TV Writers' Summit
TV Writers' Summit with Chad Gervich, Jen Grisanti and Ellen Sandler
Course Outline / Schedule
Day 1 - The Essentials
Day 1 of the TV Writers' Summit is a crash course on creating, developing, writing and producing your TV show, as well as understanding the business of television (who buys shows, networks, pitching, etc.). Each speaker takes to the stage for almost 2.5 hours to cover a component based on their expertise. It's a fast-paced, non-stop day that'll give you the tools you need to start developing and writing your TV show.
Ellen Sandler - 9:00am to 11:30am
WHAT’S NEW? – CREATING A TV PILOT
An overview of what you need to know to develop and write a professional level original pilot for today’s series television marketplace.
The 1 Key You Must Have to Create a Pilot - Focusing your Premise
The 2 Essential Elements that Make a Series
The 3 Pillars of Any Pilot - The Foundation Of Every Successful Show
- Defining Your Central Character
- Building Your Show’s “Family”
- Creating the World of Your Show
The 4 Support Beams of a Series Pilot
- Defining Your Arena
- Committing to Your Genre
- Establishing Your Series Tone
- Effecting a Style
Developing Your Story Lines
What Makes a Great Pilot Story
Tips on You Can Use Your Pilot To Advance Your Career
Chad Gervich - 11:30am to 2:00pm
SELLING A TV SHOW AND THE BUSINESS OF TELEVISION
In order to bring your show idea to life, you need to create it, write it, pitch it, sell it, and navigate TV's development process. During Chad's session, he details the main steps of selling a TVshow in today's global broadcast and cable landscape. He'll discuss the elements of every successful TV show, how to develop and organize them into a pitch, and when, where, and how to get them to the most appropriate buyers. You'll also learn:
- Networks, cable networks and studios' secret schedule for buying projects… and why timing is essential
- Creative ingredients every producer or exec looks for… and how to insert them into your pitch
- The most important element of any TV show or pitch… and how to convince execs you have it
- Which tools and secrets help your pitch and which will undermine it
- Where and how to get an agent or manager… and when to find the right representative for you
- The structure of TV’s network/studio/pod system…How it's changing…And how to navigate it
- How to find, meet, and network with TV's power-players… and who you don't need to meet
- How the business is changing, and why these changes can help you
Jennifer Grisanti - 3:00pm to 5:30pm
STORY DESIGN & CHARACTERLoglines
- A Logline for your Life
- A Logline for your Script
- Powerful Dilemma
- Clear Goal Stemming from the Dilemma
- Act outs need to connect back to the goal
- Writing the opening
- Identifying an external goal that stems from the opening dilemma
- Scene Construction
- Writing each act
- Writing toward the external goal in the A story
- Writing the external stakes arc
- Writing with a theme
- Writing the resolution and setting up the series
Day 2 - The Workshop - 10:00am to 5:00pm
Day 2 of the TV Writers' Summit is a fun and intense hands-on workshop where you'll be able to expand and develop your idea for a show.
The audience will be broken up into groups and work with each Pro throughout the day as they take you through the paces to help develop and flesh out your show ideas. Each group will spend 2 hours with each Pro and cover:
Jennifer Grisanti Learn how to tell and sell your story. In Jen Grisanti's workshop, she will show you how to structurally frame your story in your log line, your Log Line for Your Life, and the opening of your pilot story. She will take you through exercises and formulas as a way to teach you the techniques that will lead you to success with your script and your personal story. These tools have led many of the writers that she's worked with to sell pilots and get staffed.
Ellen Sandler Once you’ve got your story engine up and running, you need a driver if you’re
going to get anywhere. Every network exec and every showrunner will tell you: Characters drive
(and sell!) a series—they are the beating heart of a show and what the audience comes back to
see. In your workshop with Ellen you’ll discover simple techniques on how to make your
characters multi-dimensional, how to give them emotional life and how to get them into action;
crucial tools that let you put your characters where they belong: In the driver’s seat!
Chad Gervich The most important part of any TV show -- and the thing that makes TV its own
unique medium, distinct from film, theater, or literature -- is its ability to generate an endless
number of stories. If your show doesn’t have that, a powerful story generator, you ain’t got nothin’.
In your workshop with Chad, you’ll gain the tools you need to sharpen your characters and
create compelling conflicts. You’ll also give your concept a writers-room litmus test to determine
whether its strong enough to generate the right stories to sustain an entire series. If it’s not --
we’ll discuss how to whip it into shape. If it is -- go sell it for a 22-episode order and a million-
dollar overall deal.
And, of course, in between sessions, you'll be able to ask the Pros any questions you may have.
Finally, at the end of the day, you'll have the opportunity to pitch your idea to the Pros and Audience (if you want). The favorite writer's pitch will receive a free ticket to the big Story Expo 2015 conference in Los Angeles the weekend of Sept. 11-13, 2015 (a $249 value!), as well as copies of all of the Pros' books (a $128 value!).
Doubletree Hotel Times Square
New York, NY 10036
- Date available: 07/29/2014
- Return policy: This item is not eligible for return.
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Meet the Author: Chad Gervich
Chad Gervich has worked as a TV writer, producer, and executive. He’s written, developed, and produced shows for the Littlefield Company, Fox Television Studios, Paramount Television, NBC, Warner Bros., ABC, Fox Reality Channel, E! Entertainment Television, and 20th Century Fox.
Meet the Author: Ellen Sandler
Ellen Sandler was nominated for an Emmy as a Co-Executive Producer of Everybody Loves Raymond. She has created over 20 pilots for ABC, CBS, NBC, Fox Family, Oxygen and the Disney Channel and has consulted internationally on pilots for the ABC Australia; the CBC Canada; Media Marketing, Dubai; and MediaCorp, Singapore. A writer/producer on more than a dozen prime time TV shows, she is the author of The TV Writer’s Workbook (Bantam/Dell).
Ellen is also a playwright and director. Her most recent theatrical project was her adaptation of N.Y. Times food writer Mimi Sheraton’s book, The Bialy Eaters, which st...
Meet the Author: Jen Grisanti
International speaker Jen Grisanti is an acclaimed Story/Career Consultant at Jen Grisanti Consultancy Inc., Writing Instructor for Writers on the Verge at NBC, a former 12-year studio executive, including VP of Current Programming at CBS/Paramount, blogger for The Huffington Post and author of the books, Story Line: Finding Gold In Your Life Story and TV Writing Tool Kit: How To Write a Script That Sells and her new book, Change Your Story, Change Your Life: A Path To Your Success.
Grisanti started her career in 1992 as an assistant to Aaron Spelling, who served as her mentor for 12 years, and she quickly climbed the ranks and eventually ra...