If I stop trusting, do I become bitter? I don’t want to become bitter. But, that does not mean I can’t operate without caution. Caution is our friend. It makes us pause and make sure we protect ourselves.
Recently, I had an experience with someone I trusted because of an existing relationship with a friend. But, at the end of the journey, I learned my idea & concept was stolen. I wonder how anyone can justify this and in what world they think this is right without giving due credit or compensation to the person who did the development.
I learned there are shark infested waters in the entertainment arena. It taught me a life lesson and one I need to remember.
Everyone can be nice … or pretend to be. But, as artists, our currency is in our ideas, stories and execution of those ideas. Would you just go into a building or a store and take all the money in your bank account and throw it around? NO, right? Well, don’t do this with your creativity. Give it value and currency. Protect it. Guard it. Respect it. Make others do the same.
Make sure you copyright all your ideas, written or video works. Make sure when you talk to people, do not enter agreements idly or arbitrarily sign agreements or documents because you are anxious. Make sure you have a non-disclosure agreement available when you talk to certain people or companies to protect your idea and your interaction. Does not hurt to register works with the Writers Guild.
It is worth the money to have a lawyer review your documents or understand what you are doing or who you are talking to so they can guide you and advise you on how to protect your intellectual and creative properties. You do yourself a disservice otherwise.
Take it from someone who was burned and learned a lesson. Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me.
Protecting our stories and property is up to us – so be responsible and be the proper caretaker of your creative and intellectual property.
Do you have any horror stories? Any good stories? Sharon and I would love to hear from you!!