One of my favorite titles to use for myself is Creative Consultant, which is an old end-credit from the motion picture industry. According to Wikipedia, Creative Consultant was a title used for a screenwriter who consulted on the script, but who didn’t actually do any credited writing on the finished script. Since Creative Consultant is not one of the approved WGA titles, it has fallen into disuse in favor of Executive Consultant,Story Consultant, Script Consultant or some similar WGA-approved title.
I often use the title Script Analyst, but that’s a completely different animal. A Script Analyst is a Reader, either the employee of a Production Company, Movie Studio, Talent Agency, or Public Relations firm, or an Indie contractor like me, who reads screenplays under submission, and writes Script Coverage on that script, for the purpose of either recommending that script or recommending that the company “Pass” on said script. Indie Script Analysts are most often contracted by screenwriters themselves. I have written coverage, I’ve even written or rewritten a solid logline for those scripts. In the case of doing Coverage for a writer, you’re actually recommending changes in story, plot, character development, theme, tone, what works and what does not work. I’ve been a Script Analyst for a Hollywood Publicist, but we were working for the screenwriter, so my job was as I just described, more of an editor or an uncredited writer than a true First Reader.
But, back to my job as a Creative Consultant.
I’ve been using Creative Consultant since sometime in the 1980s. Since I don’t work in the movie industry, I’ve adapted this old title for other purposes. Since my writing background and my talents are so varied… I’ve worked as a journalist, a stand-up comedian, a gag writer, a playwright, an ASCAP-member songwriter, an advertising copywriter, and a novelist… and that means that I am in a unique position to be a consultant and many different creative projects.
So, whether somebody, be they client or drinking buddy, need me to do something or advise them of something, or simply offer my opinion of something… something in the realm of Creativity that is… then whatever I come up with is, you guessed it, a Creative Consultation. It could be something as simple as, “What color looks better, red or blue?” “Purple.” “Purple? Ya think?” “Yes, I do.”
Tah-dah… Creative Consultant Chris Jay Becker, at your service. Here’s my PayPal information.
Of course, in REAL life I’m not quite that crass. After all, it’s not about ME, it’s about your project, your product, your creativity. I’m just here to help you realize your dreams, your goals, your vision. If I can use my many years as a freelance journalist, novelist, poet, stand-up comic, advertising copywriter, editor, or salesperson to help you realize those goals, then that’s what it’s all about.
What do I get out of it? Well, I do love writing. I also love editing. If I can make a few dollars doing those things, then that’s MY dream being realized. I’ve never been one of those artists or writers who create because I “Have something to say.” That’s a Rookie attitude. Nobody cares what I have to say. I don’t even care what I have to say.
Let’s make some Art. Or let’s sell some stuff.
Let’s do both.
Chris Jay Becker