Tuesday, November 29, 2005


My brain's going a million miles a minute tonight. Can't seem to slow down and get myself to bed.

I'm sitting at this crossroads trying to figure out what to do next. I suppose the wise course is to wait until Dec. 5 when I'll know if I've made the cut to the final round of the Writer's Arc fellowship. But, my brain is spinning with all these ideas, things to do...but I can't focus on one...I keep flitting around from idea to idea, like one neuron firing right after another, never stopping long enough to really work through a story.

Look, over here's the graphic novel idea you have...

...and over here a comic series (both to be turned into features someday)...

...but wait, what about that half finished comedy you have lying around...

...nope, work on the horror spec...

...or the dramedy...

...or the new TV spec...

...or rewrite the other one you have...

...or the pilot, you must work on the pilot...

...or the [blank]...

Nope, just swirling around in the eddy of imagination, spiriling down into the pool of paralysis.

Okay, now I can go to sleep. Maybe. I'll do a crossword puzzle.

Reunion and Hot Properties join the Graveyard

Here I am, your harbinger of cancelled shows...ABC and Fox finally pulled the plug on "Hot Properties" and "Reunion" respectively. They are cancelled, not renewed, no back nine pickup, ex-parrots.

Read for yourself at Hollywood Reporter.

Watch List updated and bumped. Aren't too many shows left for the fall season. I'll be adding the mid-seasons to the list before too long...

Monday, November 28, 2005

The trouble with NBC

TVWeek has a great article on the woes of the Peacock Network (the article may be subscription only, but subscription to the site is free).

Here are some things we learn from the article about the current state of affairs at NBC:

  • NBC ordered six new episodes of "Three Wishes" and then cancelled the order days later when CBS moved "Close to Home" into the Tuesday 9PM timeslot. (yes, I need to update the Watch List with this info). "Three Wishes" isn't yet cancelled, but there is some confusion as to the state of the show.
  • NBC's 10PM shows (which provide the lead-in to local affiliates' news programs) ratings are down 35% in the 25-54 Demo this year. Bad news for the affiliates.

Mediaweek reports today about the midseason schedules of the nets, and in particular the problems Fox is causing for everyone else. Fox is debating moving "American Idol" to Wednesday/Thursday from its current schedule of Tuesday/Wednesday. If the results show is moved to Thursday, it would definitely cause problems for CBS. NBC is mulling over moving "My Name is Earl" to Thursday nights, where it would be killed by the Idol juggernaut. So, until Fox makes a final decision on where Idol lands, NBC waits them out to decide how to program the rest of the season.

Poor NBC, can't catch a break.

Sunday, November 27, 2005

Blogroll adds for November

It's nearing the end of the month, so I've got some backlogged adds to make to the blogroll...

Lots to choose from. You people keep making blogs! Of course, the rules around here are you get linked a) if you link to me first (I'm all about sharing the love) or b) I've been reading you regularly for at least 2 weeks or c) you e-mail me and ask to be added.

In all cases the same rule applies: Post or you're toast! I've been kind to some folks, but those of you who insist on letting your blogs stagnate will find yourself off the SITW blogroll if you neglect entertaining me for more than 30 days (exceptions are made for those who at least warn people of an absence).

Okay, with the rules out of the way, let's see who we have this month:

Want to learn about running marathons and someone's efforts at becoming a writer? Read Chad Darnell's Untitled Project.

Tim Clague in the U.K. writes and has been nominated for a BAFTA. That's a real award, people!

Julie O. is my friend. She is very cool and I've met her! It's true! A blogger I have met that doesn't live in Los Angeles...oh and she writes like a woman on fi-yah.

I'm a big supporter of Dave's shirt, so I guess that makes me a supporter of Dave's blog.

I'm a nearly daily visitor to Silly Pipe Dreams and to The Big Woo. Good blogs, funny people.

People I met at the Screenwriting Expo Blogger meet up but for some reason didn't link to their blogs before: Ras and Writergurl.

Two Scribosphere favorites I have not meant to leave off the list but have been unintentionally neglected: Velociraptors on the Space Shuttle and Julie Goes to Hollywood (things they don't tell you in film school).

Finally, because they link to me: Dave Grubber, Hollywood Fun Camp, Matt Courtney, Danny Stack (in the UK), John Cairns (another Canuck), Write Brother and Brett in Texas.

Okay, that's a lot of adds for this month. Hopefully that takes care of most of my backlog. If I've left you off the addlist, e-mail me and let me know so I can get you on next month.

Follow the rules kids! Blogs are serious commitments, not frivilous ways to procrastinate...oh, wait.

Friday, November 25, 2005

Goin' home to Los Angeles

Boarding my plane in a few minutes. Looking forward to getting back home.

Warren, go ahead and spec 'Entourage'. May not help too much with getting a drama job, but I hear the comedy writers are speccing it because they don't have much to choose from.

And who knows, maybe there are some drama shows reading 'Entourage...'?

Wednesday, November 23, 2005

Alias and Threshold get their walking papers.

Found the story on Yahoo! News...Alias will end its 5 year run in May. The last line of the article mentions that CBS is pulling the plug on Threshold, so it is cancelled, axed, ceased to be, and any other search term you folks are plugging in to find the news.

Watch List will be updated with the latest victim.

Tuesday, November 22, 2005

Screenwriter connection

** Bumping to top while I'm on vacation. I'll try to post while I'm away, but hey, use the next week to meet new people!

I get a lot of visitors. Not John August levels or Artful Writer hits, but I get my fair share.

So, I want to help my visitors.

I also notice a lot of people from the same areas of the country cruising through. It occurred to me that many of you may be virtual neighbors and may not even know it.

I hearby start the SITW Screenwriter "Groupmatching" Project.

Here's how it works:

Post a comment below with your region of the country. You do not need to post your e-mail address, but if you want to, feel free. Consider this a bulletin board where you can possibly find others who are working in your genre, medium (TV or Feature), or live in your area that may be interested in swapping scripts. Here's an example for me, if I were going to comment on my post:

My name is Shawna and I'm located in Los Angeles. I am primarily focused on writing TV specs, but I also have several feature projects in various stages of development (well, my mental development) and I am working on a TV pilot idea. I'd be interested in meeting other writers, need not be located in Los Angeles, who share my interests. Will read specs and provide minimal notes.

Now, you might have a specific interest or maybe you are trying to get a writer's group going in Pittsburgh (hey, why not?) Let people know below! If I get a lot of comments on this post, I'll keep it bumped to top (right near the Watch List) to aid people in finding other writers to collaborate with, trade scripts for notes or just talk to.

It's an experiment. Let's see where it goes. Who's first? Don't be shy, now's your chance to put some of that networking advice I've given you to good use!

Monday, November 21, 2005

Close to Home gets full season, Threshold waits decision

So, Threshold might have to get bumped to the 'on the fence' category if CBS keeps putting off the decsion to order a full season. Meanwhile, Close to Home benefited from Threshold's former time slot on Friday night and was able to improve the ratings after The Ghost Whisperer. So, Watch List will be updated...

Hollywood Reporter has the story.

Friday, November 18, 2005


So, my spec is done for the Writer's Arc Fellowship Round Two. Here's hoping...

So, now what, you ask? Well, I'm polishing my rewrite of my 'House' spec (which, those of you who offered to read it, I'll be sending it to you soon). Next up is a rewrite of my 'Lost' spec, and I'll be starting a new TV spec, probably of a cop procedural. Not tellin' which one yet...

As far as features go, I'm going to continue working on my outline for Sleeper Cell (yes, I know Showtime has a show on soon with that title...I'm keepin' my title for now). I also have a side project with a co-writer, which should be fun.

If I should make it to the Final round of the Writer's Arc, I need 5 ideas to pitch. I think I have 3 solid ones now, and I'll be working on 2 more...just in case, you know...

So, I'm booked up for awhile. I'll be out of town next week, but I'll try to keep the blog current. I have a couple of articles I'm cookin' up and hope to finish so I can throw them out any time I'm away and still have some current content.

Tuesday, November 15, 2005

Expo 4 Pictures

Warren has more pics at his site, but here were the ones taken with my camera...

What? Who's this? Why, it's Nathan Fillion, my future boyfriend. (Matt Damon isn't returning my calls since he got engaged.) This man is so damn handsome. And I got his autograph.

No one was around to snap a picture of me, so I did it myself. Hey, I promised Dave Olden photographic evidence that I wore his shirt at the Expo. I got a lot of compliments on it and one prominent vendor even asked if Dave would like to sell his t-shirts in their store.

The Scribosphere meetup. It's okay to be jealous, but next time, join us!

Prison Break Accountant found Dead

UPDATE: The guy who died was not a producer, as previously reported, but rather the accountant for the show (IMDB credits support that, even though Prison Break wasn't listed in his credits).

(Hat Tip: Defamer)

Matthew Houbrick was found dead in his Chicago hotel room yesterday, apparently of a drug overdose.

Abandon Hope All Ye Who Enter...

So I'm working on my rewrite to submit my script for Round 2 of the Writer's Arc Fellowship.

If you are in any way connected with this fellowship, please stop reading now.

Okay, now that they're gone, let me tell you, this script is a MESS. I wrote it when I barely knew what I was doing. Dialogue is clunky. Narratives aren't vivid enough, my protagonist lacks clear definition as a character, some beats no longer play right in my head...

I can't do this in 4 days. Can. not. This makes me sad. I want it to be this other thing, and I can't make it that thing, not for this.

I'm hoping I can get it to a better state, but it is no where near good. I guess if there's a happy note in this, it's that I know what to do to make it good, I just lack the time.

This sucks.

Monday, November 14, 2005

Night Stalker Cancelled, E-Ring given full season

So, another one bites the dust. Hollywood Reporter gives the (scant).

People's Choice Awards are stupid.

I just looked at my options for voting in the People's Choice Awards. Just when you think the Emmys or the Oscars get it wrong, you see what comprises this year's nominees for the PCAs and realize, maybe we're too hard on the academies. Take a look:

Favorite New Comedy

  • Everybody Hates Chris
  • How I Met Your Mother
  • My Name is Earl
Favorite New Drama
  • Commander in Chief
  • Criminal Minds
  • Prison Break
Favorite TV Comedy
  • Everybody Loves Raymond
  • That 70's Show
  • The Simpsons
Favorite TV Drama
  • CSI: Crime Scene Investigation
  • Desperate Housewives
  • Law & Order: SVU
Okay, I don't disagree with the first category. I mean, at least they didn't try to sell Freddie as a favorite new comedy. I don't even take much issue with the favorite new drama list. But these Favorite existing show lists are absurd. At least the PCA overlords figured out Desperate Housewives belongs in drama, but SVU? Lost has better ratings than SVU! And I think you can make a case that people love Grey's Anatomy. So this three options in a category thing is really too limiting. Apparently we are all too stupid to pick from more than 3 things.

I'm cranky. I need a nap.

It's a good thing?

Martha's Apprentice is no more. After the finale, it will not return for another series.

Watch List will be updated in the morning...

Friday, November 11, 2005

Headin' down to the expo

Hope to see some of you there...If you see me (I'll be the writer wearing a black turtleneck...that should narrow it down SOME), please stop and say hi. I'd love to meet some of my readers (and I know there is more than 3 of you out there -- unless someone is jetting all over the world to read my blog from several locations a day).

Tomorrow I'll be wearing Dave Olden's Screenwriter Shirt. But probably a sweater too.

I have no idea what I'll be wearing Sunday, but you can find out if you attend Warren's and Fun Joel's Post-Expo Screenwriter Meet-up.

Thursday, November 10, 2005

TV news dump

So, lots to report, all from a single Hollywood Reporter article.

Arrested Development: cancelled (as expected, will only air 13 episodes, not 22)
Kitchen Confidential: cancelled (again, expected. Did not get back nine)
7th Heaven: cancelled (will end in May)

Freddie: back nine pickup

I know, the obvious question is, in what universe do we live where Arrested Development gets cancelled and Freddie gets picked up?

It's a cruel cruel world...

Tuesday, November 08, 2005

WB wants more Related and Twins

Neither one has been given a traditional 'back nine' pickup, and WB is saying they are cutting costs by not ordering full seasons, but Related gets 6 more tries to find an audience and Twins gets 5. Story in Hollywood Reporter.

Monday, November 07, 2005

Writer's Arc Fellowship

Sent e-mails to those making it to Round Two today.

I'm in.

Problem is, my script is...well, it needs a lot of work.

Ten days. Page one rewrite. Bring it on.

Close to Home and Threshold swap time slots / Love, Inc picked up

Variety has the story (subscription required). I'll link to a free article, which I'm sure will become available on Monday. ** Update 11/7 Zap2it has the details on the time period swap.

Watch List will be updated with the Love, Inc. info.

Thursday, November 03, 2005

Out of Practice gets its pickup

CBS gave Out of Practice it's full season order.

Watch List will be updated and bumped to top.

Killer Instinct lives!

Defying all predictions to the contrary, Fox has ordered more episodes of Killer Instinct. It hasn't been officially renewed, so the Watch List stands pat...for now.

Wednesday, November 02, 2005

ABC finds new ways to exploit hit TV show 'Lost'

Found this story on Yahoo! News...basically, ABC is teaming with corporate sibling Hyperion to produce a book which will be featured on the show and then be written and sold in bookstores. A "mystery writer" has been tapped to pen the novel entitled "Bad Twin".

I'm thinking they can do this with all of their shows! Genius! Now, who did they get to write the book?

NBC Universal launches Sleuth

The TV news keeps rolling in today!

TVWeek reports that NBC Universal will launch a new network next year dedicated to mysteries, crime stories and reality programming called "Sleuth". It will be available in 5 million households to start.

Three Wishes and The Office not dead yet

Buried in a story about the pope biopic going to ABC, Variety reports that NBC has ordered 6 more episodes of Three Wishes and three more of The Office.

Sci-fi Channel has ordered another season of Battlestar Galactica for next year, which will be season 3.

Strong Medicine was cancelled last week, but the box set of season one can be yours soon!

Will & Grace is still cancelled. So NBC is holding fast.

CBS tries to boost "Threshold"

TV Week reports that CBS.com will begin streaming previously aired episodes of Threshold in an attempt to lure new viewers to the show.

Don't know if it will work, but it is nice to see them supporting their show and trying to build a stronger audience for it.

Over There gets axed

Story in the Hollywood Reporter this morning. So, no specs for 'Over There' on FX...