In light of the blog on TomCruise.com giving a nice mention to Screenwriting from Iowa, I posted that Mark Johnson, one of the producers of the Oscar winning- best film Rain Man, graduated from the University of Iowa. Then a friend reminded me of another Iowa connection to Rain Man and that is the original story and co-writer of that Oscar-winning script was Barry Morrow, who also graduated from the University of Iowa.
That lead me to a You Tube interview with Barry Morrow where the Oscar & Emmy-winning Morrow was asked this question:
Stephen Jennings: What advise would you offer to beginning screenwriters who want to get started in the industry? Who don’t have an agent, don’t have any contacts, and maybe don’t even live in Southern California.
Barry Morrow: I would say, stay where you are. Don’t come here (Los Angeles) yet. Unless you want to be a professional waiter. I would say live with your parents, save your money, and don’t write one script—write five scripts. Then pick the best one. And never fall into the trap of believing you’re going to sell your first screenplay, you won’t. It hasn’t happened, I don’t care what you’ve read…You might have it optioned— for about a buck, over and over and over. But someday you’ll look back and say, “I wasn’t the writer I needed to be.” So just write a few more scripts and that will serve you the best. And then you won’t have to be living in an apartment paying all the money you’re earning from this waitress or waiter job you have in West Hollywood to pay for your apartment and not have the time to write the scripts from mom and dad’s basement.”