Literature imitating TV imitating literature.
I turned from a movie lover to a series lover. It all began with my wife: she wanted to watch all seasons of GILMORE GIRLS and since we just had one TV set, I watched along with her. Know what? I really digged GG — good story well told, great and plausible characters. With that we were hooked on series, but we didn’t really know it at that time.
Shortly after GG we started watching PRISON BREAK and soon fell in love with it too, so we ended up binge watching it, after that we watched HEROES, though we ended up not watching all of it since seasons 2 really sucked.
We let the series be for a while, but after a couple of months we started watching THE WALKING DEAD and we were addicts again.
I came home with HOMELAND (no pun intended), which my wife didn’t find her path into and the same goes for BREAKING BAD, which meant that I didn’t see it as well. But, hey, the HOUSE OF CARDS found us and we binge watched the whole thing in 3 weekends, I think. We binged on GAME OF THRONES, MODERN FAMILY and NEW GIRL.
Now, we really feel that good ol’ movies with 90 minutes of storytelling aren’t that attractive anymore — movies, compared to series, feel strangely flat and more of a sketch of an idea. No wonder that Hollywood script are turning their backs on the old moves to tell their stories in a way more fleshed out style, giving the characters and the story so much more complexity.
The same is now true for books. Now, serialized fiction is nothing new, we all know pulp fiction. But what I’m talking about is different.
I recently discovered something called THE BEAM. It is set in the distant future and is about politics, human relationships, technology and an internet on steroids. I first read “The Beam, Epsiode 1" — after finishing it, I instantly bought the whole season. After finishing this, I bought the 2nd season.
Noticed something? Yeah, that’s right, they ship their story in seasons, just like TV series are rolled out. Interesting, huh? What’s more interesting, is that the authors (yes, plural!) are working like an author team in Hollywood — one of them has an weird idea, together they give it legs, one of them builds the world and rough storyline, the other author fleshes out the season in detail.
With that kind of division of labor they are incredibly productive and together with another colleague, they are able to crank different series like mad. We’re talking about another sci fi series (WHITE SPACE), which sounds awesome, an odd western series with a unicorn (duh?), a horror series, to name just a few.
Also, they let the interested audience know, exactly HOW they work, show all the stuff und nuts and bolts in a book called FICTION UNBOXED.
I am sold to the whole idea, the storylines I read are very interesting (WHITE SPACE, THE BEAM, YESTERDAYS GONE and the novel AXIS OF AARON) — I am hooked, sold and will definitely read most their stuff.
15 years before, all this wouldn’t be possible. But all the self publishing revolution taking place, it is now easy as a pie for everyone to publish novels, story series, etc.
Exciting times, aren’t they?