What about first impressions with those all-important execs at LSF?
In an office, everything is about how you look. My history is IT, which is a ‘new’ industry. The nerds and geeks finally found their place in corporate world, exempt from suits – and they created their own uniform. A rebellious, never before allowed look of jeans and t-shirts – the programmers never actually met a customer, right? The techie guys crawl under desks, it’s allowed. No overtly rude of offensive t-shirts, but logos and long hair and scruffy jeans abound. Most call centre people nowadays sit in a large room with no windows! In fact, they’re probably based in a 3rd world country, who knows what they wear?
…Until you get promoted, when you slot right back into Office World and the suit comes out – the default uniform that reassures everyone you’re a professional.
An interesting article http://leejessup.com/lee-s-blog/screenwriters-are-you-paranoid-or-industry-really-looking/ by Lee Jessop came to my attention. Guess what, the execs in showbiz are the same as the execs everywhere else. They expect clean and tidy. They judge us based on what we present them, for much the same reasons:
- Can we work with others?
- Would others want to work with us (do
- Is their impression of us professional? Would we deliver on time? Would we deliver to our promise?
They can't know this in advance, so they use the same tools to assess it any interviewer would when considering a candidate for a job.
If I were ‘interviewing’, I’d have my stereotypes; I suspect the sci-fi element will wear jeans, t-shirts with a logo, and many men will have long hair. That’s a nerdy cross-over, and I’ll be interested to see if it’s true. Will romance writers be flouncy?
Would that influence me to think they’d be better in their genre if they fit my preconceived ‘look’?
It crossed my mind to wear my suit! It’s my uniform after all for every serious business meeting I’ve attended. But my passion for writing is certainly influenced by my hatred of being an IT drone.
I need to create a new uniform for me, smart and clean (no coffee accidents on the train), professional yet defiant of the stereotypes and something I’m comfortable in. Writing is about self-expression, so despite my general ennui about my attire (yep, ‘fraid so), I shall apply some thought to how I look when attending LSF.
If I wear a shirt, I shall almost certainly iron it.