Breaking Bad had almost 3 million viewers by season five. Sure there’s a number of contributing factors to its enormous success and one of those defining factors is its gripping storyline and complex characters. There are a lot of lessons on successful writing that you can take away from these popular TV shows. Here I've listed the most prominent from a few of my favourites:
What I learnt from Breaking Bad (SPOILER ALERT)
What I learnt from Parks and Recreation
What I learnt from New Girl
What I learnt from American Horror Story
Fight to write or protect your characters.
Anti heroes are more fun to write as they are unpredictable, flawed, dark, and weird with skewed morality. Give these characters the space to do something and it could go anywhere.
What I learnt from watching too much TV
Ideas come from real life. Both Breaking Bad and Dexter were born out of ideas inspired by an article and Parks and Recreation came about because Amy Poehler and colleagues were inspired by global issues, such as the global financial crisis.
Screenwriting is about making precise decisions. Screenwriters must expect their words to be workshopped on and that their original creation is no longer their own.
Overall, high concept sells.
‘I see the story and then cut out the parts of the story that aren’t in the paper’, Papercutting artist Béatrice Coron.