019/020 – Social Media & The Writer Round Table – Part 1 & 2

To tackle the immense, cutting edge topic of social networking for the writer, we needed to call in a panel of experts… in a round table discussion set in a cool 3D environment, our three esteemed guests were Jeanne Veillette Bowerman and Jamie Livingston of #Scriptchat, and Joshua Stecker of Script Magazine; Gray Jones, in addition to moderating, represented Ink Canada.

Part 1: Are you getting the most out of Facebook and Twitter? What are the differences between them? What pitfalls should you avoid and/or protect yourself against? Why are some people getting a lot more Twitter followers than you? How can you network with top writers without seeming too pushy? We cover all of these topics and much more in part 1 of our massive 100 minute discussion.

In Part 2, we get a lot more specific. We discuss several resources on Facebook, Twitter, and the web in great detail. Jeanne demonstrates how you can attack Twitter with the same creativity with which you attack a script, and maybe even land a job or an agent from it. We expound on blogs and bloggers, of course we talk about more dos and don’ts, and there is an exciting call to arms at the end. We cover all of this and much more in part 2 of our massive 100 minute discussion.

Meet our panel:
Jeanne Veillette Bowerman is the Co-Founder and moderator of the weekly Twitter screenwriters’ chat, #Scriptchat, and a regular columnist for Write On Online and Script Magazine. A graduate of Cornell University, she’s written several spec scripts, including the adaptation of the Pulitzer Prize-winning book, Slavery by Another Name, with its author, Douglas A. Blackmon, senior national correspondent of The Wall Street Journal.

Jamie Livingston is a writer, Co-Founder of #Scriptchat, and President of Romance Writers of America Screenwriting Chapter Script Scene. She’s a business owner and former magazine writer.

Joshua Stecker is the West Coast/Web editor of Script Magazine, co-owner/producer of Modjeska Playhouse theatre company, and a part-time actor.

Gray Jones is a reality TV editor, produced writer, and internationally award winning short film producer. In addition to hosting the TV Writer Podcast in partnership with Script Magazine, he also hosts Chuck vs. the Podcast for NBC’s Chuck, which has been voted the #1 TV-themed podcast in the entire world continuously for the last 28 months. He also runs a database of TV Writers on Twitter, which contains 700 writers and continues to climb.

Follow the round table participants on Twitter:
Jeanne Veillette Bowerman: @jeannevb
Jamie Livingston: @Jamie_LD
Joshua Stecker: @joshuastecker
Gray Jones: @GrayJones

Buy Gray’s book for only $4.99! Look for it on Amazon – How To Break In To TV Writing: Insider Interviews.

Didn’t get your questions asked? Make sure you follow Gray on Twitter (@GrayJones) so you can get the scoop on who is being interviewed and how to get your questions in. Also check out our TV Writer Twitter Database to find Twitter addresses for over 1,000 TV writers. Find our previous episodes and other resources at www.tvwriterpodcast.com or on Gray’s YouTube channel.

018 – Corey Miller (CSI Miami, Body of Proof)

What’s another way to spell “juggernaut?” You could easily spell it C-S-I, or N-C-I-S. The franchises spawned by these shows dominate the ratings, and continue to deliver week after week, month after month. We are very fortunate to have writer-producer Corey Miller with us this week… you’re going to love his story!


Wannabe writers are often told: “get a job as an assistant!” Corey took this to a new level… you’ll love hearing how youthful naivete helped him to land a job with Oliver Stone, why life on Lois & Clark was much better without email, and how he spent much longer than usual in various assisting and coordinating positions before becoming a staff writer, and why it was worth the wait.

Through it all, Corey kept writing, and even though he didn’t have an agent, he sold two freelance scripts to CSI, and his next chapter began! In addition to a story he and then co-writer Philip Chung had sold to Lois & Clark, Corey has also written for six seasons of CSI: Miami, for NCIS: Los Angeles, The Forgotten, and Body of Proof.

Corey also wrote the independent feature Border to Border, and recently sold a pilot to The Peter Chernin Company and Fox.

Follow Corey on Twitter: @TooMuchFire

Buy Gray’s book for only $4.99! Look for it on Amazon – How To Break In To TV Writing: Insider Interviews.

Didn’t get your questions asked? Make sure you follow Gray on Twitter (@GrayJones) so you can get the scoop on who is being interviewed and how to get your questions in. Also check out our TV Writer Twitter Database to find Twitter addresses for over 1,000 TV writers. Find our previous episodes and other resources at www.tvwriterpodcast.com or on Gray’s YouTube channel.

017 – Steven Darancette (Animated TV)

Just like there are far fewer resources for learning TV writing than for learning to write features, there are an incredibly small number of resources for learning to write for animated TV. That’s why it is a great privilege to have animation writer Steven Darancette open a window for us into this field.


As an L.A.-based episodic TV animation writer, Steven has written for shows at Warner Bros. Nickelodeon, Cartoon Network and others, including such well known animated shows as Ozzy & Drix, and Krypto – The Superdog. He has also created over a dozen animated TV series pitches that are in varying stages of development. He has a lot of wisdom to share!

Why will learning to draw help you to write scripts for animation? How does the pay structure for daytime animation work, and why is it highly different from primetime animated shows? Is it true that you pitch by email, even without an agent? If so, how? What problems will a US writer face if they want to tap into the large Canadian animation market?

Steven has also written and produced features, and has a number of projects in development. He has some interesting advice on what to do with the unsold feature scripts you’re written, which are now collecting dust in your drawer…

Follow Steven on Twitter: @sdarancette

Buy Gray’s book for only $4.99! Look for it on Amazon – How To Break In To TV Writing: Insider Interviews.

Didn’t get your questions asked? Make sure you follow Gray on Twitter (@GrayJones) so you can get the scoop on who is being interviewed and how to get your questions in. Also check out our TV Writer Twitter Database to find Twitter addresses for over 1,000 TV writers. Find our previous episodes and other resources at www.tvwriterpodcast.com or on Gray’s YouTube channel.

016 – Ellen Sandler (Author, TV Writer’s Workbook)

This week we have an absolute treat… a 46-minute interview with Emmy-nominated writer-producer, playwright, director, and author of the TV Writer’s Workbook, Ellen Sandler!


Entertainment Today calls Ellen Sandler the “Dalai Lama of television writing”… her TV Writer’s Workbook is used by the top film schools in the world, including USC, UCLA, and NYU. The praise is well-deserved… like Save the Cat by Blake Snyder does for feature writing, Ellen’s book comes from a writer’s approach, telling you in very simple, easy to understand terms, virtually everything you need to know to be a successful TV writer.

Ellen is a seasoned writer — she was nominated for an Emmy for her work as a Co-Executive Producer of the CBS hit series, Everybody Loves Raymond. She has written for many other prime time network television comedies, including ABC’s Coach, and has created original television pilots for ABC, CBS, NBC, Fox Family, Oxygen Network, and the Disney Channel.

Both a teacher and a consultant, Ellen provides script development and career coaching for professionals and emerging writers in the entertainment industry, as well as writing workshops and seminars at conferences and universities both in the US and abroad.

Do we need to tell you she has a ton of wisdom to share? Even if you haven’t read her book, you’ll benefit greatly from the interview. If you have, you’ll get a lot of extra depth.

Follow Ellen on Twitter: @sandlerink — or visit her website at www.sandlerink.com.

Buy Gray’s book for only $4.99! Look for it on Amazon – How To Break In To TV Writing: Insider Interviews.

Didn’t get your questions asked? Make sure you follow Gray on Twitter (@GrayJones) so you can get the scoop on who is being interviewed and how to get your questions in. Also check out our TV Writer Twitter Database to find Twitter addresses for over 1,000 TV writers. Find our previous episodes and other resources at www.tvwriterpodcast.com or on Gray’s YouTube channel.

015 – TV/Feature Writer Wil Zmak

He moved permanently to Los Angeles! And then the phone started ringing for Canadian jobs… Award-winning Canadian TV & feature writer-producer Wil Zmak is sure to win records for the longest commute!


Wil Zmak grew up in Toronto, and studied film at Toronto’s York University (around the same time Gray was there), as well as the Canadian Film Centre. Then, his wife’s career demanded a move to the US, and it was off to Los Angeles!

Now permanently planted in L.A., Wil was offered the first of many Canadian jobs, that would see him travel to Canada for several months at a time, flying home on weekends to be with his family. Since then, Wil has worked as a writer, producer, and story editor on several Canadian television series, including The Listener (CTV, FOX International), The Aladdin Project (CTV), Stone Undercover (Tom Stone – CBC / US syndication), Jinnah on Crime (CBC), and Being Erica (CBC).

Hear the fascinating story of how a conversation with director Paul Fox on the state of film storytelling resulted in Wil writing the script for the 2005 thriller The Dark Hours, which has won fifteen awards at international festivals, including seven for Best Feature.

Wil has also worked in development for both TV and features, and offers many helpful tips, including the best way to adapt novels to the screen; what adaptations can teach you about your original material; targeted networking; and why you shouldn’t limit yourself to the hero’s journey and commonly taught story structures.

Follow Wil Zmak on Twitter: @wilzmak

Buy Gray’s book for only $4.99! Look for it on Amazon – How To Break In To TV Writing: Insider Interviews.

Didn’t get your questions asked? Make sure you follow Gray on Twitter (@GrayJones) so you can get the scoop on who is being interviewed and how to get your questions in. Also check out our TV Writer Twitter Database to find Twitter addresses for over 1,000 TV writers. Find our previous episodes and other resources at www.tvwriterpodcast.com or on Gray’s YouTube channel.

Audio Device Fried – Donations Needed [UPDATED]






Unfortunately, an expensive audio interface device I use for my podcasting went literally up in smoke last night.  It comes at an awkward time, because I am between day job gigs and cash flow is tight.

My partnership with Script Magazine is a creative partnership, not financial – 90% of the podcast expenses come out of my pocket.

Consider the value you’ve received from these exclusive interviews with working writers. Can you please spare a donation, to help replace the audio device?  

Every little bit helps…  No amount is too small (nor too big).

[UPDATE 3:15pm EST]
I’m absolutely blown away by the responses! The cost of the audio device is now covered, and some extra can go toward replacing a fried laptop I use heavily for podcasting, and also an upcoming yearly server bill. If you haven’t had a chance to donate, these other needs are still pending. That said… countless thanks to all!

Many thanks,
Gray.