Updates from Frederick Smith, former Detroiter living in Los Angeles, and author of Down For Whatever (July2005) and Right Side of the Wrong Bed (December 2007).
Monday, August 15, 2005
How Dallas Kicked Off My Writing Aspirations.
When I was a kid, I used to love the TV show Dallas. In fact, I looked forward to Fridays not just because there would be no more school on the weekend, but I looked forward to my Friday night date with the Ewing family.
Of course I was saddeded by the death, yet another lung cancer death or illness announced last week, of Barbara Bel Geddes, who portrayed the matriarch of the family, Miss Ellie (pictured center sitting). (On a side note, if you're a smoker, lung cancer is no joke... and I imagine not a fun way to spend your last days... try to quit if you can.)
I was such a Dallas fan, that I wrote a letter once to the executive producers, Philip Capice and Leonard Katzman (see what a dork I was... I knew which producers to write!) giving them my feedback on how they could make the show (which had started to wane in popularity to Dynasty and Falcon Crest) get back on track. Suggested set changes, wardrobe updates, and storylines to the producers. Oh my God, so embarrassing to talk about. Kids are so ambitions and uninhibited.
But this was one of my early experiences thinking about writing as a living. Thinking I could turn a television show around. And, of course, even though my writing primarily centers on novels (and an ocassional newsletter article), sometimes I think about writing for television. I'm a big old soap fan, and would love to write for The Young and The Restless or The Bold and The Beautiful.
In the meantime, I'll stick to novels. Been workshopping book number two with my writer groups and friends. Agent has it and loves it. Hinting I need to get cracking on book number three. So far no sequels or continuations. Yet. I'll leave that for the soaps for now.
And I'll continue catching Dallas reruns on SoapNet every now and then, remembering the ways that show sparked a young writer's imagination. fs