Posts Tagged ‘Nikita’


What Should I Spec for 2016 – 4. June, 2015

Who is a glutton for punishment?



Why? Because I’m already thinking about shows I can spec next year. As the greatest limiting factor is the Warner Brothers list of approved dramas, here are the shows on their 2015 list that I’d consider for next year.

Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. (ABC) – Renewed for season 3

Halt & Catch Fire (AMC) – Season 2 just debuted

Orphan Black (BBC America) – Season 3 currently airing

Sleepy Hollow (Fox) – Renewed for season 3

The Blacklist (NBC) – Renewed for season 3

The Flash (CW) – Renewed for season 2

Arrow (CW) – Renewed for season 4

Gotham (Fox) – Renewed for season 2

Hannibal (NBC) – Season 3 airing this summer

Shows absent from this year’s list but that I think / hope will be on the 2016 one…

iZombie (CW) – Renewed for season 2

Daredevil (Netflix) – Renewed for season 2

Agent Carter (ABC) – Renewed for season 2

Better Call Saul (AMC) – Renewed for season 2

So, which to spec? I’m not looking to spec my favorite show. I’m looking to spec the show that I can knock out of the park. Therefore, let’s look at my newest spec and the 3 previous ones that have placed in contests / fellowships. They are…

The 100


The Americans




Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles


What do they have in common? All four features 1) bad ass female leads, 2) non-traditional families, and 3) violence/action. Two of the above feature spying/undercover work. Two are firmly science-fiction dealing with the post-apocalypse. Based off that, let’s narrow the list to shows that have at least three of the above elements. Those shows would be…

Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. – Bad ass females (May, Skye), non-traditional family (the team), tons of action, sci-fi (super heroes), spying/undercover work


Orphan Black – Bad ass females (the clones), some action (more suspense than action, really), non-traditional family (the clones, Fee, Ms. S., et al.), sci-fi


Agent Carter – Bad ass female, action, spying/undercover work


Sleepy Hollow – Bad ass female co-lead (Abbie), non-traditional family (Ichabod’s family + Abby), plenty of action, sci-fi, preventing the apocalypse


The Blacklist – Bad ass female co-lead (Elizabeth), lots of action, spying/undercover work

iZombie – Bad ass female lead (Liv), sci-fi, pending zombie apocalypse (kinda)


If I had to pick a show right now, it’d probably be iZombie or Agent Carter. I still have a viable Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. idea but it’s getting increasingly difficult to get excited about that show. I also harbor a deep desire to spec Orphan Black but it’s serialized within an inch of its life (but boy, do I love the difficult ones). Did I miss any shows? Did I get something wrong?

Posted in Writing

A Look Back at 2014 – 31. December, 2014

Was your 2014 a goddamn roller coaster ride? Mine was. There were lows, there were highs. One of which was finishing my third spec and making it to the Second Round of the Austin Film Festival Writers Conference (as well as making the semifinals of the Final Draft Big Break Contest).


For those keeping score, I’ve placed three times at Austin with specs for The Americans, Nikita, and Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles. To me, that’s definitive proof that I can write. Television is a good arena for me. Now I need to level up… but that’s for my next post. Let’s get to the fun. Let’s get to my “Favorite _____ of the Year”. Ready? Let’s do this!

Favorite Movie of the Year – Guardians of the Galaxy

Guardians of the Galaxy was pure fun, an unexpected joy. With this movie Marvel proves they can do just about anything and we’ll go see it.


Here’s to many more years of fostering good will amongst the fans.

Favorite Line from a Movie This Year – Snowpiercer

Favorite Album of the Year – Year of the Caprese by Cherub


Cherub was my discovery of 2014, my favorite live act of SXSW and their album is equally awesome. Go. Pick. It. Up.

Favorite Book of the Year – Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki & His Years of Pilgrimage by Haruki Murakami


I enjoyed the hell out of this book. Yes, I wanted to truncate the first third, loved the second third, and wanted to rewrite the final third but the language is so lush, so seductive, it’s irresistible.

Favorite Comic of the Year – Injustice: Gods Among Us

I’m not that familiar with the DCU — I grew up a Marvel kid — but the Injustice books are an awesome introduction to the characters.


Yes, it’s an alternate universe not beholden to company wide events but it’s such a great, heartfelt story that you won’t feel cheated. If you want to get into DC comics, this is the best introduction.

Favorite Game of the Year – Destiny


I know. Everyone hates the game. The acting is awful but it hooked me… for about 3 months straight, until the first DLC dropped. Plus we can thank them for this awesome music video.

Favorite Television Show of the Year – Hannibal

What ya cooking, Dr. Lecter?

What ya cooking, Dr. Lecter?

I loved the first season of Hannibal and I couldn’t fathom how the second season could get any better. But it did. It was freaking awesome. I’m very excited for the third season. But let me also say that over the Xmas break I discovered The 100.


How did I just discover this awesome show?

Favorite Animated Show of the Year – Rick and Morty


You must watch this phenomenal show. Need proof? The best thing about Rick and Morty is that it can have both DMX and Mazzy Star as part of their soundtrack.

And with that, I say adios to 2014.

Posted in Off-Topic

My Best of 2013 (It’s Late Because I Read 1,100 Comics) – 31. January, 2014

As I was writing, traveling and working throughout Christmas / the start of the new year, I’m very late to this conversation. After reading tons of lists about the best movies, books, games and comics (including one long, well written list), let me offer a few thoughts of my own.

Favorite MovieGravity


But honestly, I haven’t seen a lot of the must see movies. I haven’t seen 12 Years A Slave, Inside Llewyn Davis, The Wolf of Wall Street, American Hustle, Her, Captain Phillips, Dallas Buyers Club, Nebraska, Blue Jasmin, Frozen, Saving Mr. Banks, All is Lost… basically I haven’t seen anything good.

Favorite AlbumModern Vampires of the City by Vampire Weekend


I wrote a few year-end posts about music so I’ll only briefly mention that I also loved Neko Case, Hey Ocean, Chvrches, Annie, NIN, Franz Ferdinand, Haim, Tegan & Sara, and The Talking Heads.

Favorite BookLife by Keith Richards


Honestly, it was way overrated but I think it was the only book I finished. I started more than a handful but… now I feel terrible about myself. Maybe that’s why I’ve started 3 books this year: American Gods, Sex, Drugs & Cocoa Puffs, and The Empty Chair.

Favorite ComicHawkeye (and I haven’t even read the “pizza dog” issue yet)


HOLY S**T, I read over 1,100 comics last year (that’s why I only finished one book in 2013). I still haven’t read Saga, Mind MGMT, or East of West, but I really enjoyed Avengers, Nightwing, Bandette, Batman Beyond 2.0, Animal Man (more appreciated than liked), Batman, The Bunker, Captain Marvel (really loved some of the art), Daredevil, Prophet (so weird but awesome) and then there were all the Top Cow comics I read for the Talent Hunt. Of them, I’d say I dug Artifacts and the Magdalena stories most.

Favorite GameThe Last of Us


Hands down the best game of the year. I played the Hell out of Borderlands 2 but nothing lingers like The Last of Us.

Favorite Television ShowBreaking Bad


But I also loved Nikita (and the hot spec I wrote for it), Sleepy Hollow, Arrow, The Americans, The Blacklist, Homeland, Game of Thrones and Orphan Black (which will hopefully be my next spec).

Favorite Home Away From Home – Austin

I was there twice this year, I know where I like to stay, I have favorite places to eat, drink, shop, get groceries.  Now, if only I could meet a lady Austin-ite…


Posted in Off-Topic

A Look Back at 2013 – 31. December, 2013

This year, something amazing happened to the writer in me: he figured out who he wants to be and it all started with finishing my Nikita spec.


Upon finishing, I felt good about my spec but I didn’t put much stock in that feeling. I’ve written/shot/created so many things that I’ve been so proud of in the past but I could never get anyone that mattered (tastemakers, gatekeepers and buyers) to care. I no longer trusted my instincts.

But this little script turned that around. It got me to the semi-finals of a lot of contests, most importantly the NBC writing fellowship and the Austin Film Festival. Actually, this was the second time I made the semis at AFF but, typical me, I thought the first time was a fluke. Now that I had a second success with another TV spec (the first was for Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles), I could suss out a pattern. I figured out which facet of my writing might actually have commercial appeal. Better yet, I genuinely loved both shows and the genres/mediums (“mediums”? I’ll explain that tomorrow) I would be mining.

Going to Austin was another huge accomplishment. I met a ton of awesome peers and, for once, didn’t feel like a charlatan.

I actually feel good about what I’m writing, and I like feeling good about myself.

Posted in General

Not Bad Nikita – 18. October, 2013

Final Draft just announced the semifinalists for their Big Break contest and look at whose name I spotted.

Shameless Self Promotion

Shameless Self Promotion

So that makes a Second Round finish at the Austin Film Festival Teleplay Competition, a semifinalist with the NBC/Universal Writers on the Verge program and now this (a bit more context here).

I guess people are responding to my NIKITA script.  I’m doing something right.

[End humble brag]

Posted in Industry, Writing

Austin, I’m Back Sooner Than Expected – 12. October, 2013

“You *HAVE* to go!”

So said my buddy Ted while waiting in line for GRAVITY.

Gravity movie poster

BTW, see it in 3D, ATMOS, and, fuck it, D-Box too.

He said, “the people you meet over that one weekend, it would take you six months to do the same here in Los Angeles.”

And he’s right.


My NIKITA spec placed in the Second Round of the Austin Film Festival Teleplay Competition, got me to the semifinals of the NBC/Universal Writers on the Verge program, and got me to the quarterfinals of the Final Draft Big Break Television Contest (where I’m still in play for the semis).  I have a little bit of heat, so it only makes sense that I take this ember and see if I can start a fire.

So I’m going back to Austin earlier than expected.

I’m still figuring out my schedule, lodging, etc., but if you have any great tips, let me know!  Also, drop me a line if you’re attending.

2013 Austin Film Festival One Hour Spec Competition – 12. September, 2013

This year I wrote an hour long spec and I’m just starting to hear back from all the big fellowships and contests.  So I don’t go nuts from waiting, I made my first infographic (who doesn’t love their information in graphic form?  I know, right.).  Enjoy, and please feel free to suggest improvements.


TV Drama Specs

| Infographics

And as you’ve probably guessed, my spec is up there.  As for its fate, that’s for another post.