When Netflix first really started running and doing a lot of reruns and stuff like that — and I think it’s still true — Gray’s Anatomy tends to fall on the top of the viewing of Netflix because people fell in love with those characters. They want to see them succeed. They want to watch people — a character that’s interesting is someone who wants to be better at what they do for interesting reasons. Walter White wanted to be better at what he did for interesting — they were bad reasons but they were interesting right? The Gray’s Anatomy doctors want to be the best doctors. Whether it’s because they have a competitive streak and they have to be better than everybody else — which is kind of a bad reason put to a good use right or because, in that case, Meredith Gray was trying to live up to the reputation of her mother and that’s something you’ll probably never do because she was a groundbreaking person. So then she had the confidence issue and all that which made us love her even though she could be a real pain in the butt sometimes. So you have to have a character who is moving toward learning something that you would like other people to learn. I think if you start there you will invent something interesting.
It’s always fun to sit down with students and share stories about entering the television industry and how things work at all stages and I had that opportunity the other day.
Daniela Torres, a just-graduated (Congratulations!) student of the Columbia College Semester in LA program asked me to guest on a podcast she had recently begun hosting with another college student she met during her internship (good example of networking in action!).
We could have talked all morning (the benefit of a 3 hour class session) but we held it to about an hour and fifteen minutes or so. Hopefully, along the way I answered some questions you might have about how the business works. So often it amounts to working hard at being a better writer and gathering a group of other talented, hard-working people around you so you can all rise together.
Dr. Rosanne Welch is a television writer with credits that include Beverly Hills 90210, Picket Fences, ABCNEWS: Nightline and Touched by an Angel. She also teaches Television Writing and the Art of Film at San Jose State University.
Rosanne discusses what made shows like Beverly Hills 90210 compelling, what to do and not to do when attempting to pitch a show to broadcast or streaming, what most young writers neglect in their writing process, and much more!
The Courier Thirteen Podcast is available on YouTube, Spotify, Apple Podcasts, SoundCloud, and Audible.