Friday, January 11, 2008

Latest News from IAMTW Members

Max Alan Collins has signed to do the novelization of MUMMY 3 (he did the previous two plus SCORPION KING) and X-FILES 2.
William Rabkin has signed a three book deal to write original novels based on the USA Network series PSYCH. The first one comes out in January 2009.
Tod Goldberg has signed a three book deal to to write original novels based on the USA Network series BURN NOTICE. The first book comes out in July 2008.
Robert Greenberger is writing the novelization of the feature film HELLBOY 2: THE GOLDEN ARMY

Tuesday, January 1, 2008

Richard Curtis on Tie-in Writing

Legendary agent Richard Curtis writes a lot about the publishing business and he's had some things to say about tie-in writing. Among them:
Tie-ins are kin to souvenirs, and in some ways are not vastly different from the dolls, toys, games, calendars, clothes, and other paraphernalia generated by successful motion pictures and television shows. Those who write them usually dismiss them with embarrassment or contempt, or brag about how much money they made for so little work. Yet, when pressed they will speak with pride about the skill and craftsmanship that went into the books and assure you that the work is deceptively easy. And if you press them yet further, many will puff out their chests and boast that tie-in writers constitute a select inner circle of artisans capable of getting an extremely demanding job done promptly, reliably, and effectively, a kind of typewriter-armed S.W.A.T. team whose motto is, "My book is better than the movie."

We don't necessarily agree with him about the motto, but we certainly take pride in the work.

Mel Odom on Tie-In Writing

We stumbled onto this interesting interview, conducted seven years ago, with novelist Mel Odom on tie-in writing. He says, among other things:
"A lot of 'regular' authors look down on media tie-in authors because they figure 'You're not doing real work. You're not really being a writer. You're doing knock-off stuff.' There have been a lot of 'regular' writers who try to do what Chris Golden and I do, and they can't because they don't assimilate the world enough, or they're trying to bring too much of their own stuff to it. Media tie-in writing is really tough, because you have to be strong writer, and walk-in there and tell the best story you can, while at the same time you have to set your ego aside and do it 'their way' to a degree, as far as 'Buffy would never do this.' 'But, when I was a kid, I would do that...'

He wants to make sure that his books are more than just a screenplay in book form:
I feel that a lot of people, why they try to do novelizations, they squeeze the dialogue in between text descriptions. You know, 'They were sitting in a restaurant. He had pancakes, and she had a milkshake, and he said...' You know, and there's a lot of novelizations that read that way. I don't want mine to read that way if I can. I want to give them a book that has legs. If you do a really nice book, it may have legs and be out there longer than the movie is. The movie will come and go in a month or two, but if you write the book really well, there will still be people ordering it for a long time after the film has left theatres. There's something about a book."

Yes, there certainly is.