Saturday, August 28, 2010

Writing a Spec Pilot

About two weeks ago, my brother asked me whether I had any ideas for action shows. At the time, I didn't - but I said I would give it some thought.

Low and behold, an idea popped into my head last weekend. With some brainstorming help from my writing partner, I developed an outline for the show.

All well and good -- except that the pilot episode has decided that it wants to be written....right now. No, seriously...right now. If I could take a week off work to write it, it might've been done by now.

Kind of funny since the concept doesn't actually fit my brother's need (episodic action/adventure).

But hey -- I've never actually written a television show episode before (despite making a number of pitches), so why not? It'll be a nice challenge -- and kind of fun.

So yes -- my next project will be the pilot for a television series. Technically, it's my current project, since I've already started it. Today, I developed the episode template, outlined the scenes, and wrote the first scene (i.e., the teaser).

I think "fast and furious" is going to be the way with this script. Barring any unforeseen circumstances -- I will have all three days of the Labour Day weekend to write it. I have a good feeling I'll have a first draft done by the end of it.

We'll see. Note that I'd still need to make the script good after that. ::laugh::

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Why does this happen to me?

Well, the television saga continues...or wait, maybe this is the start of a new chapter.

Last weekend I went on a writing retreat. I wasn't expecting much because I've been a bit at a loss as to what to work on next. The book is finished and out making the rounds. Nothing at all exciting there. I've gotten some rejections from agents -- but not worried quite yet.

I need to do some good research before I start my next individual book (currently slated to be a Napoleonic sea adventure novel, with magic). Karina is still working on edits to her book, so Empath & Echo isn't in a rush to be written.

In truth, the writing retreat was well on its way to being a vacation (complete with lots of sleep), with no writing at all.

Enter an action adventure television series. Yes, last week my brother mentioned that a certain broadcaster was looking for an action series. I thought -- oh Action! I like Action! But I didn't want spies. Or cops. ...

So one morning of the writing retreat, my fellow writers were talking about getting tattoos (Hell no.) -- when I thought: Tattoos. Tattoos are cool. They are used a lot for secret societies in books and stuff. Wait! Secret societies! What about a show with secret societies? And so, the new concept was born. Unfortunately, I can't give you the plot -- or even the title, because too much would be given away.

Of course, I didn't have just a pitch idea drop in my lap...I had the whole first two seasons show up. With a bit of help from my writing partner, I pretty much have a fleshed out series...complete with an awesome opening scene for the pilot, and a very last scene for the first season. I do love having a friend to brainstorm with. She's awesome.

But still - I wasn't planning on writing a script. I was planning to write a mini-pitch, send it off to my brother, then worry about expanding the pitch later.

But this idea refused to settle for just being a pitch. It's pretty much hijacked my creativity and is demanding to be written. And not just "next". It wants to be done NOW. So, I've booked Labour Day weekend to writing a Pilot Episode. I have no idea how it will turn out, but it should be fun. At the very least, it will be good experience. This will be my first actual episode script. Fortunately, I've read a few great pilots -- including the one for 24. I imagine getting the draft down won't be will be making the draft good.

And here I thought it would be awhile before I found my next project. Famous Last Words.