Monday, July 30, 2007

PAGE Semi-Finalists Announced

Quarter-finalist doesn't quite sound as cool as semi-finalist, but I guess Juliana and I will have to take it...for this year, anyway.

These people are our competition:

TV DRAMA PILOT

ANGEL WARS
Don Perez
CHIANG
B.R. Stanley
COLLARED
William Beaucher
CORPORATE WARRIORS
J.J. Grady & T.P. Grady
DARKNESS RISING
Ben Chananie
EN ROUTE
Gia Gordon
ESTRANGED
Rebecca Ortese & Craig Miller
ETERNITY BLUES
Miguel Martinez
FAST FORWARD
Joey Hargrove
GHOST TOWN
Michael Sullivan
THE GRAVEDIGGER'S UNION
Jack Callous
THE HALCYONS
Solomon Wariso
THE HERALD
Kathryn Wood
JOHNSON'S PAGES
Bill Flannigan
KAYFABE
David Lee
KING'S CREATION
Rudy San Miguel
THE LABEL
Chris Gallo
THE MAGAZINE
Matthew Kosinski
MONEY
Emma Thomas
THE O'CONNELL RUFFIANS
Alexander Koehne
SECOND CHANCE INN
Linda Freeny & Mark Moore
SHIVER
Adrienne Lusby & Emiliana Monahan Dore
TOIL AND TROUBLE
Sarah Jorgensen
U.N.
David Wisehart, Wade Major & Tim Cogshell
THE ZETTO EQUATION
Patrice Williams

We must learn all we can of them if we are to destroy them, so if you have any information whatsoever on their whereabouts, please notify us IMMEDIATELY. Our lives are in your hands.

Joss Whedon Trips Small Child...and Other TALES FROM THE CON


Apologies. This ended up being really long.

The fiancee and I only made it down to the Con for Saturday and Sunday this year, but that was more than enough time to leave with a few stories to tell.

My biggest regret was that our lazy asses didn't make it down in time for the Pushing Daisies screening and Q&A. I heard it was great, and now we'll just have to wait until the actual premiere like real people. I hate being a real person.

My second biggest regret is that this isn't my story. Damn you, Furey!

But enough with regret. Here's my STORY OF THE CON.

Friday:
8pm - Head out to Wangs for copious amounts of beer, fat and coma-inducing food to celebrate how awesome I am.

Saturday:
12am - Arrive home drunk and print out stuff for the Con. See that the registration material says we can't check in until 9:30 the next morning and freak out because the Pushing Daisies panel begins at 9:15. For those of you keeping score at home, that means the panel would be going on before we could even get in. Suckiness.

12:02am - Realize that this means we can sleep longer and just say screw it.

5am - I wake up excited and try to go back to sleep so I don't wake Jul up.

5:20am - The alarm goes off and Jul's still sleepy; resets it. But now I have an excuse, so I get up and start packing. (The beauty of a two-day excursion: 10 minute packing is not only acceptable, but expected.)

5:45am - I guilt Jul into getting up because I'm a jerk.

6:15am - Grab Buzz colas and Forbidden Donuts for the road.
Mmm, forbidden...

6:25am - Quick stop for cash.

6:35am - On the road again, just can't wait to get on the road again...

8:00am - Friends have arrived at the Con and tell us they are letting people in early. Mother#$%er!

8:35am - ...just can't wait to get off the road again...

9:25am - Arrive at the Con after parking at the hotel (6 blocks away, baby) and make it through the line pretty quickly.

9:35am - Decide that it's silly to go into Pushing Daisies late and instead head to Bionic Woman at 10. It's in Ballroom 20. Remember that for later.

10:50am - Short Bionic review: In terms of sci-fi TV, somewhere between the quality of Smallville and Heroes. There's the potential for a great show here, but right now I'd say it's hovering around "decent" to "pretty good." Hopefully they'll have time to iron out the kinks and give us the next great ass-kicking woman show. Jul and I decide to leave Ballroom 20 and grab a quick bite to eat on the exhibition floor before returning to the same room for the Heroes panel at 12:45.


11:20am - Jul and I return to Ballroom 20 and realize that we are really, really dumb. A line of thousands has formed, hoping against hope to gaze upon Masi Oka and company, and the crowd control people are giving out wildly different information. Some say stay in line; some say the line is closed for Heroes. Others say the line for Battlestar (same room, 2pm) is closed, and a few are even saying that the line for Ballroom 20 itself is closed for the day.

11:25am - Jul and I split up. I stay at the back of the line and she makes the 10 minute trek to the front so she can ask questions of the crowd control people at the door.

11:45am - More confusion. More misinformation. Our friend covering the panel has trouble getting in with his press pass because the room is already at capacity.

12:00pm - Suddenly the line dissolves in front of me and I begin the long trek toward Jul and the Ballroom 20 entrance.

12:02pm - I run into the person in front of me and realize that apparently the line hasn't been dissolved quite yet. Moving again.

12:10pm - The line hasn't been dissolved. Oh, no. It's just being moved outside of the convention center and into the 90 degree heat. Much better.

12:25pm - Still in the sun. Jul joins me after she is told that the outside line is the best chance of getting into the room ... sometime.

12:40pm - Another friend joins us in the line after checking with the crowd control people at the door and having them confirm that the outside line is the best bet.

She has a story for us: "The guy from the Pushing Daisies panel..." (Bryan Fuller? Yes.) "...was trying to get into the Heroes panel. He went up to the staff people at the door and said 'I'm sorry I'm so late, but I was at another panel and I need to get into this one.' 'Sorry, room's closed.' 'No, really, I'm ON THE PANEL and I need to get in.' 'The room is closed. No one gets in.' Yes, that's right. Bryan Fuller, creator of Dead Like Me, Wonderfalls and Pushing Daisies can't get in. One of the co-executive producers and the writer of two episodes of Heroes last year can't get in. Gotta love it.

12:55pm - Back inside. Air conditioning. Thank god.

1:30pm - I decide to see how long the line is in front of us and end up going down to the exhibition floor to waste time and see if I can get one of those giant Superman Doomsday/Smallville bags everyone has or a Harry Potter bag: no such luck.

1:50pm - Back upstairs and the sea of people surging toward me tells me that the Heroes panel is letting out and gives me hope that maybe, just maybe, we'll make it into the Battlestar panel.

2:05pm - Holy crap. Only three hours of waiting and we're back in the same room that took us 2 minutes to make it into at 10am that morning. Huzzah.

2:15pm - Panel begins. Women of Battlestar. Sweet.

3:15pm - Battlestar panel is pretty fun and entertaining. No groundbreaking news that I can think of, but I did become the seven millionth person to realize that Katee Sackoff would make a great Harley Quinn.Come on, Nolan, you know you want to. We move closer for the next panel.

3:30pm - The Futurama people brought free comics with them for us. At a comics convention. Craziness.

4:30pm - Possibly the best panel I saw all weekend. Five cast members did a table read of the comic, doing about 20 different characters between them. Kickass.

4:31pm - We creep ever closer, for the annointed one is about to appear, the always entertaining...

4:45pm - ...Whedon. Aww, he's so cuddly.

5:45pm - Buffy Comic Season 9. Firefly comic. Angel Comic Season 6. Goners. Special Joss/Drew Goddard project that I won't name out of respect for him even though everyone else will. Ripper. Something new he's got on Myspace. The possibility of some Jossverse D2DVD stuff. Probably more I'm forgetting. The only thing missing is a new TV show. Pretty please, Joss, with impaled network executives on top. I never thought I'd say this to another man, but ... staff me.

6pm - We're on the exhibition floor, following a friend of ours to meet the artist he's been working with. Jul is of course looking away, I think calling someone on her cell. I look up to see wide-eyed Whedon-y goodness barreling toward me: Joss runs past us and I turn to Jul and say, very cleverly, "Joss Whedon just ran past us." After a stunned second, we both turn around to see Joss slam into a little boy. Ack! He stops briefly to make sure the kid's okay, then continues running.

6:30pm - Reach Irish pub for dinner. 15-30 minute wait.

7:30pm - After the wait staff gives away our table, we finally seat ourselves by pulling two smaller tables together.

8pm - Our order is taken. We're totally going to make it to the Buffy Sing-A-Long. Totally.

The rest of the night takes place after two or three beers, and thus will not be timed. Sort of.

9ish - We make it back to the convention center in time to wait for the second Buffy Sing-A-Long of the night, beginning at 11:30, and promptly call a few friends that have abandoned us to partying so that we can meet up with them and get drunk instead. I mean, we love Buffy, but Sing-A-Longs seem to be happening in LA now every few months. How often can you get drunk with a bunch of nerds? I think I just answered my own question.

While waiting for one of our friends to show up, we caught a few minutes of Masquerade. Most that I saw was pretty ho-hum, but I have to give props to two ... let's call them skits.

1. Beetlejuice - Black and white striped BJ suit, perfect makeup, rotating umbrella hat ... and 15 foot arms with giant hammers at the ends. Well done, sir. Well done.
2. Potter and Co - Absolutely brilliant. Someone finally answered the question we've all been asking for years: What would Grease look like if performed using the world of Harry Potter. Malfoy as Danny Zuko. "Greased Lighting" as the most hydromatic of broomsticks ever. Choreographed dances in wizard robes. I dare anyone who saw it to tell me it wasn't amazing.

After we met up with our friend, we headed over to his company's boat in the marina and basked in some comic industry gossip for a while, which was interesting, but since we were mostly just sitting there drained us to the point that we just wanted to go back to our hotels by the time we left.

Sunday was slow. Breakfast with friends, walking the exhibition floor and then home. And I didn't get to meet up with any blog friends (sad).

Thursday, July 26, 2007

502! 502!

Since the site my writing partner and I created to showcase our work has been down for a few weeks (*cough* laziness *cough*), I'm removing the link and including my email.

(Look to the right. No, no, your other right.)

Feel free to message me unless you're selling something. In that case, I've got the number of an annoying old roommate who'd love to hear from you.

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

All Your Writers' Assistant Job Are Belong To Us!

Schweet.

Now if Jul and I could just win one of the seemingly dozens of writing contests we entered. And get an agent. And get staffed. Today would rule if all of that happened.

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Random Thought of the Day

Anyone thinking about making a weed movie? I've got a great name for you: Waiting to Exhale. Come on, you know you want to.

Monday, July 23, 2007

On the Books: The Unfinished Story of An Emotional Journey

Recently applied for a writers' assistant position. Especially since it's still in process, but probably even afterward since I don't want to violate any company policies or piss anybody off, I can't tell you exactly what happened. In lieu of the details, join me for my emotional journey of the past week, followed by the few important facts I think I can tell.

Monday--nervous excitement followed by frantic questioning of my intelligence
Tuesday--acceptance and calm patience
Wednesday--slowly building frustration and anger
Thursday--resignation and a shifting of focus, then shock and confusion, quickly followed by absolute giddiness
Friday--nervousness, then relief, then more nervousness and impatience

The quick, important facts:
1. Submitted script
2. Writer/Directors liked script, want to meet
3. Delays

And as of this morning, the meeting is finally on the books for tomorrow (subject to availability and last minute schedule changes which I suppose really falls under availability).

But...successful professional writers like my work. Whatever happens, that's already a win.

No wonder everyone (and hopefully their mother unless their mother is really good) is writing one

Ugly Betty is an incredibly well-written show. Sure it's over-the-top and ridiculous and soap-opera-y, but that actually makes what they accomplish week after week that much more impressive.

Almost every single character on this show is not only a stereotype, but a cardboard cutout of a human being. Yet somehow, the writers have been able to discover real, human moments for even the most outrageously exaggerated characters--while still maintaining their over-the-top exaggeratedness. Even more important to me, the disparate strands of each episode so far have worked to explore a common theme. It's something that had me absolutely hooked on the first several episodes of Lost, and (despite my renewed love for Hurley and crew) something that I think the show sorely misses.

My writing partner and I recently downloaded (legally, of course) the entire first season of Betty and lovingly devoured it in a week. And even though the last few episodes let me down a little bit (a few characters suddenly seemed dumber and conflict/danger started to feel more based on chance and coincidence), I have enough confidence in the staff to highly recommend checking Betty out.

Thursday, July 19, 2007

It's an honor just to be ignored

It's official: I'm the millionth person to blog about the Emmy Nominations being released today. I'm told that my prize is in the mail, but I don't see how since I never gave anyone my address...weird.

This is the time of year I feel oddly ashamed as a wannabe TV writer, since it's inevitable that I won't have seen several of the nominated shows...or at least don't watch them regularly enough to agree or disagree with the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences voters that I so want to be a part of.

The shows I can't have an opinion on this year are:

For Comedy

Extras
Monk
30 Rock
Two and a Half Men
The New Adventures of Old Christine
How I Met Your Mother
My Name Is Earl


For Drama

Boston Legal
House
24
The Sopranos
Rescue Me
Brothers & Sisters
The Closer
Law & Order: SVU
Medium

*Note* I included all shows nominated in major (i.e. acting, writing, or best show) categories that I either have never watched or did not watch enough of this year to feel like I can accurately gauge said show. If only the actual voters had the same restriction...

For several of these I saw a handful of episodes, and there are a number that I used to watch but for whatever reason didn't this year...but sadly, there are quite a few that I've never seen at all. Bad writer! BAD! Ah well, I'll find more hours this fall somewhere.

And because it will be a cold day in hell when I don't offer an unsolicited opinion, what's with the absolutely unsurprisingly fact that Dexter only got nominations for editing, main title and theme? Really? I never expected it to get a (deserved) nomination for Best Drama, but not even an acting nod to Micheal C. Hall? Who's a serial killer gotta slice up to get a fair shot in this town?

Oh well, just enjoy the title sequence below since I'm too lazy to figure out how to include the video as part of this post.

Dexter: Morning Routine

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

And now, the agonizing


I heart my boss. I really do. I found out last Tuesday morning that a writer's assistant position would be opening up at the company where I work. Now, being a desperate wannabe writer, the idea had naturally crossed my mind to apply for the job before the person who gave me the gossip was done super-secretly telling me about it. But, since I'm also loyal, that was all it did--cross my mind.

Ten minutes later, the awesome recruiter who got me my current position called to ask what I knew about the writer's assistant job opening up and asked if I would be interested.

"Well, uh, yeah, definitely," I replied. Duh. Even though I would be an assistant on a feature and I'm gunning for TV, it's still a writer's assistant gig. Moreoever, I'd be assisting writing partners (hey, I have a partner!) whose main experience before this was a couple of sitcoms (hey, TV!).

So, since my boss was still on vacation, the recruiter said she'd email her and suggest me.

That afternoon, having not even seen the email from the recruiter, my boss called and proceeded to talk me into trying to leave her. (Did I mention I love her?) I "had to do it," "great opportunity," "networking," etc. Like she had to convince me.

Yesterday I got the final okay and had to submit my resume and a writing sample. Let me tell you how fun that was. The movie is an animated action comedy, and the writers are apparently really looking for comedic writers. Okay. Forget the fact that I have no feature samples. These are TV guys; hopefully they'll be okay with that. I've got two solid specs (NCIS and Gilmore Girls), a one-hour pilot for a dramatic comedy and what is essentially the first draft (more than a year old, mind you) of a My Name Is Earl spec.

Right off, I thought of submitting the pilot. It just made sense to me. Of all my writing samples, it's definitely the one that best shows my voice. It is a dramatic-comedy, but there's definitely quite a bit of comedy. Also, pretty much everyone who has read it has had really positive things to say about it and I think it's the best writing sample I've got. Decision made, right? Clearly you underestimate my ability to question myself.

After having one of the producers hammer it into my skull that the writers are really looking for comedy...and having another assistant describe the writers' sense of humor as SNL...my brain slowly turned to Earl.

There's a lot of wacky, almost cartoon style humor to Earl (apparently they even had a claymation episode), and I remembered my spec having some brilliant, hilarious moments (he said modestly). It just didn't quite work as a whole. Certain aspects of the story and characters needed fleshing out. But...those funny bits...

Long story long, I ultimately went with On Duty, the pilot, for exactly the reasons I came up with originally: it's my voice and my idea, it's the script everyone has liked the most so far, and for an hour-long show, it's pretty damn funny.

Now begins the waiting and the agonizing. I don't regret giving them On Duty. It's definitely the best work I've done so far. I do, however, have a copy of Earl printed out and waiting at my desk. Just, you know, in case.

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Depressing...?

Or am I just reading this wrong? It looks like there were maybe seven people hired for new and returning fall shows as "staff writers," the position pretty much all new writers move into when they get staffed on a TV show. Seriously? Out of the dozens of shows on the air, only seven *new* writers were hired? I must be missing something. Hopefully, I'm missing a whole lot of something, because otherwise this whole breaking into TV writing thing just got a lot more daunting.

Monday, July 9, 2007

Comic-Con For TV Junkies

The schedule for Comic-Con is finally available (thank you Ain't It Cool for the heads up) and my writing partner and I now have a real reason for making ourselves wake up in the wee hours of Saturday morning to make the trek down to San Diego: Bryan Fuller.

(Hi, Bryan! Missed you at the Buffy Sing-A-Long a few months back. Guess Jul and I were too busy learning about Ben Edlund and the joys of donut shops to notice you were there. And I'm pretending that I know you because I'm a moron. Moving on...)

To be more specific, we're excited about Pushing Daisies. If you haven't watched the trailer yet, please "get off your ass" and click on the link. And if you don't get that Wonderfalls reference, stop reading and go rent or buy it so you can spend 13 hours of snarky, possibly insane bliss with Jaye Tyler. But I digress...

Pushing Daisies is THE new TV series my writing partner and I are most excited about. It's created and written by Fuller, and the pilot is directed by Barry Sonnenfeld but feels like something by Tim Burton.

They're screening said pilot at Comic-Con at 9:15 am on Saturday. Awesome. Cruisin' down the 5 at 5am. Actually, it will probably be closer to 6, but "5 at 5" sounds better. Um, yeah.

Anyway, I picked out most of the TV panels that interest me Saturday and Sunday and will post them for your streamlined reading pleasure. Note that these do not represent ALL of the TV-related things at Comic-Con, they're just the ones that I'll probably try to get to.

SATURDAY

9:15-10:15 Special Early Screening: Pushing Daisies—Get to Comic-Con early to see this exclusive screening of one of the fall's most eagerly anticipated new shows! The stars and creators, including executive producer/creator Bryan Fuller (Heroes), of this new series—about an ordinary guy who can bring people back from the dead with the touch of his finger—come together to screen the Pushing Daisies pilot and answer fan questions. Produced by The Jinks/Cohen Company in association with Warner Bros. Television, Pushing Daisies will air Wednesdays at 8 PM ET/PT this fall on ABC. Room 6CDEF

10:00-11:15 Bionic Woman: Exclusive Pilot Screening and Q&A—Be one of the first to see this special version of the Bionic Woman pilot and participate in a Q&A panel session with series star and newcomer Michelle Ryan (EastEnders); executive producers David Eick (Battlestar Galactica), Glen Morgan (The X-Files), and Jason Smilovic (Lucky Number Slevin); co-stars Miguel Ferrer (Crossing Jordan) and Will Yun Lee (Witchblade); as well as a special guest appearance by Katee Sackhoff (Battlestar Galactica), who portrays Sarah Corvis, and more. When a devastating car accident leaves Jaime Sommers (Michelle Ryan) at death's door, her only hope for survival is a cutting-edge, top-secret technology that comes at a hefty price. With a whole new existence and a debt to repay, Jaime must figure out how to use her extraordinary abilities for good, while weighing the personal sacrifices she will have to make. It's Jaime's journey of self-discovery and inner strength that will help her embrace her new life as the Bionic Woman. Ballroom 20

11:30-12:30 TV Guide Hot List—The hippest and hottest names in supernatural/ fantasy/sci-fi television, as featured in TV Guide's current collector's issue, will offer sneak peeks at what's coming up on their shows as well as a look at the genre's future on the small screen. Panelists include (in alphabetical order) Ira S. Behr (The 4400), Billy Campbell (The 4400), Matt Dallas (Kyle XY), Tim Kring (Heroes), Masi Oka (Heroes), Michelle Ryan (Bionic Woman), and Skeet Ulrich (Jericho), among others to be announced. TV Guide's West Coast Bureau Chief Craig Tomashoff moderates. Ballroom 20

12:45-2:00 Heroes: Exclusive Volume II Clip and Q&A—Heroes chronicles the lives of ordinary people who discover they possess extraordinary abilities. Be the first to see an exclusive clip from Volume II and learn more about the DVD Heroes 360 and more. Participate in a Q&A session moderated by co-executive producer/comic book writer Jeph Loeb, with creator Tim Kring, comic book artist Tim Sale (Batman: The Long Halloween), and the entire cast—Jack Coleman ( H.R.G.), Noah Gray-Cabey (Micah Sanders), Greg Grunberg (Matt Parkman), Ali Larter (Niki Sanders), James Kyson Lee (Ando), Masi Oka (Hiro Nakamura), Hayden Panettiere (Claire Bennet), Adrian Pasdar (Nathan Petrelli), Zachary Quinto (Sylar), Sendhil Ramamurthy (Mohinder Suresh), Dania Ramirez (Maya), Milo Ventimiglia (Peter Petrelli), and more. Ballroom 20

2:15-3:15 Battlestar Galactica—Michelle Tauber of People Magazine calls it "an instantly addictive, girl-powered show that packs emotional punch, rip-roaring adventure and surprisingly sexy heat." Come see what all the buzz is about as SCI FI celebrates the ladies of Battlestar Galactica. Panelists include Mary McDonnell (Laura Roslin), Katee Sackhoff (Kara "Starbuck" Thrace), Tricia Helfer (Number Six), Ronald D. Moore (executive producer), David Eick (executive producer), and Erik Storey (VP, original programming, SCI FI). Moderated by Mark Bernardin of Entertainment Weekly magazine. Ballroom 20

3:30-4:30 Futurama—Matt Groening is proud to announce the long-awaited return of the animated sci-fi comedy classic Futurama! Matt and executive producer David X. Cohen will be on the dais, accompanied by writer Ken Keeler, animation directors Peter Avanzino and Dwayne Carey-Hill, and for the first time together on stage in any universe, actors Billy West (Fry), Katey Sagal (Leela), John DiMaggio (Bender), and Maurice LaMarche (Kif Kroker)! The cast and crew will entertain your questions and present a sneak peek at Bender's Big Score! in glorious wide-screen format! Moderated by Bill Morrison. Ballroom 20

4:45-5:45 Dark Horse Presents: Joss Whedon—With the hugely successful release of Buffy the Vampire Slayer Season 8 for Dark Horse Comics, Joss Whedon (Fray, Astonishing X-Men) talks about picking up where the TV series left off, his other projects, future plans, and possibly even a few surprises. A sneak peek from the upcoming Serenity—Collector's Edition DVD will be shown. Ballroom 20

5:15-6:30 The Sarah Connor Chronicles Screening and Q&A—Catch the first-ever fan screening of The Sarah Connor Chronicles, the television incarnation of the Terminator franchise, followed by a Q&A with stars Lena Headey (300), Thomas Dekker (Heroes), Summer Glau (Firefly), and Richard T. Jones (Event Horizon), along with executive producers Josh Friedman (War of the Worlds), David Nutter (The X-Files), and James Middleton (of C-2 Pictures, producers of the Terminator trilogy). Produced by C-2 Pictures in association with Warner Bros. Television, The Sarah Connor Chronicles will air Sundays at 9 PM ET/PT on FOX, starting midseason. Room 6CDEF

6:00-7:00 Spotlight on Mark Verheiden—The popular writer of movies (The Mask, Timecop), television (Smallville, Battlestar Galactica), and comics (Superman Batman, The American) comes to Comic-Con as a special guest. Mark Verheiden talks to writer and friend Jeff Gelb about his career storytelling on the big screen, the small screen, and the printed page. Room 2


6:00-7:00 The Pitching Hour —Jermaine Turner (director, original series, Disney/ABC Cable Networks Group), Jill Stewart (manager, original series, Disney Channel Animation), Dan Evans (network exec, Digimon), Jeremy Love (VP, Gettosake Entertainment), Laurenn McCubbin (producer, Showtime's Rent Girl), and Jonas Agin (senior VP, Tom Lynch Company) will take an idea from conception through production. This process will include creating a pitch document, obtaining agents, and getting a pitch meeting. The panelists will explain, through hypothetical example and humorous stories, the process that new creator should adapt to make their way into the Hollywood creative battleground. Knowing that each project is unique, there will be a Q&A to allow the audience to really hone in on the solutions to obstacles they may encounter. Also on hand will be IP lawyer Brendan McFeely to give creators insight on protecting their ideas as they navigate Hollywood! Room 5AB

9:00-11:30 Buffy the Vampire Slayer 10th Anniversary Screening—Celebrate the 10th anniversary of Buffy the Vampire Slayer with a screening of two Buffy episodes, including the musical episode, "Once More with Feeling," presented by Whedonopolis.com. There will be free keepsakes for attendees and a few other surprises! Stop by for some music, singing and "dancin' crazy." Room 5AB

SUNDAY

10:45-11:45 TV Guide: Super(Natural) Women—When it comes to supernatural, fantasy, and sci-fi shows these days, more women than ever are kicking ass and saving souls. Some of prime time's most fantastic females will tell all about how they've been able to make it in what has traditionally been a (super) man's world. Panelists include (in alphabetical order) Jenni Baird (The 4400), Allison DuBois (real life inspiration for Medium), Lisa Klink (Painkiller Jane), Lucy Lawless (Battlestar Galactica, Xena Warrior Princess), Marti Noxon (Private Practice, Buffy The Vampire Slayer); and several others. TV Guide's West Coast Bureau Chief Craig Tomashoff moderates. Room 6CDEF

Friday, July 6, 2007

I Kick Ass for the Lord!

Ever wonder if Noah could take Eve in a fight? Wonder no longer. Get ready to waste your day, courtesy of John Rogers and the lovely folks over at Adult Swim.

Thursday, July 5, 2007

Determinedly Deciding Dexter


So that's it. We've decided. Our next spec will be a Dexter, and I really hope we've got something with this idea. Also, I have new alliterative respect for Jeff Lindsay, and profusely apologize for "determinedly." YOU try to think of another "d" word that makes sense.

On two completely separate notes, Jill Golick has a nice breakdown of the pretty decent pilot of Burn Notice. She discusses what she's noticed about how to parse out the scenes for your A, B, and C plots (not to mention M and K) throughout the overall story. I'd explain further, but she does it much better than I could.

Note two is more of a question to myself...or others, I'm not picky. Recently I've been looking into the usefulness of taking a few UCLA Extension courses in TV writing. I'm wondering if anyone has ever taken one (or knows someone who has) and what their experiences were. I'd rather not drop several hundred dollars--not to mention valuable hours of my time--unless it's worthwhile.

Monday, July 2, 2007

Spec-ulation

Aren't I clever? Don't answer.

With applying to Disney out of the way, the time has come to get back to my real job: figuring out what to write next.

Since Battlestar is ending after next season, my writing partner and I are just writing off the weeks we spent planning and outlining our spec and moving on to something else. Unfortunately, we're not quite sure what yet. These are the problems that arise when several of your favorite shows end or get cancelled.

But...moving on, currently we're looking at three possibilities: Dexter, Heroes or Ugly Betty. All three have their positives and negatives, both for us personally and in the wide world, so today I'm going to entertain myself by looking at each show and making a list of pros and cons. Don't I sound like just the dork you'd like to get to know? Right.

Dexter

Pros:
We love it. Critics love it. The writing is dark, quirky and smart. It works as both an amazingly compelling character-based show and an inventive procedural. We have what I think is a very good idea for a spec Dexter.

Cons:
We don't have (or no how to attain) any Dexter scripts; moreover, we don't have ANY commercial-free cable scripts at all, so the format and structure is a bit of a mystery to us. It's a show with a very small audience, which MAY be potentially limiting in terms of getting people to read it.

Heroes

Pros:
We've seen every episode and managed through super-secret methods to attain scripts of the first 11 episodes. It's a pretty good show that has received a decent amount of critical acclaim and has the widest audience of our three selections. It's sci-fi/fantasy, and though it may be foolish, we've been looking to write a script in this genre to complement the procedural and comedic-drama specs we already have.

Cons:
Heroes is a tough nut to crack. We've tossed around a few ideas, but nothing has really stuck. With apologies, because there are lots of things I like about it, the scripts that I have read aren't exactly inspiring in their execution, which makes me feel like we might be writing down to the show a bit.

Ugly Betty

Pros:
Popular. Critically acclaimed. We really enjoyed the three episodes we watched on the screener disc and it seems like something we could write and have fun with. Right now we don't have any Betty scripts, but I can easily get a few via the glory that is The Scriptwriter's Network.

Cons:
We really enjoyed the three episodes we watched on the screener disc. Yup, that's right, kids, those three episodes are all we've seen. And while it's not very difficult to get the rest of the season (thank you iTunes), it would mean more of a time investment than the other two shows. Despite the fact that I THINK it wouldn't be hard to come up with a viable Betty, it's not like I have an idea plotted out or anything.

Hmmm...the life or death decisions of a hopeful TV writer.