Herbie J Pilato On How to Create & Produce a TV Show that SELLS

EDITOR’S NOTE: TVWriter™ legendary Contributing Editor Emeritus Herbie J Pilato has something to say that 99% of those who visit TVWriter™ want – and need to hear. Take is away, HJ!


by Herbie J Pilato

I have wanted my own TV show ever since I was a little kid.

Who hasn’t, right?

Especially in today’s all-access media/communications world in which anything is possible.

But Then Again with Herbie J Pilato, my new classic TV talk show (now streaming on Amazon Prime, Shout! Factory TV, and several other media outlets), did not happen overnight.

It took more like over 50 years, following decades of branding myself a classic TV “go-to-guy,” either as the author of various classic TV companion books or through the general chronicling and celebration of classic TV via various websites, magazine and newspaper articles, appearances on entertainment news TV or radio shows or documentaries (for which I either wrote, consulted on or produced).

The show happened for a lot of reasons…and I certainly didn’t do it alone, but rather with a generous and unending amount of support from business partners and investors; countless friends, family members and social media followers….

Read it all at medium.com


Writer/producer Herbie J Pilato is the host ofclassic TV talk show THEN AGAIN WITH HERBIE J PILATO, now streaming on Amazon Prime, Founder and Executive Director of The Classic TV Preservation Society, and author of several classic TV companion books. He has been part of TVWriter™ for 20 years and is Contributing Editor Emeritus. Learn more about Herbie J HERE. This article first appeared in Medium.

10 Most Viewed TVWriter™ Posts of the Week – Jan. 27, 2020

Good morning! Welcome to another new week at TVWriter™, starting with our latest look at the most popular blog posts and resource pages during the  last week.

They are, in order:

‘The Following’ Season 4 was Cancelled by Fox Because the TV Series Became a Victim of Lazy Writing!

How To Write The Perfect TV Series Review To Captivate Your Readers

Corporal Punishment and Primetime TV

Writing the Dreaded Outline

SPIDER-MAN UNLIMITED SECOND SEASON ARC

PEOPLE’S PILOT 2019 Semi-Finalists!

PEOPLE’S PILOT 2019 Writing Contest

The Silver Surfer

ENTERTAINMENT INDUSTRY NEWS AUDIO EDITION – 01/23/2020

How to Write a Script for an Animated Show

Big thanks to everybody for helping us have another terrific week at TVWriter™. Don’t forget to click above and read what you missed and re-read what you loved!

How writers & their readers are surviving Amazon’s closing of a beloved fan service

If this tale of Amazon’s latest betrayal to its users – in this case the writers and readers of fan fiction – doesn’t bring a tear to your eye, we’ll end up with many more tears in ours. (WTF did we just say?) Anyway…


by Travis Clark

Desiree Holt, affectionately known as the oldest author of erotic romance at 83 years old, climbed out of a financial plight in 2013 thanks to Amazon.

At the time, Holt was writing romance novels for the the publishing company Ellora’s Cave, which was collapsing and ultimately shut down in 2016. Holt felt her income was in jeopardy. But in 2013, Amazon launched a fan-fiction service called Kindle Worlds, a digital publishing platform that let authors publish fan fiction within certain licensed “worlds,” which at first included properties from Warner Bros.’ Alloy Entertainment, like “Gossip Girl,” “Pretty Little Liars,” and “The Vampire Diaries.”

Holt embraced the new platform and said she was making between $3,000 and $5,000 a month on Kindle Worlds, a “huge part” of her income.

But in 2018, Holt suddenly found herself back to the drawing board when Amazon shut down Kindle Worlds. And she’s not the only one. Business Insider spoke to several romance authors about losing out on thousands of dollars in monthly income when the platform closed.

“When Kindle Worlds shut down, it hit me financially,” Holt said. “That’s a big hole in your pocket. It took me a while to build back up to that level again.”

And she’s also borrowed a bit of the Kindle Worlds model to help boost her income.

Holt’s launching a new book called “Unexpected Risk” in her “Phoenix Agency” series on February 28 and she invited 10 authors to write in that universe, with some specific guidelines Holt’s set. All the books will launch the same day to increase exposure — on Amazon’s Kindle.

The reality for many authors is that Amazon is an inescapable force in the publishing industry. And if Amazon were to launch a service similar to Kindle Worlds again, Holt would sign on in a heartbeat.

“I’d say ‘send me the contract right now,”‘ she said. “You have to go into it with the understanding that [Amazon is] the big dog. I got a lot out of it and I’m more successful now because of it. I was really sorry to see it end.”

The story of Amazon’s foray into fan fiction, and how it changed over the last few years, shows how many authors have to play by Amazon’s rules to make a living — and be subject to its whims in how it supports particular platforms or products.

It was good while it lasted….

Read it all at insider.com

10 Most Viewed TVWriter™ Posts of the Week – Jan. 20, 2020

Good morning! Welcome to another new week at TVWriter™, starting with our latest look at the most popular blog posts and resource pages during the  last week.

They are, in order:

PEOPLE’S PILOT 2019 Semi-Finalists!

‘The Following’ Season 4 was Cancelled by Fox Because the TV Series Became a Victim of Lazy Writing!

PEOPLE’S PILOT 2019 Writing Contest

How To Write The Perfect TV Series Review To Captivate Your Readers

Writing the Dreaded Outline

Corporal Punishment and Primetime TV

SPIDER-MAN UNLIMITED SECOND SEASON ARC

ENTERTAINMENT INDUSTRY NEWS AUDIO EDITION – 01/16/2020

8 Tips for Writing for Children’s TV Shows

How to Write a Script for an Animated Show

Big thanks to everybody for helping us have another terrific week at TVWriter™. Don’t forget to click above and read what you missed and re-read what you loved!

COMING NEXT WEEK – JANUARY 27th: PEOPLE’S PILOT 2019 FINALISTS! 

Herbie J Pilato Tells Us How to Write a Nonfiction Book that Sells – Part 2

EDITOR’S NOTE: TVWriter™’s legendary Contributing Editor Emeritus Herbie J Pilato shares the key to his nonfiction writing success. Yesterday we brought you the “Teaser.” Time now to enjoy the specifics of the adventure!


by Herbie J Pilato

  • The Introduction

The information in this section may sometimes mimic the cover letter that you or your agent may submit to the editor/publisher with the proposal. Here, the author offers a general summary of not only their idea but a summary of the proposal itself — all in not more than two pages (if that).

  • The Overview

This section takes the proposal a step further, delving deeper into the subject matter of the proposal while offering more technical details of the intended length of the book (how many pages, words), whatever licensing fees may be involved (if, per se, the book is a companion guide to a particular TV show or feature film), and the number of illustrations and photographs (which might also have to be licensed, depending on the subject of the book).

  • The Market

Facts and figures matter most here. Who do you see reading your book and why? Which interests groups, on or off social media? Delve into the market figures. Find out, record and display it all in the Market section of the proposal. A list of competing titles for your proposed book is also a good idea to list in this Market section.

  • Chapter Outlines

Two or three sentences should be presented in each chapter, in future-tense. That is to say, each Chapter Outline should begin as such:

This chapter will be about, as opposed to: This chapter is about. Save the present tense for the Sample Chapters section.

  • Sample Chapters

It’s best to prepare at least two or three full sample chapters, written in the present tense. This is where the author has to prove their writing weight in gold. Don’t try to fool anyone in any part of the book proposal, and definitely don’t try to fool anyone in the Sample Chapters section.

  • About the Author

Keep it simple, and not longer than two paragraphs. Explain who you are, and why you are the best person to write the book you have in mind. But again…keep it brief.

In general, when writing your book proposal, clarity is the most important factor to remember. Watch those typos. Agents and editors are looking for reasons to say no to your idea. Be smart, professional, clear, and factual, and give them every reason to say yes — even if it takes a 100+ rejections to find the right partnership to get your nonfiction book sold.

And one other thing:

Don’t give up.


Writer/producer Herbie J Pilato is the host of classic TV talk show THEN AGAIN WITH HERBIE J PILATO, now streaming on Amazon Prime, Founder and Executive Director of The Classic TV Preservation Society, and author of several classic TV companion books. He has been part of TVWriter™ for 20 years and is Contributing Editor Emeritus. Learn more about Herbie J HERE. This article first appeared in Medium.