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Successful Television Writing

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Overview

The industry speaks out about SUCCESSFUL TELEVISION WRITING

"Where was this book when I was starting out? A fantastic, fun, informative guide to breaking into-andand more importantly, staying in-the TV writing game from the guys who taught me how to play it."
—Terence Winter, Coexecutive Producer, The Sopranos

"Goldberg and Rabkin write not only with clarity and wit but also with the authority gleaned from their years of slogging through Hollywood's trenches. Here is a must-read...

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Successful Television Writing

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Overview

The industry speaks out about SUCCESSFUL TELEVISION WRITING

"Where was this book when I was starting out? A fantastic, fun, informative guide to breaking into-andand more importantly, staying in-the TV writing game from the guys who taught me how to play it."
—Terence Winter, Coexecutive Producer, The Sopranos

"Goldberg and Rabkin write not only with clarity and wit but also with the authority gleaned from their years of slogging through Hollywood's trenches. Here is a must-read for new writers and established practitioners whose imagination could use a booster shot."
—Professor Richard Walter, Screenwriting Chairman, UCLA Department of Film and TV

"Not since William Goldman's Adventures in the Screen Trade has there been a book this revealing, funny, and informative about The Industry. Reading this book is like having a good, long lunch with your two best friends in the TV business."
—Janet Evanovich

"With sharp wit and painful honesty, Goldberg and Rabkin offer the truest account yet of working in the TV business. Accept no substitutes!"
—Jeffrey B. Hodes and Nastaran Dibai, Coexecutive Producers, Third Rock from the Sun

"Should be required reading for all aspiring television writers."
—Howard Gordon, Executive Producer, 24 and The X-Files

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
* "...Never dull, Successful Television Writing is a pleasure to read. This one goes to the top of my pile..." (The Write Stuff, February 2004)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781630261733
  • Publisher: Turner Publishing Company
  • Publication date: 7/1/2003
  • Series: Wiley Books For Writers Series , #1
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 222
  • Product dimensions: 6.20 (w) x 10.00 (h) x 0.80 (d)

Meet the Author

Lee Goldberg
LEE GOLDBERG and WILLIAM RABKIN are veteran "showrunners" whose executive producing credits include the long-running drama Diagnosis Murder and the action-adventure hit Martial Law. Their writing and producing credits also include SeaQuest 2032, Spenser: For Hire, Hunter, Baywatch, Sliders, The Cosby Mysteries, Monk, and Nero Wolfe, to name a few. Both are former journalists who covered the television industry for Newsweek, American Film, the San Francisco Chronicle, and the Los Angeles Times Syndicate, among others. In addition, Rabkin has directed episodes of Diagnosis Murder and has taught a popular television writing course at UCLA. Goldberg is also a mystery novelist (Beyond the Beyond, My Gun Has Bullets) and the author of a definitive book on television series development (Unsold TV Pilots). He has taught writing seminars in Seattle, Miami, Denver, and Edmonton, Canada.
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Table of Contents

Acknowledgments.

Introduction: So You Want to Write for Television.

Chapter 1. Basic Preparation.

Chapter 2. What is a TV Series.

Chapter 3. The Four Act Structure.

Chapter 4. Telling a TV Story.

Chapter 5. The Spec Script.

Chapter 6. What to Spec?

Chapter 7. The Name is Morris, William Morris.

Chapter 8. The Pitch.

Chapter 9. How to Read the Producer's Mind.

Chapter 10. What to Pitch.

Chapter 11. You've Got the Assignment, Now What?

Chapter 12. Your First Assignment.

Chapter 13. We've Got a Few Notes.

Chapter 14. Am I There Yet?

Chapter 15. Becoming Rob Petrie.

Chapter 16. Rewrites.

Chapter 17. Your Really Great Idea For a Show.

Chapter 18. I'm a Professional Writer, and I've Got the Card to Prove It.

Afterword.

Appendices.

A.  Plotting a Mystery: How We Wrote Diagnosis Murder.

B.  Diagnosis Murder Writers' Guidelines.

C.  Martial Law Writers' Guidelines.

D.  Martial La Pitch/Leave-Behind.

E.  Martial Law Beat Sheet.

F.  seaQuest 2032 Pitch/Leave-Behind.

G.  seaQuest 2032 Beat Sheet.

H.  Diagnosis Murder Beat Sheet.

I.  Diagnosis Murder Beat Sheet.

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Customer Reviews

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Sort by: Showing all of 3 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted November 16, 2013

    Info on both writers

    Lee Goldbergh for MONK,Starring - Adrian Monk-detective,Sharona Fleming-assistant 1 through 3 rd episodes,Natalie Teeger-personal assistant 3 through 8 episodes, Captain stollmeyer-captain for police, Randy Disher- luitenant for police.

    Willian Rabkin for PSYCH, starring, Shawn Spencer- psychic, Burton Guster- partner for shawn, Lasister- head detective for SBPD (Santa Barbara Police Department), Juliet o hara- police officer.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 12, 2011

    Great

    Fast shipping for a great book.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 25, 2003

    Those who CAN do Teach

    Okay, there are a million books on how to write a script out there. Why should you invest in one more? A couple of reasons that Successful Television Writing by Lee Goldberg and William Rabkin is worth your $15.95: 1) Unlike most writing books, this one is written by working pros. They have done their time at every level of the TV biz, from staff writer to showrunner. They know how it really works. They draw on nearly two decades of experience to teach you how to write a spec that will get you in the door -- and what to expect once that door actually swings open. 2) Unlike most writing books, this one isn't going to waste your time teaching you about Aristotle (again) or formatting (again) or the definitions of character and drama (again). They assume you know the basics. This book is for people who have mastered the basic skills and are ready to try their hands at writing for a living. Or who want to see what the TV life is like before jumping in themselves 3) Unlike most writing books, this isn't a dry how-to. In the words of best-selling author Janet Evanovich, 'Not since William Goldman's Adventures in the Screen Trade has there been a book this revealing, funny, and informative about The Industry. Reading this book is like having a good, long lunch with your two best friends in the TV business.' Or, as Terence Winter, co-exec producer of The Sopranos, says: 'Where was this book when I was starting out? A fantastic, fun, informative guide to breaking into -- and more importantly, staying in -- the TV writing game from the guys who taught me how to play it.'

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
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