What to Spec, What to Spec - Complications Ensue
Complications Ensue:
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Thursday, March 18, 2010

People always ask me what to spec. In general I think the best thing is to call a couple of lit agents' assistants and ask them, but an aspiring TV writer named Alex Freedman has cross-referenced several blogs, sites, social networks, and other sources, to come up with a breakdown of the "speccability" of over fifty shows (dramas and comedies) for 2010, including sample scripts for each. It's his judgement, but he's done his homework, asking his
staffed writer acquaintances, major writing blogs and sites, as well as combing through several social networks (such as Twitter), in search of what people were actually speccing. I then studied ratings and popularity for each show, as well as their level of serialization, to determine the potential "longevity" of a spec.

If you're writing a new spec, check out his links for comedy specs and drama specs.


Thanks so much for posting this! I've been having a hard time deciding which show to write a spec for, and this gave me a lot of ideas.

By Blogger RamblingHutch, at 1:07 PM  

Surprised at the high ratings for Parks and Recreation, United States of Tara, as they are only in their second seasons. I thought the rule used to be, not too new but not too old?

Also, Community is still in its first season and it has a high rating.

I don't understand Hollywood :)

By Blogger Jud, at 6:48 AM  

@Jud: You could email him and ask him to explain those ratings. Normally you're not supposed to spec anything in its first seasons before it's picked up. But the cycle seems to be getting faster.

By Blogger Alex Epstein, at 7:40 AM  

This is a super-helpful link, Alex. Thanks!

@Jud Community just got picked up for a second season, which probably explains its rating.

I'm tickled to have my Party Down spec validated - I was worried the show was too obscure. Of course, I still have to work around the problem of having used Constance (the Jane Lynch character)...

By Blogger CJ at Creating a Comic, at 12:59 PM  

Good old fashioned THANK YOU! for this info.


By Blogger Victoria D., at 5:01 PM  

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