Alex and Nick invite Billy Domineau, writer of the popular Seinfeld 9/11 spec script and staff writer on Family Guy, to talk about the pros and cons of writing a TV stunt spec.

When should you write a stunt script? What is the process of making and distributing one? How can a TV spec get shared around town? How do you use that popularity to get represented and staffed on a TV show?

The Paper Team goes viral…

SHOWNOTES

Content

1 – Brainstorming, writing, distributing and having the stunt spec script go viral (00:54)
2 – Getting representation, being staffed on Family Guy, lessons from the writers’ room, and using social media as a TV writer (31:01)
Resources and Next Week On (53:23)

Links

Billy Domineau on Twitter
Seinfeld
Billy Domineau’s Seinfeld 9/11 stunt spec (“The Twin Towers”) (PDF)
Family Guy
Upright Citizens Brigade
Nicole Conlan’s The People v. O.J. Simpson stunt spec (“The Briefcase Switcheroo”) (PDF)
The Bechdel test
Jerry Seinfeld (character)
Elaine Benes
Cosmo Kramer
George Costonza
Julia Louis-Dreyfus
“The Conversion” (5×11 – Seinfeld)
“The Secret Code” (7×07 – Seinfeld)
Rachel Bloom
“The 9/11 Seinfeld spec script you absolutely have to read today” – The Comic’s Comic
“What Happens When Your 9/11 ‘Seinfeld’ Spec Script Blows Up the Internet” – Splitsider
“This Seinfeld Episode about 9/11 Is a Model of Comedy Writing and Monumentally Bad Taste” – Slate
Jon Lovett
James Adomian
Chris Kelly
Brandon McCarthy
“Billy Domineau talks September 11 spec script” – Entertainment Weekly
Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee
Rachel Bloom’s “Fuck Me, Ray Bradbury” (Video)
3 Arts Entertainment
United Talent Agency
Alec Sulkin
BET (Black Entertainment Television)
“The Wedding Squanchers” (2×10 – Rick & Morty)
Bowen Yang on Twitter

Resources

Writers’ Guild Foundation Library

This episode brought to you by Tracking Board’s Launch Pad Writing Competitions

Use code PAPERTEAM to get $15 OFF when you enter a Launch Pad Competition

Special thanks to Evan Schmitt for helping us edit this episode.

If you enjoyed this episode (and others), please consider leaving us an iTunes review at paperteam.co/itunes! :)

You can find Paper Team on Twitter:
Alex@TVCalling
Nick@_njwatson
If you have any questions, comments or feedback, you can e-mail us: [email protected]

Update: PT44 transcript available here

Alex and Nick discuss the importance of world-building in television writing and TV pilots.

What is the point of world-building in TV shows? What are some good and bad examples of mythology? How can you implement world-building effectively in your own writing? What are some common pitfalls to avoid falling into?

The Paper Team sets the scene…

SHOWNOTES

Content

1 – Defining world-building (00:58)
2 – Tools of world-building (10:03)
3 – Common pitfalls of world-building (20:19)
Takeaways and Resources (29:22)

Links

The Shield
Vic Mackey
Claudette Wyms
C. C. H. Pounder
The Practice
Battlestar Galactica
The Man in the High Castle (TV Series)
Firefly
American Gods (TV Series)
Cosmos: A Personal Voyage
Logan
Defiance (TV Series)
17th Precinct
Battle of Serenity Valley (Firefly)
The Handmaid’s Tale (TV Series)
“Unfinished Business” (3×09 – Battlestar Galactica)
Caprica
Lostpedia
“TV Writer vs. Fandom: Writers’ Rooms and Fan Interaction” (PT38)
“The One with the Prom Video” (2×14 – Friends)

Resources

r/worldbuilding (reddit)
Writing in the Margins’ Sensitivity Readers

This episode brought to you by Tracking Board’s Launch Pad Writing Competitions

Use code PAPERTEAM to get $15 OFF when you enter a Launch Pad Competition

Special thanks to Jason J. Cohn for helping us edit this episode.

If you enjoyed this episode (and others), please consider leaving us an iTunes review at paperteam.co/itunes! :)

You can find Paper Team on Twitter:
Alex@TVCalling
Nick@_njwatson
If you have any questions, comments or feedback, you can e-mail us: [email protected]

Alex and Nick invite Gary Sundt, writers’ assistant on NBC’s Superstore and ABC’s The Goldbergs, to discuss the ins-and-outs of assisting TV writers in comedy.

How do comedy writers’ rooms operate? How do those experiences in the room help your own writing? When and how should you navigate asking your boss to read your content? What are the priorities when helping a writer develop a pilot? What is the meaning of storytelling?

The Paper Team pulls up a chair…

SHOWNOTES

Content

Being a writer’s assistant, assisting a showrunner in developing pilots, working in a writer’s room, and the role of comedy in politics (00:01:20)
Resources and Next Time On (1:14:32)

Links

Gary Sundt on Twitter
Superstore (TV Series)
The Goldbergs (2013 TV series)
Playboy’s the Antiviral Show
Archie Comics
Kill Bill
Angel (TV Series)
Star Trek: Deep Space Nine
Marley & Me
Clerks II
Summertime Killers
Rick Wiener
Kenny Schwartz
American Housewife
Charlie Grandy
Guys With Kids
Super Fun Night
Justin Spitzer
Dan Harmon
Mulaney
America Ferrara
Ruben Fleischer
Colossal
Adam F. Goldberg
Joseph Campbell
Michael Arndt
Blake Snyder
“Save the Cat” – Blake Snyder
Neil Gaiman
Twister (Film)
Independence Day (Film)
Adam Wingard
Death Note (2017 Film)
“The Hidden Life of Trees” – Peter Wohlleben
“Rapt: Attention and the Focused Life” – Winifred Gallagher
“Essays in Love” – Alain de Botton
“Modern Romance” – Aziz Ansari

Resources

Michael Arndt’s “Setting a Story in Motion” (Video)
“What Are You Laughing At?” – Dan O’Shannon

This episode brought to you by Tracking Board’s Launch Pad Writing Competitions

Use code PAPERTEAM to get $15 OFF when you enter a Launch Pad Competition

Special thanks to Alex Switzky for helping us edit this episode.

If you enjoyed this episode (and others), please consider leaving us an iTunes review at paperteam.co/itunes! :)

You can find Paper Team on Twitter:
Alex@TVCalling
Nick@_njwatson
If you have any questions, comments or feedback, you can e-mail us: [email protected]

Alex and Nick discuss how television viewing habits impact the writing and enjoyment of TV shows.

How does the way you consume a show influence the audience? How have changes in viewing habits transformed television writing itself? What are some ways to use that paradigm shift in your own writing?

The Paper Team binges in one sitting…

SHOWNOTES

Content

1 – How people consume TV today (00:52)
2 – How viewing habits impact the perception of TV shows (11:37)
3 – How viewing habits affect and influence TV writing (25:44)
4 – A little about the future of TV viewing (42:20)
Takeaways and Resources (45:45)

Links

Over-the-top content (OTT)
YouTube TV
YouTube Red
“Why mythological shows are often idolized” – TV Calling
The Hatch
Final Five
“Damon Lindelof Doesn’t Want Critics To Binge Season 3 of The Leftovers” – IndieWire
“The Art of the TV Episode” (PT20)
“Two Boats and a Helicopter” (1×03 – The Leftovers)
“Guest” (1×06 – The Leftovers)
“The Bythewoods and The Writers Retreat” – 3rd & Fairfax
Flesh and Bone

Resources

“Netflix Studied Your Binge-Watching Habit” – The New York Times
“Series, Movie, Series, Repeat: A New Netflix Binge Routine” – Netflix

This episode brought to you by Tracking Board’s Launch Pad Writing Competitions

Use code PAPERTEAM to get $15 OFF when you enter a Launch Pad Competition

Special thanks to Alex Switzky for helping us edit this episode.

If you enjoyed this episode (and others), please consider leaving us an iTunes review at paperteam.co/itunes! :)

You can find Paper Team on Twitter:
Alex@TVCalling
Nick@_njwatson
If you have any questions, comments or feedback, you can e-mail us: [email protected]

Hi there!

Alex Freedman

I'm Alex Freedman, the writer behind TV Calling.


I started this site in 2008 to chronicle my own journey in television writing.

687 posts and 9 years later, TV Calling has also become a comprehensive resource dedicated to the full TV writing industry — from spec to success.


Everything here is written by yours truly (unless otherwise credited), so feel free to blame me for any missed deadlines.


I hope you'll answer your television calling, and join me in this creative journey.


Write on.


P.S.: New around? You should start here.

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