To Partner or Not to Partner

That is the question… posed by many a writer since the dawn of time.  Sure, there are perks of having a collaborator to confide in, collaborate with, to count on.  But what if they don’t like you ending sentences with prepositions?  What if they don’t like asking rhetorical questions?  Where are you then?  You’re mired in conflict is where.  And that’s got its slings and arrows too:  a) mental health  b) physical health  c) emotional health  d) all of the above.  After all, it’s not easy to sleep at night when you’re at odds over characters and commas.  Especially if there’s money on the line.  

Say you sell your screenplay for $100,000.  Not a bad day at the office, right?  But once your agent, lawyer, union, taxman and partner take their cut, you’re at $25k.  If the endeavor took you 12 weeks working 8 hours a day, you’re making $50 an hour. Sure you wanna share?  Well, if it’s going to get you where you want faster, funner, better than flying solo, then hell yeah, why not?  It all really comes down to you.  It’s not for everyone.  But then again, neither is Chunky Monkey.  Ask yourself… am I invigorated by the process of working with someone else?  Inspired to do my best?  Able to check my ego at the door?  Only you can answer these questions.  If you decide to go down the partnership path, here are a few suggestions… 

Find someone compatible in style, so it won’t seem like your writing is modern and theirs medieval.  But look for a different skillset.  If you’re a story pro, but need perspective on character growth, find someone who’s a champ at that.  Select  someone who shares the same work ethic, will be candid but tactful in communication and fills in the blanks when you’re staring at the page.  Are they willing to go the distance, not only with the writing, but with the selling?  Like a marriage, it’s not going to be hunky dory all the time.  But in a good partnership the good times will far outweigh the bad ones.  And in the end, you will have a created a kick ass piece of writing that can win over the blackest of hearts… together.