My time with the FBI

I finally have an answer to the resurfacing, insomnia-causing question: Does she draw her gun or not? OK, the insomnia is an exaggeration. But there are tons of police work details that can cause sleepless hours. Writing crime more often than not involves police detectives or even the FBI. As a writer, you can copy behavior and procedures you have seen in other TV shows or in other movies. But you never know if that’s really the real deal? After 7 weeks at the FBI Citizen Academy in Los Angeles, one night per week, I’m no special agent, but I have acquired a lot of knowledge about the FBI as an institution, their values, regulations, as well as insight when it comes to the real people behind the badge, their attitude, motivations, their idiosyncrasies… We heard case studies about homegrown terrorism, cybersecurity, the spectacular sheriff Lee Baca case and his role in a scheme to obstruct an FBI investigation of abuses in LA county jails, and so much more. We collected evidence, went through a shooting simulation, and even fired some real guns at the shooting range. It was a lot of fun. Now, I’ve got the time to lose my sleep over other screenplay-related questions, for example, how to construct a great joke 😉

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