Writing Classes

TV writing classes I’m teaching for the UCLA Extension Writers’ Program:

FALL 2021:

One-Hour TV Intensive III and One-Hour TV Intensive IV (SCRIPT X 422.3N and X 422.4N)

(Formerly known as “One-Hour TV Pilot Script Writing in a Month: Parts I and II”)

Each is an advanced remote-instruction workshop that meets online via Zoom for three hours on five consecutive Monday and Tuesday evenings.
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Intensive III: Come up with an idea for a one-hour dramatic TV series, develop the premise, franchise, and format, ‘break’ the first episode (pilot) story, outline the pilot, and write the first 10 pages of a rough ‘zero draft’ pilot teleplay! Ten class meetings: Mondays and Tuesdays from September 20 to October 19, 2021, 6:00pm to 9:00pm Pacific time. Enrollment details for Intensive III are at this link. ENROLLMENT IS NOW OPEN!

Intensive IV: Continue writing pages and complete a zero draft teleplay of your pilot and also develop a series ‘pitch document’ (aka “series bible” or “series format”) as well as a three-minute verbal pitch for your series! Ten class meetings: Mondays and Tuesdays from October 25 to November 23, 2021, 6:00pm to 9:00pm Pacific time. Enrollment details for Intensive IV are at this link. ENROLLMENT IS NOW OPEN!

Note: These pilot writing courses are part of the UCLA Extension Writers’ Program, which specifies these prerequisites for enrollment:

Prerequisites for Intensive III: “SCRIPT X 421.3 One-Hour TV I and SCRIPT X 421.4 One-Hour TV II; or equivalent, or department approval.”

Prerequisites for Intensive IV: “SCRIPT X 422.3N One-Hour TV Intensive III; SCRIPT X 422.3 One-Hour TV III; or equivalent, or department approval.”

Note that “department approval” doesn’t mean my approval; it means UCLA Extension’s approval. I highly recommend contacting a Writers’ Program representative (hours: Monday through Friday, 8am-5pm Pacific time) by calling 310-825-9415 or emailing writers@uclaextension.edu. They’re very friendly and helpful folks who can give you much better guidance than I can.

But here are my thoughts: These pilot courses are intensive workshops that assume that each student already has some basic familiarity with television writing. In the prerequisite “One-Hour TV I & II” courses, students are introduced to the TV writing process — pitching, group brainstorming, “breaking the story,” beat sheets, outlines, teleplay formatting, and so forth — and each student comes up with a story and writes a teleplay for an existing TV series.

The pilot courses III & IV presume that students have had at least a little “prior experience” in screenwriting so that they don’t need to spend a lot of class time on the “basics” but can instead quickly jump right in and create original series ideas and develop them into pilots.

I’d say that if you’re just starting out and have never written anything in screenplay format and aren’t even all that familiar with what a script looks like, then these probably aren’t the courses for you… and I’d recommend the “One-Hour TV I” course as a better way of getting your feet wet.

But if you think you’re ready for a fun, fast-moving, positive, collaborative, creative intensive in TV Pilot writing, please do contact a Writers’ Program rep and see if Intensives III and IV are Right for You!

All classes provide notes, feedback, and help on students’ works-in-progress in a constructive and supportive workshop setting that mimics the freewheeling creative collaboration of a professional TV writers’ room, whiteboards and all.

Questions? Email me: