Am I sort of interested? Is it like, okay, I’ll see what happens. And I turn the page. So you click one of those buttons to turn the page. You get an automatic response that way. Now you can leave freeform comments on each page, and then there’s a bit more of a questionnaire at the end. And again, you can leave freeform comments, but what you end up with is structured data from the aesthetic interaction of reader and writing that’s actually graft. So you get enough reads and you start to see patterns in how people feel about turning the page so that you could say, “Oh, geez, several people here have… this looks like a lag between pages 37 and 45.

Is something going on there?” It just gives you a cue to look at that because people will click those buttons. You get really good at not giving it too much thought, which is ideal. You don’t want too much friction in the read. But even apart from the free form comments, which can be helpful or not, in this way, you get just at a glance, you can see if there’s something you might wanna address or just take a look at, maybe you want that quiet period in your screen, and maybe you don’t.

Ashley: I’m curious, have you run one of your own scripts through it? I’d be curious to just hear like a real-world example of how you used it yourself, who you sent it to and sort of the feedback you got.

Bob: Well, I’ve been testing it in my classes at USC. So first mostly they’ve been small workshops. The last class I did was 150 students in a lecture class. So in that class I put in scenes and entire scripts, like a draft of Newsies was there. I was able to see with 150 students how the graph lines stack up. So it’s really interesting to look at, also interesting to look at the freeform comments on things that, you know, sometimes they’re flagging things that I really agree with or that I think, where are they coming from? But you get enough responses and it starts to things even out, and you start to see how it’s working. So, yes, I’ve been… we’re still somewhat in a, I wouldn’t say it’s a testing phase.

People are using it full out and sharing screenplays with their group or the people they’ve selected to read their stuff. Most of the postings are, I want this person or these three people to be able to see the script and not in general. We’re starting to experiment with running little contests, and for now, it’s free at this point. So the first contest will be I’m actually the prize. It’s funny to me, but I’ll read the winners and have half hour conversations with the winner. So later on, we’ll do other prizes, producers for… mostly it’s geared to people who are trying to be better writers. That opens doors to the industry, looking in and discovering talent. My focus is not on exposing you to the world. There are other places that do that. This is to do the work, get responses, refine your work, make it better and better.

Ashley: And I’m curious, and this is really just sort of a intellectual question. You know, Scriptshadow was known for publishing scripts and writing a review of those scripts before the movies were actually released. And they got a lot of heat and blow back on this thing. I always thought it was a mistake that studios could actually gain a lot of valuable insight. It seems to me, it’s like if a studio put out a script and under this, using and just got thousands of people to read the script, they might actually be able to gain some real insight into their own productions. But it always seems like the studios are afraid to kinda let the cat out of the bag. They’re afraid of people, you know, the teasers and the, blowing the ending and that kind of thing.

Bob: Yeah. I think that is one of the directions I wanna head in. Because right now, the only time you can get a response to a film is after you’ve made the film and then you can have a focus group and a test screening and all that stuff. Great, but it’s a little late. Especially in an era where you really need to flag certain sensitivities that can be missed in the development process. I agree with you. I think that that’s, that isn’t… it’s a tool that’s perfect for that. I can see that if I were a studio, I wouldn’t wanna do that with a Marvel release or the next Harry Potter, because there’s already a public profile, but for those mid-range scripts where you’re thinking, okay, I’m trying to reach this audience.

If I know my readership, then I can invite certain people to read, maybe even get them paid, to read the script and really get a response for the studio to be able to say, “Gee, we missed something here.” It won’t guarantee that if everybody loves it, it doesn’t mean the movie’s gonna be great or will work. There are too many things that have to happen right after the script to make the movie work. But it would be really good turkey insurance. It would tell you whether or not you’re really missing your target audience. And that I hope is a good way to monetize this platform and keep it either free or cheap for developing writers.

Ashley: Got you. So how can people find out about Zoodiker? What is the URL for that, is tis www.zoodiker.com?

Bob: Yeah, www.zoodiker.com will take you to the website where we you can then have a look and sign up again. It’s free right now. So it’s well-worth experiment. It’s spelled Z-O-O-D-I-K-E-R.com. So it’s the phonetic version of my name because I want it to be secret about my involvement.

Ashley: Got you. And what’s the best way for people to keep up with what you’re doing? Twitter, Facebook, a blog. Is there anything that you actively post on, we can round that stuff up for the show notes?

Bob: It’s sad, but no.

Ashley: I can’t say I blame you.

Bob: It’s just I’m not interested in much of a public profile. It was a real fight for me to put my face in front of even my own creation Zoodiker. So no, it would just be in the trades or something like that.

Ashley: Okay. Well, perfect. Bob, I appreciate your coming on and talking with me good luck with Zoodiker and hopefully we can have you back on in the future.

Bob: Thank you. I’d love to. I enjoyed. Thanks so much.

Ashley: Thank you, Bob. We’ll talk to you later.

Bob: Okay. Bye. Bye.

Ashley: Bye.

A quick plug for the SYS Screenwriting Analysis Service. It’s a really economical way to get a high-quality professional evaluation on your screenplay. When you buy our three pack, you get evaluations at just $67 per script for feature films and just $55 for teleplays. All the readers have professional experience reading for studios, production companies, contests and agencies. You can read a short bio on each reader on our website and you can pick the reader who you think is the best fit for your script. Turnaround time is usually just a few days but rarely more than a week. The readers will evaluate your script on six key factors- concept, character, structure and marketability, tone and overall craft, which includes formatting, spelling and grammar.

Every script will get a grade of pass, consider or recommend, which should help you roughly understand where your script might rank if you were to submit it to a production company or agency. We can provide an analysis on features or television scripts. We also do proofreading without any analysis. We will also look at a treatment or outline and give you the same analysis on it. So if you’re looking to vet some of your project ideas, this is a great way to do it. We will also write your logline and synopsis for you. You can add this logline and synopsis writing service to an analysis or you can simply purchase this service as a standalone product. As a bonus, if your screenplay gets a recommend or a consider from one of our readers, you get to list the screenplay in the SYS Select database, which is a database for producers to find screenplays and a big part of our SYS Select program.

Producers are in the database searching for material on a daily basis, so it’s another great way to get your material in front of them. As a further bonus, if your script gets a recommend from one of our readers, your screenplay will get included in our monthly Best Of newsletter. Each month we send out a newsletter that highlights the best screenplays that have come through our script analysis service. This is monthly newsletter that goes out to our list of over 400 producers who are actively looking for material, so again, this is another great way to get your material out there. So if you want a professional evaluation of your screenplay at a very reasonable price, check out www.sellingyourscreenplay.com/consultants.

On the next episode of the podcast, I’m gonna be interviewing book author Paula Sheridan who runs the Page Turner Awards, which is a novel book contest. She comes on the show to talk about her own career as an author, how she got some of her books into print, and to introduce us to her contest, again, it’s called the Page Turner Awards. So if you write novels or have ever thought about perhaps writing novels, definitely check out next week’s episode. That’s the show. Thank you for listening.