Notions of Battlestar Galactica

Fantastic article/interview today (Hat tip: Dead Things on Sticks ) in the Chicago Tribune today by Maureen Ryan.  If you want to know how Ron Moore thinks, how this episode came to be, how the writers constructed it, what the heck the title of the episode means and what foxes being carried out to sea is all about, you MUST read this article.

But only after you see Episode 13, which aired Friday night.  The article is spoilerific if you haven’t seen the episode yet.

But man is it meaty…the article and the episode.

Posted under analysis, writing

This post was written by Shawna on January 17, 2009

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Did you hear Geekerati last night?

Geekerati Radio, now on Wednesday nights at 7 Pacific / 10 Eastern.

No, I wasn’t on it due to a scheduling conflict, but it was certainly one of the best shows that our crew of Bill, Christian and Eric have done.

Take a listen…it started a little late, but they finished strong. Interview with writer Eric Nylund.

Posted under blogs, writing

This post was written by Shawna on January 15, 2009

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PaleyFest announces two panels for 09

Just got the email, and it looks like there will be panels for TRUE BLOOD and FRINGE this year.

The Paley Center members can purchase tickets starting February 26.  Tickets go on sale to the public on March 1st.

The festival will be at the Arclight CineramaDome again (yay!) from April 10 – 23rd, 2009.

If anyone at PaleyFest is reading, I’d really like a FLIGHT OF THE CONCHORDS panel.  I expect to see a LIFE ON MARS or MENTALIST panel (or both).  I’d really like to see LEVERAGE and BURN NOTICE panels too, if you’d be so kind.

Posted under tv news

This post was written by Shawna on January 14, 2009

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“Amnesia” Poster Design Contest

I know, not my usual type of post, but saw this on Twitter and had to share.  JB Movies and Visual Arts LLC are holding a contest to design the poster for their film “Amnesia”.  I’ll let them explain it:

JB Movies and Visual Arts LLC Poster Contest

JB Movies and Visual Arts LLC Poster Contest

Posted under blogs

This post was written by Shawna on January 14, 2009

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Who watches the Watch List?

It started out as a way for me to keep track of what shows were canceled, renewed, on the bubble, etc. and has morphed into a monster of its own. It has its own page now and is updated almost every day (though you may not notice all of the date changes that happen).

The Watch List.

Also, I realized recently that those “Popular Posts” in the sidebar are determined by number of comments. Someday (let’s hope) the 2005-06 Watch List will vanish from that list. But of course, that’s up to you. 🙂

Anyway, lots of pilot news coming. And what I really wanted to tell you is that apart from the articles I see (which are reflected in my Friendfeed) I’m going to start building a page to track the pilot news. In the meantime, I highly recommend James Hibbard’s The Live Feed which is a great resource for TV news.

Posted under tv news, watch list

This post was written by Shawna on January 8, 2009

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You know the rules. Post or you’re toast.

I know, it goes for me too.

Time to clean out the blogrolls once more. If you are a ‘legacy’ blog (as in, a pro or someone who has valuable insights to be saved for the ages), you are exempt. The rest of you — I’m creating a four month cut off. If you haven’t posted anything on your blog since September 1, 2008, you are coming off the blogroll (exceptions can be made for those on pre-announced ‘hiatus’). If you have a newer URL (or I just have it plain wrong), let me know that too so I can correct it.

So, get crackin’. Or you are outta here.

And if you are a blogger who would like me to be aware of their existence in the universe, please leave a comment with link to your blog. I’ll try to add new ones as I remove the old.

Posted under blogs

This post was written by Shawna on January 5, 2009

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So what’s it like in L.A. right now?

I flew back to L.A. in thick fog.  Couldn’t see the ground until the wheels hit the runway.  The pilot had a sense of humor about it too; he came on the intercom right after touch down with a declaration of “ohhhh yeahhhhh” and we, the passengers laughed nervously, relieved that we were in capable hands.

While I was home I got the question a lot — “What’s going on out there?  What’s it like in L.A. right now?”  At no time could I really provide a good answer.  It has eluded me for the past two months as things in the industry continue to morph and change.

It is really dang foggy.

No one knows where the tipping point for web content and the convergence of your PC and your TV really is.  One theory is that the bad economy will speed up the transition for people, as they shift away from going to the theater and toward lower cost entertainment.  Another theory posits the opposite — that the bad economy drives people to the theater to escape their woes, and so the “tipping point” will be pushed further out.  As is usually the case in this town, nobody knows anything.

The TV industry seems to have been thrown into mass confusion.  While there are more opportunities on cable networks, they keep their costs low by ordering fewer episodes and keeping their staffs small.  That means fewer jobs than on network shows.  And we’ve seen what the networks (well, okay, so far just NBC) will do in this environment — cut off an arm.  Four hours of scripted tv (at least) will be gone once Leno takes over 10 PM.  That’s one staff of what, 10, 12 writers compared to four staffs of 8 or 10 writers.  That’s quite a trade off and a hit to jobs for us.

So how do you survive as a writer in this environment?

I suppose the easy answer is, you WRITE.  I know, you want to sell, you want to get staffed, you want to pound the pavement…but let me tell ya, it is rough out there.  Rougher than I’ve seen in the last 6 years I’ve been here.  Not to say you can’t sell a script or get an assignment, but there are fewer opportunities out there.  The conversation I had with a friend yesterday resonated with me in ways I hadn’t expected.  He is quite determined to make a go of it with web content, and I wish him Godspeed.  I of course, stand ready to work with him eagerly on any project he dreams up, but when he asked me if I’d be focusing more on creating content for the internet, I hesitated.

It’s another path to procrastination for me.  If I shift any of my energy toward chasing that rainbow, I will fall off the wagon with the projects I have in mind to complete this year.  I’ll have an excuse not to finish them (I’m working on THIS now, it’s more pressing, more urgent).  No, I must stay the course, as tempting as it is to deviate from it.

And what is that course?  Write.  Produce more material.  Have things to be read.  Because when I’m ready to get “out there” I need an arsenal of quality material.  This year is all about building that arsenal.

The strong will survive the uncertainty.  To be strong, you must “exercise”.  That exercise is writing.

Let the foolish chase rainbows.  Some may even get lucky and catch one or two.  But the rest of us are in this for the long haul, and I will not take a short term gain over a long term career.  Not gonna happen.

It’s foggy out there.  No one knows when the fog will lift.  Have faith in yourself that you’ll touch down without seeing the ground.

But for god sake, don’t try to land the plane unless you’ve got the skills.

Posted under analysis, writing

This post was written by Shawna on January 4, 2009

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What are you doing here?

I need some feedback, people.  Apart from the five or six of you I know (and you know who you are…I think), I’d like to know what the rest of you are doing here.  Did you get here by accident?  Do you know me?  Are you too a struggling wannabe?

And what I can impart that will keep you around and talking to me?  Yeah, I realize that sentence sounds a little pathetic…wasn’t intended that way.  I just want more of a dialog with those who pass through, and I’m wondering what I can say or do to get you talking.

So, drop a note here, even just to say hi.  And let me know what I’m doing right and doing wrong (well, nicely, please).

Posted under blogs

This post was written by Shawna on January 3, 2009

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Following the Stream and other random things

I’ll talk about TV stuff in a minute.

I just assume you are all reading the same blogs I’m reading.  Clearly that is not the case.  I direct your attention once more to my Friendfeed in the left hand sidebar (for those of you reading through RSS, check the link).  I very often share breaking news and interesting stories I find in blogs, many pertaining to film and tv.  I read about 300 blogs through Google Reader, so at any given time of the day I’ll share a story I read on my friendfeed.  Could be writing related, tv show related, film related…or a cat picture.  You just never know.  But, I try to share things I really do find to be of some interest, and not just blah blah random stuff.

Which is, you know, basically what this blog is…blah, blah random stuff.  Oh, but that reminds me…

Attention scribosphere people who care: I am planning another one of my bursting at the seams parties (last seen 2 years ago…sorry for the delay).  I will be sending the invites through Facebook and through my email list.  If you want on it, add me on Facebook or email me at shouting2wind at earthlink dot net and I shall put you on the LIST.  I expect to have quite a large gathering, and so that means it’ll be moving out of my condo to a larger venue.  Tentatively planning on mid-February.

Okay, that’s out of the way, let’s talk TV.  TV people are happily anticipating the next few weeks when we see the return of LOST, the return of 24 (man, I hope it’s good), the return of BATTLESTAR GALACTICA, the premiere of DOLLHOUSE and true nerds (like me) are also even a little geeked up for CASTLE (It’s Nathan Fillion, for godsake!)  Midseason never looked so good.

We will miss PUSHING DAISIES.  But where a door closes, a huge picture window opens.  Bryan Fuller has gone back to HEROES to save that show from itself!  So, where we lose, we also gain.  I might even be able to start watching HEROES again.  Miracles do occur.  FLIGHT OF THE CONCHORDS returns!  This makes me very happy.  I’m looking forward to the Tim Roth vehicle LIE TO ME, where a writing duo I know are on staff.  Yes, I am still woefully behind on some shows.  Trying to catch up as quickly as possible.  Thankfully, I got a DVD recorder so I can start burning stuff off my DVR and on to DVD for future viewing on the go (yes, I recognize I should just dowload stuff…shut up.  Someone’s always gotta be the technosnob.)

And, yes, I’ll get the Watch List updated this week.  You people are so pushy!

Oh, Happy New Year.  Get back to work.

Posted under writing

This post was written by Shawna on January 3, 2009

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