If you live in Iowa and are working on an MG novel, probably the last thing on your mind right now is selling the film rights to your book. That’s not a bad thing. You should stay focused on completing the book and telling the story to the best of your ability. If you do end up getting it published, and that could very well happen, then selling the film rights to your book is not as farfetched as you might think. One Hollywood executive told me that one of the best ways to break into the movie business is by publishing a novel. Why is that? Well, and I’m sure you’ve noticed, most the movies that are getting made now, particularly in the children’s genre, are based on books. The movie studios feel this is a safer bet because there is already a built-in audience.
The fact that you live in Iowa is by no means a deterrent to selling movie rights. Your agent will handle that on your behalf. Typically a literary agent in NY will team up with an agent in LA who specializes in selling movie rights to books. Your project is co-agented. After you sell the movie rights and consume several bottle of champagne, you will be faced with a major decision. Do you want to write the screenplay adaptation of your book or do you want the studios to hire a seasoned screenwriter to handle that tricky task? If you do aspire to become a screenwriter and reap the enormous financial rewards then you should begin learning the craft of screenwriting ASAP. Syd Field has written many definitive books on the subject. Jay Asher, the mega successful YA author, told me the best book he ever read on writing in any genre was a screenwriting book. According to Jay, writing for film forces you to be more concise and plot driven. It forces you to tell the story with true velocity. Thus, exploring the art of screenwriting can actually enhance your storytelling skills as a novelist. And you might win an Oscar along the way. Why not give it a shot?