Protect what you love.
The current political climate has been a rude awakening for a lot of us. It's shown how we cannot afford to be fair-weather activists when it comes to preserving our livelihoods. Be it national, local, or even union politics, one of the most effective ways to contribute is simply to vote. To cast your support for what you love and what you do.
There also has to be enough representation on the ballot to let you find those choices to support in the first place. That desire drove me to run for the Board. I'm eager to defend the rights and core benefits our guild has earned before all of it comes under immediate threat. And I want to collaborate with our leadership to predict the next arenas so we can establish a presence and a precedent when it really matters.
As a close friend said it: "It's either this, or therapy."
Take a look at my Candidate Statement (below) for more.
Priority one for us is the fight we’ve already started: Revising the agency agreement. It’s a fight we have the leverage and the authority to win. A literary agent must first and foremost work for their writing clients. Packaging has become a monster that feeds on our inventions. The major agencies will not give up that habit quietly or easily, but it’s an attainable goal. And every boutique agency in town is rooting for us.
I admire what the current board has done for us. I want to see their work continue. Should I join their ranks, I’d add my support for programs currently in the works that bolster the guild’s ability to enforce timely payment and expand and protect our creative rights. I believe these initiatives will shift studio policy once employers realize, for example, we will collect data about the commencement and delivery of every contractual step.
I’ll also have my attention on the plight of the TV writer. The last round of collective bargaining earned us a victory against abusively long contracts that shrank actual income and disallowed writers the ability to find work between seasons. Next, I’d like to tackle the growing problem of the “mini-room” where networks get all the work of a full room at scale. Then there’s the flipside of the season contract: Short terms that prevent many writers from producing their episodes before their time is up. If we don’t nurture the process to groom future showrunners, those jobs will go to non-WGA members and non-writers.
Beyond that, I feel we’re a strong board when we run the gamut of member interests. We don’t want a Power Rangers team with everyone wearing the same color. To that point, I believe we need stronger representation in video game writing.
Video game business has long been outpacing film business in profits and that trend will hold. At the same time, they’re learning a key ingredient to a hit game—from a little indie like What Remains of Edith Finch to a major title like God of War—is compelling writing. Employers will continue to knock on our doors in search of writers up to the task.
I began working with Riot Games and their multibillion-dollar title League of Legends in part to establish a beachhead for the guild. As they look to expand their entertainment slate with both TV and film projects, it should be through WGA contracts. And it’s my aim to grow out that guild presence there more each year, including game-specific writing. But that’s just one studio among many giants. If a member is working toward a relationship with a game company, or wants to maintain an existing one, we should do what we can to establish or maintain a relationship between the company and the WGA—through outreach, access, and precedent.
When I first ran for the Board of Directors more than a decade ago, there was a distinct opposition among two groups, or slates. This year, I’m not running against anyone. Everyone on this ticket has real value and brings a strong voice. Whether I get to join them this cycle or not, I feel confident in our future with these candidates.
These WGAw members have graciously given their support.
If you're a WGAw member and would like to add your name to this list, you can do so by clicking the ENDORSE ME button below. It takes a matter of seconds. I'm grateful for your attention.
Chad Gomez Creasey
Felicia D. Henderson
Randi Mayem Singer
Terence Paul Winter