How TV Pilots Make It To Series


TV shows are introduced to audiences  and tested for their viability in a variety of ways.  Think of a TV pilot as the first page of a screenplay. If it ain’t good, nobody wants to read any further. TV pilots are not always filmed as part of the entire TV series, although that is the…

How Do Single-Cam TV Shows Differ From Multi-Cam Ones?


Television shows are often referred to as being single-cam or multi-cam.  This directly relates to the style of filming. Back in the day when TV production was more straightforward, mutli-cam referred to 30-minute sitcoms and single-cam to hour-long dramas. This general rule of thumb isn’t always the case any longer. It most closely correlates with…

What Format Should You Write In?


Screenwriters often wonder what format best suits their story. Is it a film, TV show or web series? So many questions. Screenwriting is such as versatile writing form, that stories can be told across multiple platforms. The key differential between them is time. FEATURE FILMS This is a full-length film typically spanning 90-120 minutes. Generally…

What Is The Future Of Digital TV Shows


The future of TV is sunny with a strong chance of disruption. We’re hitting the 500 new TV shows being produced each year mark. You read that correctly. Five hundred! This creates a mind-boggling array of oppportunities for screenwriters to get their work produced. Is that a good thing? Sure. There is something for everyone….

How to Ace Your TV Spec Script


The requirements for TV writers to secure their next writing gig are generally either an original TV pilot or a spec script of an existing TV show. These are cyclical, so it’s advisable to have one of each type in your arsenal. Be strategic with which TV show you choose to write. Don’t go for…

How To Seduce A Script Reader On The First Page Of Your Screenplay


Script readers are overworked. They read at least 2-5 screenplays per day in search of their next big hit. Statistically, around half the screenplays they read are poor or worse. Despite their wanting to enjoy all the film scripts they request, they are disappointed the majority of the time. Another 30-45% are average. Not good…

What To Consider When Writing Binge TV


It’s still the golden age of television. There are more TV content providers than ever and ostensibly more writing opportunities for us. Yay!! Television has evolved from broadcast weekly TV series to binge viewing on various streaming platforms. The term ‘bingeing’ typically has negative connotations, but not so much anymore. Binge watching is the new…

Writing The Second Episode Of Your Original TV Series. No pressure.


TV pilots have a special place in the world of TV writing. They serve a very specific purpose. I’ve previously written about how to write a TV pilot that producers want to make. They must introduce the world of the TV series, the main characters, their dilemmas, the format, and some clue of the arc…

How To Write The Engine Of Your TV Series


There is a term bandied around TV writers rooms called the ENGINE. What exactly is the engine of a TV show? As its name suggests, the simplest way to describe your story engine is to define what drives every episode in the series. The engine is the nerve center of your TV series. It defines…

8 Types Of Scripts Every Self Respecting Screenwriter Needs To Know


Screenwriters are told to have two key types of screenplays in their arsenal. Spec scripts and original screenplays. Hands up if you know the difference between the two. For those of you who didn’t raise their hands, here are the answers: 1) ORIGINAL SCRIPT I’m sure you can guess what this means. Any screenplay that…

8 Sweet TV Deals For TV Writers


It’s at the golden age for TV. It’s also a pretty sweet time for TV writers, especially if they create their own TV series. What Terms Can TV Writers Negotiate? OVERALL TV NETWORK DEAL This is the big daddy of TV writing deals. This is where the big bucks lie and is generally only available to…