"A writer should strive to be a person on whom nothing is lost." -Henry James
"I took one of those 'Which Gossip Girl are you?' quizzes, and it said I was the dad’s guitar.” - Liz Lemon
Originally from Buffalo, NY, I've been a Los Angeles resident for 11 years. While studying television and film at Ithaca College, I interned at The Weinstein Company (NY), Red Wagon Entertainment and Rogue Pictures. During this time, I learned to write script coverage under the guidance of insightful creative executives and assistants. After graduating and moving to Los Angeles permanently in 2007, I got a job as an assistant at Paradigm Talent Agency in Beverly Hills. Starting in a mailroom that churned out paper (!) scripts, I soon moved up to a desk in the Feature Literary Department, where I assisted an agent who represented high-level film writers. Listening in on his phone calls and interacting with his clients helped me learn about what producers and studio executives were looking for. Since Paradigm didn't have a Story Department at the time, I also became one of a handful of assistants who earned overtime pay for reading scripts and writing coverage outside of work. For a while, it felt like I was the only person reading the romantic comedies Katherine Heigl didn't want to do.
While at Paradigm, I started the blog "Amanda the Aspiring TV Writer," later called "The Aspiring TV Writer and Screenwriter Blog." From 2007-2015, I wrote about the assistant and agency world, networking, job hunting, internships, writing fellowships and more. I also interviewed many assistants and writers. Eventually, I ran out of time and topics, but I've left the blog up as a resource.
In 2009, I left the assistant world to become an English tutor, blogger and professional script reader for companies like Sierra/Affinity, Mandalay, Broad Green Pictures and Amazon Studios. For three years, I also wrote script coverage for ScriptShark, a company that provided feedback directly to aspiring writers. I learned how to shift my perspective based on whether I was reading for a producers looking for potential in a flawed project or for a novice writer looking for encouragement. I've been assigned everything from packaged comedies by Oscar winners to first drafts of thrillers from brand new writers. I've also read books (to assess potential adaptations) and screenplay contest submissions.
In my own writing life, I've developed comedy features and pilots with various producers, directors and actresses. I was also hired to adapt the Glamour article "We Dated Our Way Across America" into a feature and have developed sketches and short-form ideas with digital companies. I am a member of the WGAw. If you're a producer or director and think I might be right to adapt or rewrite a project of yours, please send me a message on the Contact page!
In May 2018, I published a book called Wedding Planning for the Busy Feminist. It is available in paperback, e-book and audiobook!
As of March 2019, I work as a reader for Vertice 360 (and stay busy with all my private clients). I am currently writing a romantic comedy feature set in the world of home renovation TV.
More About Me
For more about my background and early days in Hollywood, check out the Hollywood Bound and Down podcast I did with Joshua Caldwell.