Saturday, November 1, 2014

Thinking Like a Film Studio

Scott D. Parker

Earlier this week, Marvel announced its slate of movies and titles for the next few years. It's got the biggies (Avengers 3 and 4 (?), Guardians of the Galaxy 2), the interesting ones (Doctor Strange, Captain Marvel), and the ones you'd never thought you'd see (Black Panther, Inhumans). It's incredibly ambitious and I am looking forward to them all.

That got me thinking about my own production schedule so I did a little exercise. I got an 11x17 piece of paper and made a grid. Across the top, I wrote the twelve months. For the rows, I wrote the years 2015 to 2018. Then, in pencil, I began thinking like a studio executive and looking at those 48 months and where certain books would be released.

I have, to date, six completed manuscripts scattered over four franchises. It's really fun to plan out a potential schedule for my various series. Some of the franchises will likely stay as novels and they will likely serve as tentpoles for a given year. Then, the smaller novellas and/or short stories will fill out the rest of the slots. Thinking like a studio. I like it.

Of course, the next thing I did was to make a spreadsheet with all the tasks associated with producing a finished ebook. I wrote this list across the top of a separate piece of 11x17 paper. I actually ran out of room and had to start another sheet. Wow. There's a lot to do.

Note: I’ll be doing a Na--Novella--WriMo challenge this month, so I don’t have to abide by the 1,667/day word count, but I do intend to finish it this this month. This novella is part of a strategy I’m using to get more shorter, novella-length works out in the next few years. These will be interspersed by longer, full-length novels. We'll see how this plays out.

Novellas. How many of y'all write them?

And regular NaNoWriMo: how many of y'all are participating? I've written 50,000 words in a month so I know I can do it. It does take a lot of perseverance, but it's doable. Cheers to everyone!

1 comment:

David Cranmer said...

I've said this quite a bit over the last few years but I wish more writers would stick to novellas. So many want to Stephen King bloat their manuscripts but they just can't pull it off. Heck sometimes the great master can't either. And your schedule seems ambitious but doable, Scott. Good luck!