12 Days of Gratitude – Ned

Ned Hickson

I’d like to introduce you to my friend Ned, perhaps the greatest man that I have never met…well, not in person or on the phone at any rate.

A great wit in a world stuck in the Witless Protection Program, Ned is a loving father, husband and friend who not only writes heartfelt humour but also gives of his time to protect his community as a volunteer firefighter. And yet, for as much as Ned gives, you are never left in doubt that he has time and energy for you.

I look forward to the day Ned and I finally meet in person…and likely discover we hate each other’s guts.

P.S. You can follow Ned’s insane perspectives on life on his blog: Humor at the Speed of Life (also the name of his book, available on Amazon)

(Part Six of my 12 Days of Gratitude…because the rest of the news sucks)

Kid Lit publisher/illustrator needed

Looking for recommendations for a Kid Lit publisher for a new story I have written but do not yet have illustrated. Story is aimed at 3- to 5-year-olds.

Alternatively, looking for an illustrator who is used to working for no cash and can work with me on this to find a publisher.

In my head, the imagery for the story could be along the lines of any of the books in the image below, but I am open to other styles as well…this is just what resonates in my head.

In my head, these styles could work with my story, but remaining open to other ideas!

In my head, these styles could work with my story, but remaining open to other ideas!

Ultimately, I will go to the usual sources for these types of things, but thought I would check with my loving, supportive and talented social network to lend a hand, an ear, an eye…whatever you’ve got, really.

Any recommendations or thoughts, Universe?

Feel free to DM me…happy to share the story with people….thanks…Randy

10 Steps to Writing a Pilot That Sells

No, no! Not that kind of pilot. Although, cute photo. (Image used without permission)

No, no! Not that kind of pilot. Although, cute photo. (Image used without permission)

1) Watch a lot of television; especially stuff you don’t like or think is bad. This will establish the belief within you that you could write something at least that bad and still get it on the air.

2) Conceptualize a show that combines one of your siblings or cousins, the second job you ever had, and a famous moment in history. Every idea after this will sound entirely plausible; and hell, this might actually work as a sitcom.

3) Conceptualize an idea that is morally offensive to you and then see if it was one of the shows in Step 1. If not, then the market is ripe for the picking.

4) Describe the absolute worst day of your life, a day when everything went wrong. Then switch one of the disastrous elements. Then, switch another element. Do this 10 more times. Season One!

If you can’t create 13 variants, your day wasn’t that bad and your life is too good for you to be writing for television. Go write greeting cards.

5) Grab a copy of Bulfinch’s Mythology and reset all of the stories in modern-day Seattle or the smallest town you’ve ever visited. Warning: Brace for complaints that it’s a rehash of Dallas or Friday Night Lights.

6) Grab a copy of Bulfinch’s Mythology and do not reset the stories. Hell, if it worked for The Borgias and The Tudors, it might work here. Call it The Olympians.

7) Start with Episode Two, because pilots suck and you’ll never want to show it to anyone. You need to know/believe your idea works.

8) No matter what your current idea is, when you go to pitch it and you think you’re losing your audience, suddenly reveal “And the protagonist is a ghost!” Vampire, werewolf and zombie are equally acceptable.

9) Stop reading advice on writing a successful pilot and just write your story, already. There is no telling why someone in a suit will get excited by your story, but I can guarantee they won’t if you’re not.

10) If all else fails, generate a top-ten list of ways to write a pilot that will sell and use it as the basis of a book you will later turn into a sitcom.