Writing the 1-Hour TV Drama
At a Glance
What does it take to make a great 1 hour television drama script? Is it a compelling plot or protagonist? Is it engaging dialogue or originality? In this six-week course, you will learn what makes a script work in the tv drama genre. Learn exactly what can set a good script that gets set in the waste basket apart from an outstanding one that can get you a writing job or a production deal.
The world of the one-hour drama is thriving—and always looking for new talent and fresh ideas. Special effects and shooting budgets are soaring. The small screen and the big screen are getting closer all the time, but you still you have to know the rules of the game.
By the end of this course, you will develop and perfect an act of your tv drama script that is ready to go right into a producer’s hands!
This workshop is offered in two formats. The budget-friendly On Demand option (which is for sale here) gives you the option to work on the same great workshop materials as the Online option, only without instructor feedback. You'll immediately receive our comprehensive course in PDF format, which provides instructions and exercises on specific skills you will need to succeed as a screenwriter. You can purchase the On Demand option here. To get the Online option with instructor feedback and online discussions with other students, please click here.
- Types of shows now on television and how to differentiate
- Writing opportunities in a rapidly changing market
- For whom is the TV writer writing?
- How to earn a professional reputation
- The importance of the 60 minute drama format for all TV writing
- Each show type has its own specialized writing format
- Why proper formats exist and must be used rigorously
- Headings, narrative, dialogue, parenthetical directions, and transitions
- How to preserve individuality and innovation in strictly formatted writing
- Aristotle’s “three part structure”
- Each part has a length and set of requirements to fulfill
- A modern addition is the “halfway point” and what it must accomplish
- How to transpose the three part structure onto a complex television script broken into 4 or 5 acts based on the need for commercial breaks
- A TV writer must be able to reproduce existing characters
- Each episode needs single use, unique characters that fit the show’s needs
- What are the major character types, including their functions and traits?
- How to make bland characters come to life
- Dialogue should be as natural sounding as possible, with each line in opposition to the lines before and after it
- How to use and not abuse parenthetical directions in dialogue
- Narrative, describing the biggest image possible with the fewest words
- How to surf the crests: tell only the important actions in narrative and let the director cast take care of the rest
- Avoid trite lines and descriptions
- Acts have structures similar to the three-part structure, with beginnings, middles and ends
- The first act has many jobs: hooking the reader (ultimately viewer), introducing the plot and conflict, setting the seeds for the ending, and setting the episode’s tone
- How to end the first act?
- The middle acts and what they must accomplish, including the halfway point
- The final act: how to create a resounding finale
- Publication date: 09/19/2013
- Return policy: This item is not eligible for return.
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