aprilhenry (aprilhenry) wrote,

What it's like to write a TV show - specifically, 24

I've always been fascinated by what it might be like to work as a writer for a TV show. [Full disclosure: I'm even Facebook "friends" with one of the writers for Breaking Bad.]

The NY Times had an article about a novelist who was invited to be part of the team of writers for 24. Part of it reads:
We spitball possible plots. When the process is going well, it is like playing soccer with an invisible ball. One writer pushes an idea forward until another steps in. Someone says, “So the terrorists seize a school bus filled with rich kids. ...” “except one kid hides a cellphone. ...”

And away we go.

But all too soon someone finds a hole in the plot, or argues that it doesn’t give Jack enough to do, or that it’s too maudlin. We backtrack. Sometimes we succeed in addressing the complaint. Sometimes, after a few minutes of arguing, we fail. Howard steers us in a new direction. But the original argument will flare up a few minutes later, like a fire in a garbage dump.

I think it would be so great to spitball plots with a group of writers. Especially when you write mysteries and your always looking for that plausible, yet shocking twist. Or ideally, a dozen of them.

Read more about the writer's experience writing for 24 here.

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