Cartoon: Contemplation

TVWriter™’s all-time favorite artist/philosopher, Grant Snider, shows us what contemplation does for and to him. Because it’s a process, see, with no specific end.

See more of Grant Snider’s extraordinary perception of human creativity at Incidental Comics, HERE

Check out his new book!

‘Archive 81’ Podcast to Become Streaming Video Series at Netflix

Mainstream showbiz has been snatching up podcasts for awhile now, and we just learned that one of this TVWriter™ minion’s faves is making its way through the Netflix development tunnel. “O frabjous day! Callooh callay!”

by Jacob Fisher

…A series based on the found footage horror podcast Archive 81 is in early development at Netflix.

Archive 81 ?is a found footage podcast horror drama exploring the supernatural and gentrification in the big city through a found-­footage format. Set in the greater New York City area, the show’s time period alternates between the present day and the mid­-90s. The show follows Dan, a solitary archivist who works at a remote facility where he has been tasked with cataloging hundreds of hours of old audio tape.

Dan’s employer is the City of New York’s Housing Historical Society… or so he thinks. Many of the recorded tapes appear to consist of old interviews between a social worker named Melody Pendrass and the residents of a mysterious apartment tower block known as The Visser Building. It’s not clear what Melody’s looking for in her interviews, but the more tenants she talks to, the creepier things get. As Dan probes deeper into the tapes and the mysterious origins of the Visser building, Melody’s story starts to reveal unsettling facts about the archive, his employers, and even the nature of the physical world we live in.

The podcast begun on April 5th, 2016 and is in its third season. New episodes will be released every other Wednesday. Listen, wherever you get your podcasts. The podcast can be found on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Stitcher and Radiopublic. Daniel Powell and Marc Sollinger, who created the iconic podcast series together, will serve as co-producers on the upcoming series for Netflix….

Read it all at

Are You A Success Addict? Should You Be?

Hey you, Mr. Big Success, wondering why you aren’t happy? Could be that you’ve dedicated your life to achieving the wrong goal. Here are the deets, via

by Arthur C. Brooks

Imagine reading a story titled “The Relentless Pursuit of Booze.” You would likely expect a depressing story about a person in a downward alcoholic spiral. Now imagine instead reading a story titled “The Relentless Pursuit of Success.” That would be an inspiring story, wouldn’t it?

Maybe—but maybe not. It might well be the story of someone whose never-ending quest for more and more success leaves them perpetually unsatisfied and incapable of happiness.

Physical dependency keeps alcoholics committed to their vice, even as it wrecks their happiness. But arguably more powerful than the physical addiction is the sense that drinking is a relationship, not an activity. As the author Caroline Knapp described alcoholism in her memoir Drinking: A Love Story, “It happened this way: I fell in love and then, because the love was ruining everything I cared about, I had to fall out.” Many alcoholics know that they would be happier if they quit, but that isn’t the point. The decision to keep drinking is to choose that intense love—twisted and lonely as it is—over the banality of mere happiness.

Though it isn’t a conventional medical addiction, for many people success has addictive properties. To a certain extent, I mean that literally—praise stimulates the neurotransmitter dopamine, which is implicated in all addictive behaviors. (This is basically how social media keeps people hooked: Users get a dopamine hit from the “likes” generated by a post, keeping them coming back again and again, hour after miserable hour.)…

Read it all at

Book Sales are Up

Nathan Bransford, one of TVWriter™’s favorite writers and writing consultants is here to talk about last week’s good news in the world of book publishing, mainly that – hallelujah! – book sales are up!

by Nathan Bransford


It’s not all doom and gloom out there in book land. Amid the pandemic and , per Jane Friedman book sales in 2020 are poised to be one of the best years in recent memory, with children’s books a particular bright spot.

Stacey Garratt and Jeff Rivera published an extensive look at systemic racism in the publishing industry. Quite a few authors have been asking me lately about what systemic bias looks like in practice, and this is a really good rundown.

It’s quite a fun game to try to spot as many books as possible on celebrity bookshelves. The celebrity bookshelf detective is on the case!

This article by Anne Trubek is one of the best posts on writing query letters I’ve read in years. It’s so important to remember your responsibility as an author and to treat a query letter with the importance it deserves. It’s an email that could land you a book deal….

Read it all at

Need help with your book? Nathan is available for manuscript edits, query critiques, and coaching!

For my best advice, check out Nathan’s guide to writing a novel (now available in audio) and his guide to publishing a book.

And if you like this post: subscribe to Nathan’s newsletter!

Herbie J Pilato Presents Michael Landon’s Remarkable Life

by Herbie J Pilato

Michael Landon enjoyed an astonishing career as an actor, writer, director, and producer. His success was all the more impressive given that he was relatively small in stature (5’9″), and retained a boyishness that would have robbed a lesser man of the aura of authority needed to attain his career heights.

Landon was a popular staple on television in the 1950s, ’60s, ’70s, and ’80s until he succumbed to liver and pancreatic cancer at only 54-years-old on July 1, 1991. But he will forever be remembered as Joseph “Little Joe” Cartwright on three of TV’s top shows, all of which aired on NBC: Bonanza (1959–73), caring father Charles Ingalls on Little House on the Prairie (1974–1983) and Jonathan, the Angel, on Highway to Heaven (1984 to 1989).

“Grasshopper” Remember Charles

Actor Radames Pera, who portrayed “Young Grasshopper” on Kung Fu (ABC, 1974–1976), was later cast as John Jr. on Little House. Pera said Landon was “a consummate pro and real ‘actor’s director,’” but was ambivalent towards his fame, both embracing and suffering from it.

Read it all at

Writer/producer Herbie J Pilato is the host of the TV talk show THEN AGAIN WITH HERBIE J PILATO, now streaming on Amazon Prime and the author of several pop-culture/media tie-in books. He has been part of TVWriter™ for over 20 years and is Contributing Editor Emeritus. Learn more about Herbie J HERE