TV success is all about great stories & characters

The best writing teachers are doers first and teachers second. And we at TVWriter™ like what this article has to say about what Katie Torpey does:

Katie Torpeyby Linda Tuccio-Koonz

Some people feel guilty about watching television.

Not Katie Torpey.

For her, it’s research.

“Every fall I DVR the pilot episodes for the new series that intrigue me, and I watch them to see if I get pulled in,” she said. “I watch as a writer to see what works and what doesn’t — what they did right and what they didn’t deliver.”

Torpey, 45, is a television and film screenwriter. Though busy with several of her own projects, she also teaches workshops on screenwriting at the Ridgefield Playhouse. One of her eight-week workshops on TV writing starts Tuesday, Sept. 30.

Leslie Dean, an interior designer in Wilton, signed up for it. Dean said she’s had an idea for a sitcom involving a family for quite a while and wants to learn how to develop it.

“I really admire the writing on `Modern Family,’ ” Dean said. “That show makes me laugh every time I see it.”

Torpey’s experience in the industry has given her insight into the world her students want to learn about. She’s written movies such as “The Perfect Man,” starring Hilary Duff, Heather Locklear and Chris Noth, and she was a lead writer on Disney’s “Power Rangers.”

She also co-created “Mother Up!” — an animated show about motherhood starring Eva Longoria; it premiered on Hulu in January. Her latest feature film is in preproduction with Sony Pictures and slated to shoot in January 2015.

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