Friday Fun – Learning to Love Writing

Who would have thought you’d learn one of the most important lessons of writing from a 6-year-old boy and his imaginary tiger friend? Writing is an art and a business. The balance is tough, but once you understand the balance there’s no question that you’ll enjoy every moment of what you do.

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Quote of the Day – Shonda Rhimes

Image result for shonda rhimes 2017

“You want to be a writer? A writer is someone who writes every day, so start writing. You don’t have a job? Get one. Any job. Don’t sit at home waiting for the magical opportunity. Who are you? Prince William? No. Get a job. Go to work. Do something until you can do something else.”

Shonda Rhimes is the lovely lady who brought you popular shows like, “Grey’s Anatomy,” “Scandal,” and Private Practice.” She’s got some solid advice here. You have to start somewhere. Getting started can be the hardest part, but that’s no excuse. Find your way in. After all, it may be in a place you wouldn’t expect.

In-Depth Interview – David Mandel

The scene after 'Veep' won its third consecutive Best Comedy Series award at the 2017 Emmys

David Mandel, and “Veep,” have been on a roll ever since the series premiere. Critics love it. The show is well written, and has an all-star cast as well. If you’d like to see the list of nominations and winners, you can find them here: Emmy Winners 2017. I love the idea that this show is it’s own world of politics, and it doesn’t reflect the current state of our world in any way. This is something David Mandel strives for. It would be very easy to make a Trump character, or jokes about the current state of politics, but that’s not what this show is about. It’s about the character, Selina, and how she handles her Vice Presidency.

Unfortunately, I’m not a part of their audience. I tried to watch two seasons of the show, and I found it to be incredibly depressing. I understand that this type of humor just isn’t for me, and is better suited for other types of people. That being said, it’s nice to see this show doing well.

A few questions from the interview:

“Are there particular places you look to for inspiration when you’re thinking about how to consider those ideas as comedy?”

“Do you read the pieces written about Veep, and do you respond to that audience analysis of the show? Or do you try to keep the show contained to your own creativity and your own desires for it?”

And, here’s the full interview: The Atlantic – Veep’s Showrunner on Clinton, Trump, and Insulting Jonah

Quote of the Day – Arthur C. Clarke

This one is for all the sci-fi writers out there. I’m reading an amazing book, called “The Singularity Is Near,” by Ray Kurzweil. I’d recommend it to anybody if you want to understand the way the world is changing, and how technology and science could shape the world in the next 30 years and beyond. This quote popped up in one of the final chapters, and it resonated with me. I hope it makes you think about the amazing and wonderful possibilities that lie ahead in the times to come. Maybe it’ll get your mind running. On that note use that mind of yours, because maybe you’ll be the one to inspire people to make the impossible become possible.

In-Depth Interview – Gordon Smith

I should probably start off by saying I used to work on “Better Call Saul,” and was fortunate enough to get to know Gordon, and the rest of the writers, a little bit while working on Season 2. He’s a great guy, and I want to congratulate him on his second Emmy nomination. Way to go man! If you’re interested in seeing the other nominees you can find them here: Emmy Winners 2017

I’m going to keep my personal experiences from working on the show out of this post, as this post is about Gordon and what it’s like writing for “Better Call Saul.” Fun fact for you all, he started out as a P.A. on season 3 of “Breaking Bad” and worked his way up into the Writer’s Room on “Better Call Saul.” If you’re a young writer, this is a great way to get into the Writer’s Room.

I’m not including quotes from the interview, because there are spoilers in this interview if you haven’t seen this far into the show.  ***This is a spoiler heavy interview*** That being said, it gives some great insights on how the writers of this show approach writing out a single episode, and how that fits into the season.

Here’s the link: The Ringer: Gordon Smith Breaks Down His Emmy-Nominated Episode of ‘Better Call Saul’

Friday Fun – Writing the Right Way

Honestly, I don’t think there’s a right way to write. Typically, I’m the guy who will plan and plan until my story is ready to explode out of me. There’s only so much planning you can do, and then you’re just procrastinating. That being said, some of my best ideas have come during brainstorming, or when I was writing without an objective in mind… or in the shower. You just never know what will work best. I think both are crucial skills to being a good writer. Some of the greatest stories were planned painstakingly, and although you may not realize it some of the best stories out there weren’t planned very well at all. Here’s a hard rule for all of you out there. Just write!

QOTD – Joss Whedon

QOTD Joss Whedon

Now that Halloween is over, and all the scary things have gone to bed, it’s time to laugh a little. Am I right? I’m definitely a subscriber of Whedon’s advice here, and think it connects to life as well as writing. It’s healthy in the dark times to give the audience a laugh, or a breather. Also, when it comes to life it’s the same! If you’ve been grinding away, and can’t seem to get any further with your work, maybe it’s time to take a quick break. Take an hour or a night off just for you. Even planning this out may be a good idea, because it can be a reward for all the hard work you’ve been doing. Something you can look forward to.