Coverfly Endorsed Writer, Dan Kavanagh, signed with a literary manager at Waldorf Entertainment after the Coverfly Team provided extensive career consulting.
Brandon was kind enough to share his success story with us.
How It All Began
Screenwriting was the easiest way for me to feel a part of a business that I loved but, in my teens, seemed very far away. You don't need equipment or a crew to start writing, which was liberating in those early days when I was writing mostly terrible stuff that veered dangerously close to plagiarism of whatever great film I'd seen that week.
I think it all starts with education and a curiosity about what makes a thing (be it a movie, a book, a piece of music, etc) "good." I fed my curiosity by becoming a regular at my local Blockbuster and, later, taking obscene advantage of Netflix's now-defunct 3 DVDs-at-a-time membership (thanks, guys!). When I started writing movies, Final Draft made it so intuitive that it sort of removed any barrier to entry in terms of formatting, and since then it's been off to the races!
"Screenwriting was the easiest way for me to feel a part of a business that I loved but, in my teens, seemed very far away."
Money and time. I nearly sold a script to Warner Bros right out of undergraduate film school, so it was a blow when, shortly after, I had to return home to help my family dig out of a financial hole. Doing so took years and I didn't have the option to take an absurdly low-paying assistant position -- I needed to earn a living immediately, which drew me away from the Film/TV industry to a motley assortment of day jobs. I was always writing but, if I didn't have a near-obsessive drive, there were many times I could have been completely blown off the path.
I think it's an important issue to talk about because mine is only one story of money/access being an obstacle. There are innumerable others for whom that barrier proved understandably too high.
One thing that really helped was investing in myself by attending UT-Austin's MFA Screenwriting program. The education was excellent and, compared to other top programs, it is really affordable. Austin is also a really cool city and the experience provided me with the time and attention to grow as a writer, build a portfolio and, per their website, enjoy the "breakfast taco and coffee culture that students love."
How Did Coverfly Help?
Coverfly has been amazing. The team, especially Geoffroy, has worked hard to get my stuff out there and connected me with my manager, who is a total badass and has really helped my career already. They work tirelessly and are very specific about who they approach. I've been super impressed by how they do business and hope to continue the relationship for a long time.
"Stay true to themselves and always write the story you're burning to tell rather than what you think, or people tell you, will sell."
What Comes Next?
I'm currently staffed and focused on the Showtime series I'm working on, but definitely planning next steps for early 2022 -- both in staffing, and developing my pilot, "St. Marie's."
Advice For Aspiring Writers
In some order, 1.) don't write to the market, 2.) don't be afraid to throw out what isn't working and 3.) be persistent. A year ago I was beginning to re-outline a feature that people had discouraged me from writing in the first place because it was big and animated. A year later, that project has attached a producer, an Academy Award nominated director, attracted major talent interest and got me a manager.
I think part of why it's been received so enthusiastically is that it's obviously written from a place of passion. So, I would encourage all writers to stay true to themselves and always write the story you're burning to tell rather than what you think, or people tell you, will sell.
My first meeting with Netflix will be a major "full circle" moment because of the instrumental role they played in my film education.