To be perfectly honest, I was looking forward to some time off. Nothing crazy. Maybe a month. Or six. While a lot of my fellow writers start going stir crazy after a few directionless weeks, I have no problem sleeping in, spending time with my girlfriend and the dogs, and reading into the wee hours. And that WAS the plan but, prior to leaving Vancouver, my agent arranged for sit-downs with some of the local production companies. I figured, why not? If nothing else, I would know what I’d be missing.
Anyway, great meetings all, and one in particular in which I was presented with the opportunity to help develop something. I liked the project a lot, but especially liked the people involved – and, at this point in my career, that’s what I’m looking for: interesting projects and good collaborators. As they used to say on Stargate: “LTS” (Life’s Too Short).
And time off, apparently, is even shorter.
So, after reviewing the project and offering my take (and, of course, assuring them I wasn’t THAT crazy), I was hired. David Ray and I spent about a month fleshing out the world, the backstory, the characters, and arcs. We delivered the overview, received some input from the broadcaster and production company, and prepared for the writers’ room.
I elected to bring in local-kid-makes-good Alex Levine, a former script coordinator on Stargate (and practicing lawyer before that!) who ended up making quite a name for himself in his days as a writer and Co-Executive Producer on Orphan Black. Yes, he has an impressive track record. But, more importantly, he has a great head for story and characters.
Which he has proven over the past two days of spinning. He, David, Samantha, and I dedicated Monday to
waiting for the white board to arrive broad stroking the major story beats. Then, today, we ate pastries David picked up from the Italian bakery across the street focused on individual character arcs. I figure tomorrow, we’ll finish up the character arcs, then dedicate Thursday and Friday to fleshing out our first episode.
And, once that’s done, it’ll be smooooooth sailing. I’ll write an outline, possibly a revised outline, and then go to script.
Can’t reveal much about this project except to say that it’s a compelling, character-driven SF series chock full of surprises, humor, and warmth. Every sci-fi show I’ve worked on in the past – SG-1, Atlantis, Universe, and Dark Matter – has been, at its heart, about the family.
I have no doubt – you’re gonna love it!