Monday, January 02, 2006

Happy New Year!

The new year has been a happy one for me so far. Warning Films, the production company that hired me to write Harlem and the African American Jesus movie now called Color Of The Cross, called me early morning on New Year's Day. They asked me to write the book version of Color Of The Cross. Hoorah! It will be a novel based on the screen play I wrote a few months back. It will be controversial both because of the fact that Jesus will be dark skinned, and because of some interesting choices that I made in the screen play concerning Mary Magdalene, Judas, and Mary. I'm envisioning that it will take two or three months to write and there will be an early announcement about it here on my blog as well as where it can be obtained. It will be my first novel and I am very much looking forward to writing it.

I've completed my pilot for a TV series, The Outsiders, and turned it into ABC. My mentor, Adam Myman, a vice president of current programming at ABC was happy with what I had done with it and now it is with Carmen J. Smith, the head of new talent development to decide what will happen with it now. I'll find out more when she comes back from vacation at the end of the week.

In the meantime, they asked me to come up with three pitches for the NBC comedy, My name is Earl. I developed three that I'm pretty happy with and I'll pitch them to Carmen and Adam. Whichever one they choose I'll write into a comedy spec.

As a writer in search of a staff writing job on a television series, one needs a portfolio of several types of scripts. I have a police drama (Without A Trace) referred to as a procedural, a TV pilot (The Outsiders), and with My Name Is Earl, I'll have a comedy. The three scripts span the three networks ABC, NBC, and CBS.

I'm putting all this information here both for my own reference in the future and for people to see what writers have to go through to get a job on television. (I know what your thinking ... if TV writers have to go through all this, why is there such crap on television?) My answer is, there really isn't a lot of crap on television anymore. There used to be. But now, there are shows that can be enjoyed by almost any demographic group. The networks are too smart put crap on television, they can't make money that when. If you think a particular show is stupid or below your level of intelligence it probably is. But it's perfect for somebody else.

For example, I particularly like cutting edge shows like South Park, and Drawn Together that push the envelope on good taste and occasionally go beyond. A lot of people hate those kind of shows and prefer crime solving kind of shows like CSI. So to those people who say there isn't anything but crap on television, I say take another look, there's a lot more channels than there used to be and I can almost guarantee you will find something that you'll tune and time after time to watch.

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