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So I've been thinking about how I'd do an audio drama again, and let me start with some standard disclaimers: this isn't a reaction to how anyone else does it past or present, or a swipe at anyone, nor did I have anyone in mind when I started thinking about it -- other than Big Finish, who in fact inspired a fair amount of the thinking in a positive way, so good for them.So. Let us assume that I had a concept, and that it was for an indefinitely running audio program. Let us also assume that I do not have an established professional business -- so this at least starts as an amateur model. Here is what I would do, with the goal of producing a generally strong audio show, capitalizing on my strengths and papering over my weaknesses:I would appoint myself as producer and show runner, head writer, whatever you want to call it. The former means that I would provide resources; it doesn't mean that I'd lift a finger otherwise -- this will have plenty of jobs, although let's call them roles, and I might well fill some of them as well, but producer means I provide resources. Head writer means that I write some of the episodes, and that other people write some of the episodes, collaboratively or solo, except to the extent they are all collaborating with me, if you see what I mean. Show runner's a concept fandom's pretty solid on right now, I suppose, except how they appear to sometimes think it means "irreplaceable Messiah" which, well, getting off topic.Every episode would have a different director (or audio engineer, or whatever you choose to call it) than the previous. Due to how hard it is to find people willing to put the time into this that have any business doing so, it'd probably be a few people, rotating, but doesn't matter -- the point is that we want production to overlap to avoid cascade schedule failure, and also we avoid killing the directors (unless we strangle them for being difficult, but... separate topic.) Does this impact consistency? Perhaps, but hello, I'm the producer and I'm involved in the final edits.Side thought: It would be useful if the show was actually episodic enough that I could conceivably have some inventory episodes for when everything falls over. Got that one from the comics industry. Untold tales, whatever. It'd depend on the nature of the show.As I say, I'd farm out some scripts -- the larger plot would be mine (and I'd surely write some of the scripts) but I'd take pitches for "i want to write an episode about this" and then we'd work on the shopping list of what needs to be in it. When I was script proofing for Darker Projects' Doctor Who, I believe this is more or less what they were doing. (I think they only had the one director, though.) And yes, a script editor would be pretty important here. Even folks who have a good notion and write acceptable dialogue and such can get tied up in some of the peculiarities of audio -- you can't just see where someone is now, you need to say names more, etc etc.Actors would make an agreement when cast as to how long they had to get first recordings of lines recorded and turned in. It would not be long. Because we record in isolation, not only from the other actors (which some of the big boys like Big Finish do, by the way) but also from any production staff, it's best to just expect that the first batch of lines won't be the last. There will be retakes. Also, giving people too long to do it basically ensures they'll forget about it and will do it at the last second anyway, with few exceptions. Anyway. Relevantly, main cast would be kept reasonable. Scenes with more than 3 people in them would be rare. The last time I wrote for audio, the average number of characters in a given episode was 8, including the tiniest one-line bit parts. The main cast consisted of 4 people plus a couple of regularly recurring antagonists. So like that.Music would be very minimalist. And scored for the episode. No, I'm serious. The aforementioned director wouldn't have to deal with it.Anyway... that's how I'd do it. One show, lots of people involved (any or all of the above could well have assistants, but that's up to them to work out; we'd of course need to know for credit purposes), pursuing a high quality result with a regular release schedule. If it ever grew from there, it'd be shows with their own show runners and me as producer -- we'd both be involved in final edits with the director, but my part would just be to say "whoa, you can't do that" or "this doesn't sound good enough" or, hopefully most of the time, "sounds great, if the show runner's happy I'm happy."The aforementioned thinking out loud should not be construed as an intent to ever do any of it. The ideas are stolen with both hands from existing houses, TV, comics... pretty much any serial media I've had contact with and learned anything about how they're organized. And personal experience, such as it is, of course.There, now it's out of my head. I may edit this based on later thoughts or discussions, but then again, I may not.
And that’s a wrap for series 7. Join Deb, Erika, Liz, and Lynne as we discuss whether the season closer was everything we hoped it could be or left us feeling slightly uncomfortable. Were the fans properly serviced? Was the last climax really a climax? Was the “reward” video of Matt Smith and David Tennant really much of a reward? We cover all this and more.^EAlso covered:Series 8 is a thing! And Matt Smith will be in it!All the Doctor Who DVDs!Daemons action figure set available for pre-order!Hello Sweetie Podcast!Download or listen now (runtime 1:05:59)
Am I the only one who finds it hilarious that Amazon prohibits porn, violence, and presumably incest in VAMPIRE DIARIES fic?
Amazon has decided to monetize fan fiction. Not fucking kidding:
Get ready for Kindle Worlds, a place for you to publish fan fiction inspired by popular books, shows, movies, comics, music, and games. With Kindle Worlds, you can write new stories based on featured Worlds, engage an audience of readers, and earn royalties. Amazon Publishing has secured licenses from Warner Bros. for Gossip Girl, Pretty Little Liars, and The Vampire Diaries, with licenses for more Worlds on the way.
The weird thing is what happens to that comfortable space that separated canonical from non-canonical. Like, one assumes that the fan-fic remains officially non-canonical — and yet, people are paying for it...it still grants it a kind of territory in the canonical space. Someone might read Book 3...and say, “But this doesn’t refer to that time when she time-traveled back to the Old West in that novella, Booby Nuthatch.” And you’re like, “That wasn’t real, though, someone else wrote that.” But then they say: “I PAID FOR IT SO IT FELT REAL TO ME”...That’s a pretty serious shift in authorship and authenticity.
A lot of people have asked me for my thoughts on Kindle Worlds, since I (and my company!) have a stated interest in this kind of thing.For those of you coming in midway through this story, Amazon has just announced that they'll be publishing fanfiction for Gossip Girl, Pretty Little Liars, and The Vampire Diaries, allowing the fic to be sold for money. The author will receive 35% of net revenue (for works of 10,000+ words) and royalties (unspecified) will be payed to the rightsholder of the fictional universe.I think a lot of people have a kneejerk reaction to this which is strongly negative—"Jesus Christ, it's FanLib all over again!" People also have the expectation that it will fail, that fans are not interested in selling their works. I don't think that all that negativity is entirely justified. Here's why:
What did you just finish reading?I finished Anna Cowan's Untamed. Review copy, so I'll save it for review.Skimmed Iron Man 3 Prelude, aka What Jim Rhodes Was Doing During The Avengers.There is also a mostly pointless comics retelling of IM2; only "mostly" because it is nice to see Tony customizing War Machine for Rhodey and Rhodey's first flight, which are major plot holes in the movie. On the plus side, there is also a lot less Vanko and Hammer than the movie, but on the minus side, there is a lot less RDJ.It also includes the first issue of Iron Man: Extremis, which I assume is massively confusing for people not already familiar with the comicsverse. I often recommend Extremis as an introductory work, but including one chapter in a book focused on the Cinematic Universe, without any prior indication that this is from a different continuity, is probably not the best way to pitch it.Milestone's Static series is a lot less interesting when Dwayne McDuffie isn't writing it. There is an After School Special about black anti-Semitism/white Jews benefiting from racism as an institution. I have just hit the storyline where one of Virgil's friends comes out as gay and the other boys in the friends group do not react well. All the social justice storylines are so clunky and well-meant! I cannot help but be fond of them.What are you currently reading?Still slogging through Kerry Greenwood's Medea. Very much a war of the sexes book.What are you planning to read next?I need to reread "A Cyborg Manifesto." If the latest Wiscon Chronicles volume is out in ebook, I'll probably read it on the plane ride home, because I usually do.
Saves you guys from a lot of whinging. Actually, I am wondering if everyone/anyone is having a problem where everything LJ related takes 900 years to load. I am stuck with Firefox at home (I couldn't figure out how to install Chrome on Ubuntu and every time I think to take the steps to learn how, I am at work) and at work (b/c it's that or IE and no), and seriously, the site is partying like it's 1999. Half the time, it will pop in with a "You Want to Restore Previous Draft" somewhere in the middle of me composing, so I tend to accrue a patchwork of whatever I was typing the last three times before I gave up. Commenting has become a beast as well, especially accessing my own posts. It takes a few minutes so show comments, which makes it difficult to respond. Ten years ago, these problems wouldn't have been troubling at all, which is kind of funny.
A roommate had to drop out at the last minute, leaving me with an open bed in the Concourse for 1-2 people for Thursday-Sunday nights. The remaining two of us in the room are nonsmoking women. I own cats. We are okay sharing space with people of any gender. Comment here or e-mail elenargleason at gmail if you are interested.
Amazon announced Kindle Worlds today, describing it as “the first commercial publishing platform that will enable any writer to create fan fiction based on a range of original stories and characters and earn royalties for doing so.”
I didn’t know this was coming, but I’m not surprised, exactly. Amazon has been a very successful business, and if they see a potentially profitable area they can branch out into, they’re gonna do it.
I found out about this through Chuck Wendig’s post here, wherein he talks about the press release and proceeds to fragment his own brain into tiny, shiny pieces.
I’m still digesting and processing this, and I suspect some of it will boil down to having to wait to see how it all plays out. But some of my initial reactions are…
I’m sure there will be many, many discussions and arguments about this, and I have no idea how it will all play out or whether or not it will work. But I do think it’s a fascinating step in the ongoing evolution of the industry.
Mirrored from Jim C. Hines.
And our entire family will be in attendance.
This WisCon is also the official launch for Queers Dig Time Lords!
Thus, I have a very light schedule in deference to Michael's book launch.
It really is a splendid book. I got to read the manuscript. (And you should totally come to the QDTL/Outer Alliance party on Friday night. Trust me on this.)
My one panel:
Monday 1o:00-11:15 am, Conference 5
How to Edit an Anthology
Anthology editors discuss the nuts and bolts of editing an anthology. From finding a publisher, to picking the stories, to writing up contracts, to securing reprint rights from estates, to cover design, to TOC order, to… to everything! Well, everything that fits into 75 minutes anyway.
James Frenkel, Philip Kaveny, Brit Mandelo, Lynne M. Thomas
I am also participating in the SignOut immediately afterwards.
Otherwise, I will be underfoot, attending readings, and basking in the glow of Michael's first book launch. <3
Thanks to the generosity of friends who have volunteered to help with Caitlin's care in the evenings so that Michael and I can attend social time. They made attending WisCon possible this year, and we love them.