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ALL: Writing for Daytime Television

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Writing for Daytime Television

Wednesday, June 20 / 7 p.m.

Soap operas have been a staple on television for over fifty years. Join the Writers Guild of America, East for a lively discussion about what goes into the day-to-day creation of the characters, stories, and scripts we love to watch.

"Writing for Daytime Television" includes a panel of industry notables:

David Kreizman, Head Writer for Guiding Light

Shelly Altman, Breakdown Writer for One Life to Live

Judy Tate, Script Writer for As the World Turns

Leslie Nipkow, Script Editor for One Life to Live

Claire Labine, Co-Creator of Ryan's Hope

Tom Fontana, Writer/Executive Producer of St. Elsewhere, Homicide: Life on the Street, and Oz will moderate the evening's program. A Q&A follows the panel discussion.

The evening begins at 7:00 p.m. with a wine and cheese reception prior to the start of the program at 7:30 p.m.

The JCC is located at 334 Amsterdam at 76th Street. Please note that you will need to order tickets in advance for the program directly through the JCC by calling 646-505-5708. Tickets for WGAE and JCC members are $8 in advance (recommended) and $10 at the door. The ticket price is charged by the venue, not the WGAE.

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CRAP! :angry:

I'm out of town for Juneteenth (June 19th) and I won't be back until the day after. I live in Fairfield County so it's only a 45 minute train ride.


There'd better be a podcast, transcript or somethin'!

It's a good thing I don't like wine and cheese ANY way! : <_<

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Here are some questions I hope someone will ask if they are not addressed during the panel discussion:

1. What kind of soap writing do you think is most enjoyable -- breakdown, dialogue, head writing? Why?

2. Do you believe that after a few years of writing on a show, especially head writing, one can "burn out"? How do you know when that's happened, are there ways to avoid this, and what should a writer do when he's burned out?

3. Do fanbases have too much power over storylines today, even at the cost of what you believe to be character integrity?

4. What is the role of social issues and realism in American soap writing?

5. Have any of you seen EastEnders? What do you think of it?

6. Is there a future for the soap genre in daytime television?

7. Do you write with particular demographics in mind (such as "women 18-49"), or do you write to tell a good story that's consistent with the characters?

8. Do you think soaps today introduce too many new characters, instead of using the characters and the history they already have (in fresh, relevant ways)?

9. Do you think there's a place for more serious soap journalism that goes deep behind-the-scenes on shows, analyzes each story for meanings and asks the cast and the writers serious questions like that, and interviews past cast and crew members to go deep into the writing and production process and to highlight soap history? Do you think there's a place for a magazine that takes soaps as seriously as, say "Doctor Who Magazine" takes Doctor Who (a long-running British science-fiction series that started in 1963, around the same time as many of the soaps)?

10. What is the best thing about writing for soaps today? What is the worst thing?

11. Soap fans say they don't want to be talked down to, but sometimes they seem to complain and not get it when a show is being subtle, dealing with important issues, or creative. For example, Ms. Labine, your General Hospital fell in the ratings during Robin and Stone's AIDS story. Your Ryan's Hope also had ratings difficulties. Sometimes it seems like soap fans just want their shirtless men and catfights, and don't want to follow a good story as it unfolds. Are soap fans really smart, or do they just say they are? Be honest -- especially if you're not working in the industry anymore, haha!

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