The Team Writing for Television students are now into the 8th week of the process of creating a long running television series. All 9 teams have chosen their Series Idea, the Series Arcs are being developed, the individual Episodes allocated, and the Characters and their arcs are starting to crystallize. Things are going so well (famous last words), that I am now actively seeking clarification on what the Copywright situation is for Artifacts created through Assessed Modules at the UWS.
The TWFTV Blackboard Website Blog has been a hive of activity since last week. All told, 152 hits from 45 separate contributors reporting on the developments within the individual teams. The teams meet physically once a week in class where they will have a lecture on some theoretical aspect of Team Writing For The Screen , and then spend the rest of the class operating as separate powerhousing teams of writers. An allocated tutor , either myself, John Quinn or Dr Gill Jamieson operates as a Series Runner to sort out any developmental problems which may emerge.
Out of class, the teams can virtually communicate online with one another through the Blackboard Group Pages discussion boards, and also through the dedicated messaging service, Wimba. They then allocate a scribe who reports back on progress once a week to all their colleagues on the class Blog.
After the teams have gone through the process of defining all aspects of their Long Running Series Idea, they create their own strategy for marketing it. The core of this strategy will be contained in the Pitching Document which they jointly create online through their teams Published WIKI. This will then form the basis of the team pitch which this year will be delivered to Kate Croft of Shed Productions and Mike Ellen, Script Exec at BBC on the 19th of April.
Using a Team WIKI to deliver their final Pitching Document gives us the opportunity of assessing each individual team member in terms of the quantity and quality of their contributions, thereby obviating a major issue one always comes up against when assessing team work ” It’s not fair, I did more work than HE did”. This way we are able to accurately judge exactly who did what and when. There will be no hiding place!
Once the pitching is over, it will be up to each individual team member to write a full episode of the projected series which fits in with the Series and Character Arcs. They feedback their episode in draft from to their individual tutors through their own shared ePortfolio. Thus we will have a fully integrated, online developmental process going on from the initial weekly team meetings, through the Blog, the Discussion Boards, Wimba, and ePortfolio,
I’ll keep you up to speed with how the process is developing. Its worth noting that we started off the class with less than 2% of students actually having created an individual ePortfolio, to the point now where 82% of the class has successfully created one.
Onward and upward.