A few weeks back, the International Screenwriters' Association newsletter carried a discreet, friendly-looking ad for a script report from The Happy Writers. I usually stay well away from all elements of the huge industry that 'supports' aspiring screenwriters. I've jumped through the hoops of getting a novel published by a major publisher and I'm used to saving my money and going it alone. But because, alas, "The Happy Writers" is such a contradiction in terms for most of us, I looked more closely. The Happy Writers were offering a 5 page report for $100. That seemed reasonable to me and before I knew it, I'd sent off my payment.
A guy called Joey Tuccio got back to me and said he'd have the script read and reviewed in a matter of days. I haven't told him this but I immediately thought of another Joey T and imagined Joey Tribbiani from Friends, sitting in his leather recliner next to the hideous white china dog, reading my script with his lips moving as he tried to adapt the male protagonist (a 48 year old operatic baritone) role for himself.
But this Joey was articulate, perceptive and concise. His script report, returned within a matter of days, pointed out small glitches and hiccups that should have been blindingly obvious . More than that, he 'got' the emotional heart of the story and could point out what might block another reader from feeling what I wanted them to feel. And he followed it up with a half hour phone call.
So here's a recommendation for "Happy Joey" in Hollywood. Money well spent and an enjoyable encounter to boot!