Being a staff writer can be tough. Being a freelance writer, on the other hand, can be much more than just tough. It can be physically grueling, mentally challenging, spiritually taxing experience. More often than not, the difficulties a freelancer encounters stem not from a lack of talent but from the simple fact that they are on the outside looking in. And, if that “in” happens to be a scifi franchise with over a 300+ hours of television to its credit, falling into step creatively can be a daunting task at best.
Over on his ever-entertaining blog, writer Denis McGrath offers a rundown of his freelance experience on SGU’s first season. About this time last year, Denis delivered some very intriguing story ideas over the course of a phone pitch, demonstrating a strong story sense and, most importantly, a clever SF mindset.
On the strength of that initial conversation, we flew him over to Vancouver where we spent the day spinning one of his ideas, a story that would eventually become episode 13, Faith. As Denis explains in his blog entry, after two drafts Carl Binder ended up doing a pass on the script. The result – one of the strongest episodes of the back half.
Check out Denis’ hair-raising account of the experience here:
No work on my script today but I did end up finishing that first act – last night. Instead, I ended up putting out some green pages for Awakening which starts shooting tomorrow…sometime. It’s almost 9:30 p.m. and I’ve yet to receive a call sheet. Since it’s my episode, I’ll spend the day on set loitering around the craft service table and offering Andy unsolicited directing advice (“Hey, you know what would be cool here?! A swish pan!”). Of course the later the call, the later I get to sleep in – AND the later I stay at work. Looks like I may have to cancel my hot date..with Ghost Whisperer.
I was out late tonight having Chinese noodles and scary crab with Remi, Cintia, and Carl. Will deliver the full report in tomorrow’s blog entry – which I will undoubtedly write between set-ups. In the meantime, here’s a couple of pics I took the other day of Jelly doing her Queen of the Mountain routine…