munchman: Media Bistro Cares About Writers

…so much that they’ve got a whole list of potential side jobs that won’t interfere with your calling.

Great Side Gigs for Journalists and Writers
Need a Plan B for your career? Give these jobs a try
By Amanda Ernst

When you think of alternative careers or side jobs a wordsmith could do, freelance reporting, blogging, writing, consulting or editing copy for any variety of industries come immediately to mind. But, beyond the obvious career moves, there are a whole slew of other fields that journalists can dabble in as side jobs or as a full-fledged career transition. Here are a few suggestions, and some former and current journalists who are doing them, to get you thinking about a new career direction….

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Oops, waittaminnit. Turns out there’s a slight problem here, in the very next sentence:

Yes, that’s right, starving writers everywhere. All you need to see these great gigs is $55/year, or, if you want to dig a little deeper and trust a little more, $89/2 years, and no, it doesn’t end there ‘cuz:

“Note: At the end of your term, we will automatically renew your subscription and charge your credit card…”

Wow, how wonderful/helpful/generous of you – asshats.

In words I’m pretty sure our BL (Beloved Leader) LB (Larry Brody) would approve of:

“Screw you.”

munchman

 

Comic Books Newbies Can Read?

by Larry Brody

What a concept!

Mike Gold’s bio says he’s from Chicago. And we all know that Chicagoans have a singular superpower: The power to offend – and often to terribly hurt others – with the truth.

So when he says there are some solid comic books out there that readers can turn to without having to know 70 years of continuity, I believe it. Can’t wait to try out the titles he recommends:

Mike Gold: The Great Comic Book Retro-Expansion

by Mike Gold

Gold Column Art 120627 Mike Gold: The Great Comic Book Retro ExpansionLast week I bitched and moaned about how we’ve turned our backs on comics that can be appreciated by readers of all ages in order to follow the money that kids ain’t got and some adults might have. I also tied this into continuity impenetrable to newcomers that is spread over about a hundred dollars’ worth of monthly product. I can be snotty that way.

In just the past couple of years, we have seensomething of a return to comics that can be enjoyed by readers young and old. Publishers can’t help the self-consciousness suffered by Baby Boomers and some Gen-Xers, but today’s new middle-agers were raised without much of the stigma us old folks suffered during the Wertham rage. So, I am now taking it upon myself to point out a few titles that work for a general audience that is fearless enough to read comic books on the bus, be it to work or to school.

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Gold goes on to name three titles that, as a guy who got his start with a letter published in Amazing Spider-Man back in 1964 (well, actually my first published work was poetry but no one cared), but hasn’t been able to read or follow them in years, I’m ordering right now:

  • Zorro Rides Again
  • Savage Dragon
  • Batman Beyond Unlimited
If you try any of these let me know what you think. I’ll do the same.

P. Diddy Wouldn’t Know a B-Flat if It Hit Him

by Larry Brody

Quincy and Diddy enjoy their spoils

For reasons known only to the Great God of Irony, I’ve been good – I mean, really good – at two things over the years. Writing TV and playing the drums.

The irony of it being that both of those are skills that every single person in the universe believes he or she also has mastered…or could with, like, 45 minutes of fun masquerading as work.

So I gave up the professional writer’s stone face and laughed out loud at the following:

Quincy Jones Dings P. Diddy at Spotify Launch: ‘He Couldn’t Recognize a B-Flat’

By Sharon Waxman
Spotify brought producer Quincy Jones to launch their new app featuring artist-curated playlists on Tuesday, but the music legend couldn’t resist dinging P. Diddy for being a music illiterate while touting the music technology.

“P. Diddy wouldn’t know a B-flat” if it hit him, said Jones in a conversation with musician Bruno Mars to mark the occasion of the app launch. “P. Diddy has a doctorate in marketing…. He’s got clothes companies and Ciroc vodka.”

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FTR: My older son went to school with one of Quincy’s daughters. She’s a sitcom star now. He’s a producer of BigMedia Films You’ve Actually Seen. Most people probably think they could do that too, if they just had another 45 minutes to mess around.

They can’t.

Show business is hard, gang. Most of the people who don’t “make it” are so amazingly talented and skilled that your skulls would explode if you watched them do their thing. Those who do make it have all that plus a little something called discipline,  which in this context is the ability to work not merely until they drop but after they’ve dropped as well. Coupled with an affability that would make the kindliest old grandma look like Dr. Evil.

(Yes, it’s true – that affability often is the first thing to go after the rocket to stardom ensconces Ms./Mr. Big Talent in the night sky.)

Both B. Diddy and Quincy Jones know what they’re doing. They just do different things. If you want to succeed, play it smart: Learn ’em all.

What Writers Can Learn from Saving Hope (Part I)

Kathy Fuller is a hell of a writer.  She’s the best-selling author of over twenty novels and novellas, in addition to several published articles. Her publishers include Tyndale, Avalon, Adams Media, and Thomas Nelson.  TVWriter™ is proud to present her here and hopes she forgives us for just plain being us and graces the site with her presence again and again. (Well, until she finishes this 3-part series for sure.)

by Kathy Fuller

This summer NBC picked up the Canadian show Saving Hope and shoved it into its Thursday night line-up. Remember when Thursdays used to be must watch TV on NBC? Me either. I’ve had my fill of hospital dramas, but I tuned in for one reason: Michael Shanks. However, my love admiration of Shanks only goes so far. Saving Hope is riddled with basic writing errors—and don’t get me started on the ridiculous overuse of lens flares.

So what can writers learn from a show that’s pretty much a writing failure? Plenty.

Mistake #1: Saving or Raising?

Titles are important. They convey the show’s subject matter. Take Criminal Minds. Those two words tell you the premise: criminals and their psychology. Titles can also link to a show’s theme, such as Parenthood. These titles are understandable, relatable (for the most part) and in today’s current TV landscape, unique. Are they brilliantly unique? No, but they aren’t similar to what’s currently on the tube.

There’s nothing wrong with Saving Hope as a title per se. It’s a little too clever in that the hospital is named Hope-Zion and doctors usually save people.  But there’s a really good show currently airing called Raising Hope. I think I googled Michael Shanks/Raising Hope about five times before I realized he’s not on Raising Hope. At first I thought I was a moron for getting the two mixed up, but I soon discovered I wasn’t the only one confused.

When it comes to writing, nothing is too precious that it can’t be changed, adapted, deleted, or annihilated when necessary. I understand why the producers are clinging to this ah-mazing title that ties in so neatly with the show. But when viewers get the two titles confused, ah-mazing becomes annoying.

Want your show to stand out in the crowded TV landscape? Choose a simple, creative, original title that reflects the core topic, captures audience attention, and makes people want to tune in. Even if it’s the bestest title ever, if its going to cause confusion, come up with something else.

Later this week: Don’t just stand there, do something!

munchman: I Have a Dream

Just once – once! – I’d like to see a big corpse corp hire somebody who entertains people to a “top entertainment post.” You know, like hiring a creative person to be a “creative executive.”

But that would be silly, no?

Microsoft In Talks With Nancy Tellem For Top Entertainment Post

by NELLIE ANDREEVA

EXCLUSIVE: Microsoft is taking a major step towards growing its entertainment footprint. I’ve learned that the software giant is in talks with former top CBS TV executive and now CBS consultant Nancy Tellem for a high level post, in which she would lead Microsoft’s expanded efforts in entertainment. Details on the position are still sketchy as I hear negotiations are still in early stages and an agreement is probably several weeks away, but it is believed to be a broad position overseeing creative and business partnerships as well as the production of original content across Microsoft platforms, including the flagship Xbox Live game and video service.

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munchman