I didn’t see it in the job description when I first signed up for the internship at the Hollywood TV and movie production company, but by the third day it was clear: Much of my time would be spent crushing people’s dreams. Not discouraging them, not deterring them, not suggesting they would be better invested in practical pursuits like scrapbooking or slum-lording, but outright devastation of people’s dreams, loud and declarative. You. Have. Failed. I, intern, you see, where my main purpose is to deliver salads to powerful people, quickly and with all the god damn peppers removed, thank you very much. As a side job, I am also often asked to perform what is called ‘script coverage,’ in which I take the pristine, coveted gem of someone’s imagination and in the matter of hours reduce it to a single word: PASS. “Please,” the authors seem to say, “Recognize my unique talent and do one thing to help me realize the desire I have harbored since the day of my creation, and recommend this script.” To which I generally reply, “No,” and then go pick up a salad. I don’t relish the job of Dream Crusher, but the worst part is that I do it for free—as if I’m doing a favor for friends. “Hey, could you come over tomorrow and help me dash the hopes of aspiring writers for a few hours?”
“Sure,” I say. “Sure I could.”
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