Wednesday, 22 March 2017

Waiting Impatiently ...

Any day soon I will be able properly to mention the TV series I have been working on since 2013 which finally goes into production in April for transmission in November 2017. Not a Jenny Cooper adaptation (hopefully that is happening in Canada - a Canadian company are working on it), but something completely original and written for TV.
I stopped writing TV full time nearly 10 years ago to concentrate on novels. At that time TV drama was very much led by TV executives and there wasn't an awful lot of space for writers to have their heads. As a TV writer the job was to come up with pitches that suited the shopping list of the current commissioners (who change very frequently, and the new ones always bin projects in development). Then along came the Scandi dramas and US shows like Breaking Bad which told slow burn stories over many episodes. They developed characters in ways that TV had failed to do before. Suddenly the television form was resembling the novel and writing was important again. The advent of streaming services like Netflix and Amazon has only cemented this change. TV drama is aspiring again and what audiences are being treated to is the depth of character only writers can deliver - with the help of brilliant producers, directors and actors.
My show has its compromises - I have to answer to a script editor, two producers, two executive producers, distributors and even a French television station which is going to be broadcasting it - but it's a story told over eight episodes which will hopefully come back for a second series and carry on. I've remained faithful to the original concept and had some excellent input from others on the way. There's a large element of collaboration in the process - good TV has a very strong central idea and narrative that belongs to the writer, and others help polish and burnish it.
The moment there's an official press release I'll post some more info and a few pictures that give a flavour of the show and the story. We read through the scripts with the cast on April 10th and start filming April 18th in South Wales.
In the meantime, a few pictures from one of the principal locations - Laugharne, the last home of Dylan Thomas.