View Full Version : NEW SOAP - IN DEVELOPMENT (need input)
04-17-2003, 07:58 AM
I am an aspiring soap opera writer. I have been developing an 8-year soap opera for the past 5 and a half years. I wanted to get everyone's suggestions on what you would like to see. I have written the entire first year and felt I should stop to see about soap viewer opinions. Suggest something GENERAL, not specific. By general I mean the following examples:
-When a character dies, they really die
04-17-2003, 06:20 PM
I'd like to see characters who get together, romantically, stay together.
04-17-2003, 06:21 PM
04-21-2003, 10:42 PM
Thank you two for your input. I am bumping this up to get some more feedback. I hope more will respond cause I have everything all planned out and I am in the final stages of writing it and I was hoping to get some last minute suggestions.
04-21-2003, 10:45 PM
How do you all feel about the following:
-Strong Gay couples/characters
-Permanent Deaths(in other words, when a character dies, they ACTUALLY die)
-Slower pace or Faster pace
-Shockers vs Love Stories
04-21-2003, 11:30 PM
Originally posted by garrettgam
How do you all feel about the following:
-Strong Gay couples/characters
-Permanent Deaths(in other words, when a character dies, they ACTUALLY die)
-Slower pace or Faster pace
-Shockers vs Love Stories
Strong gay couples are okay, what is wrong with them? Coarse language is fine, along with permanent deaths. It is sad that Passions first major character death had to be because the actor, Josh Ryan Evans died. That was horrible. Slow pace is dumb, you need to move it fast. Shockers are a lot better then love stories imo.
One thing, do not put teens in it. Teens ruin soaps. They should stick with the adults, the REAL major characters. They started the show, they should still be able to continue in it imo
04-21-2003, 11:33 PM
The "teen scene" is very limited. More than half the cast are adults. I focus on them more but of course the teens intertwine. I want a diverse group of viewers, teens and adults. Oh and I agree with all that you said.
04-21-2003, 11:35 PM
So you written a soap opera? May we read it, or may I read part of it please? :) I love reading soap opera novels.
04-21-2003, 11:38 PM
I am working on it. I have been for 5 and a half years. I am keeping it private because I am working on the scripts and intend on proposing it to a network in the future. That's why I want viewer input. I want to please the viewers.
04-21-2003, 11:45 PM
Originally posted by garrettgam
I want to please the viewers.
Okay, I don't know about some soap fans, but it wouldn't hurt to have humor in it. Make some scenes funny. Juliet Mills does it great on Passions. Try to had humor, but also serious drama. I don't know it is your soap, but look at Passions. This was my favorite soap of all, but then Josh died and I lost interest, and Juliet just doesn't play her part well right now. In the beginning it was the best, now it is dragging storylines and closed storylines we never know what happen. Also if you are going to add supernatural stories to it, do it right. Don't follow Passions, they don't do supernatral stories well. They did in the beginning but not anymore. Like I said, Passions was great in the beginning, but do you see what happened to it? It is dumb.
04-21-2003, 11:49 PM
I DO have supernatural stuff but it all fits together. My soap is 8 years long and the storyline is a huge 8-year supernatual journey where everything is leading to something and there are pieces to fit together through the entire thing. It's not like Passions at all! Way different. And I do have a comic relief character. Also there are a lot of characters and storylines do not drag at all. I have limited everything to 8 years long so it is pretty fast paced to cram everything in.
04-22-2003, 02:53 PM
Just checking my new signature with the image I made. Hope it works.
Please continue to discuss.......
04-22-2003, 05:06 PM
Originally posted by garrettgam
Just checking my new signature with the image I made.
That is the BEST picture anyone has made of Buffy so far. I love the back ground, you do great work. :)
04-22-2003, 06:30 PM
Thanks. I am a little disappointed in the slant effect of the "Buffy" and "The Final Hours." It isn't exactly like UPNs. But I guess it turned out ok. I have the same image in regular color but I liked it one solid color. It looks better.
04-25-2003, 10:48 PM
As a long-time soap viewer here's what i like-
Romance, Roman, Romance- I like strong romances with couples that had to struggle to find thier way to each other (Ei- AMC's Mateo and Haylee) and i DON'T like it when a couple gets together and then they just dissapear from the show (Ei- AMC's Janet and Trevor), if i watch a couple struggle together i want them to be happy, but not to the point that they have nothing to do. i find you can get convincing reality-based drama with a strong couple. (EI- AMC's Ruth and Joe circa the 1970's)...
Fueds and Rivals- One of the best parts about soaps is watching two characters that hate each other go at it on a regular basis, and if written correctly a good fued/rivarly can sustain over years and years (EI- OLTL'S Dorian and Viki or AMC's Brooke and Erica).
Social Relevance- I like my soaps to be rooted in reality, at least in part, i believe that soaps are a unique medium because they are on every day of every week of every year and they can educate and inspire people like no other medium... And i love watching a soap that is telling stories rooted in the issues relevant to the society we live in. The example i cite for this is "One Life To Live" in the 1990's and "All My Children" in the 70's, 80's and 90's.
Shocking Twists and Turns- The one thing i truly believe that soaps are missing today are the stunning shocks and twists that once made them so unique... I remember back in the late 80's/early 90's watching soaps and being stunned every friday because of a shocking twist that would happen at the end of the episode and keep us wanting more and saying "I can't wait until Monday"... This is missing from soaps today because in todays world we know whats going to happen weeks sometimes months before it happens, if an actor or actress is returing/leaving we know in advance, we didn't know this years ago, and to tell the truth it was better that way... I mean if we had known that Gwyenth was going to be the Cornith Killer on "Loving" or Maria was going to die in a plane crash on "AMC" would it have been as effective and memorable as those stories were? I think not. and that is why recent returns like "OLTL's" Dorian or "GH's" Tracey were ruined because we knew and there was no surprise. I truly miss the days when i would tune into my soaps and be like "Oh My God" througout the entire episode... Anyway that's my advice to you...
Good luck on your soaps.
04-26-2003, 12:03 AM
Thank you so much for your detailed advice! The main thing I want to add is the wanting for shockers. Believe me, I have been working on this show for 5 and a half years and I am mainly writing it FOR the shockers. The shockers are HUGE and are weekly, sometimes daily. And I always have a HUGE, HUGE episode every year with the biggest shockers of all(during MAY SWEEPS). If you watch my soap, I know you will love the shockers. I think the reason why I can write such shocking shockers, is because I have a plan for the end of the show, 8 years, and that once that finale airs, that's it. So I try to think of the BIGGEST shockers, because I know that people won't be mad. They will just think "Man, there are only a couple years left. What could be next?"
Garrett aka "pax"
04-26-2003, 08:32 AM
Is it going to be a 1 hour soap or a 30 minute soap?
04-26-2003, 10:43 AM
Definitely a one hour soap!!!!!! WIth all the characters and stories I have planned, there is no way I could have a 30 minute one. Actually, it USED to be a 30 minute show...so you all atleast know some of the background of it that not many people know...;)
Here is my input:
Feuds - It is always part of pop culture when two characters hate each other. Have them have some kind of violent or semi-violent encounter at least once a month. Of course, slaps are essential throughout the series run.
Couples that stay together for years - A couple that stays together for years will always be seen as the backbone of the show. Look at AMC's Joe and Ruth. They've been together for at 25 years, and Ruth still makes occasional appearances (Joe is there quite often).
Evil women - Every soap, daytime or primetime needs at least one evil woman, whom we call the 'bitch' There's Erica Kane, Angelique Bouchard, Alexis Carrington, Abby Cunningham and the list goes on...
Strong matricarchs - A strong matriarch in the fashion of Charita Bauer, Mary Stuart, and Elizabeth Collins Stoddard are always good.
I've been gathering thoughts on my own soap for the past few months. It's called "The Shining Sun." I'm planning it more as a long-running soap, maybe around 23 years.
05-20-2003, 06:22 PM
I've been writing my own soap too for around 2 1/2 years. It has basically an even amount of teens and adults. It's a pretty modern soap. The teens are more involved in mature storylines. Little focus on highschool.
I've worked pretty hard on it. The one thing I am kind of lacking is a rivalry. I have to work on that. I have one, but I've downplayed it for a while.
And Garrett, I agree with what everyone else has said.
I may discuss mine further, but I doubt I'll ever try and sell it. I might, so details may be sparce.
05-20-2003, 06:28 PM
I too have written my own soaps. Some in great detail and some i've kind of just outlined. I agree that it is hard to write a good feud, thats one thing most of my soaps are lacking... Thats why i have so much respect for the writers of the currents soaps who have maintained succesful fueds for so long...
05-20-2003, 06:38 PM
I have a feud between two girls, Tammy and Kelly. Tammy wanted Kelly's boyfriend, longtime friend Brian, so she tricked Alan, Kelly's brother, into helping her break them up. Alan fell for Tammy and of course agreed to help. Kelly and Tammy shared many confrontations and even flew over a small mountainside road. Tammy was a teenage alcoholic. In short, Alan and Tammy did everything imaginable to break up Brian and Kelly. They did break up and Brian helped Tammy through rehab, but nothing came of it. Alan and Tammy fell for each other, and I admit to keeping them off screen for a long time. I moved them onto other things last summer. Well, as of now, Brian and Tammy ended up growing closer, Alan slept with someone else he had grown close to, so Brian and Tammy are together.
And get this, an older woman, Selena, had always wanted the Sands fortune (Brian's last name and family), so she spent a long time chasing after Brian's brother Will, and then their father, Jake. Well, Selena drugged Brian and slept with him, claimed she was pregnant, and then turned up dead in her hotel room. Well, a year later (exactly a year later, after an autospy as well!) Selena came back - with a baby. It was revealed Brian was indeed the father. So, Brian sued Selena for custody. Selena was a true bitch, and tried to prove Brian unfit, so she set up Brian and Kelly (a few months after they broke up) to sleep together and locked them in a hotel room with champagne. It worked, but they got married too! Well, in court, the plan backfired and Brian and Kelly were awarded custody for a 3 month trial period and NO outside influence. So, now, I've seprated Brian and Tammy and they are fighting to stay together. I've just outlined the next at least 4 months. Tammy and Kelly will switch roles and Kelly is going to attempt to steal Brian back.
I work pretty hard. I do a huge outline of the year, and then month and finally a daily summary. I try to do some scripts too, but that takes up too much time. I have enough info to really write a script for each episode.
Anyway, what do you all think? That's all I'm giving away, lol.
05-21-2003, 10:17 AM
Sounds great sounds like a show i would watch very 90210-ish! And that is a compliment! 90210 is a great show! that i hold as the benchmark of all teen soaps... Dawson's Creek, Felicity, My So-Called Life and so on are more Drama series than Soap operas...
05-21-2003, 02:43 PM
Thanks factsoflife. It's not really a teen soap, but that was one of my major stories. I focus pretty heavily on family, the adults and the teens as well, pretty even too, no preferences. I just try and do things differently than normal soaps, do something so unexpected.
05-21-2003, 04:10 PM
Here are the basic Storylines of some of my shows, i tend not to say soap because some of them tend to be more drama series than soaps...
My first show is called "One Of These Days"- 16 year-old Beverly Hills teenager Kimberly is shocked when her parents are killed in a car accident. she is further shocked when she finds out that her trust fund is frozen until she is 25 years old and that she must move to Iowa with her Aunt and Uncle whom she hasn't seen since she was 5 years old. I have several "Fueds" in this series... In Iowa Kimberly and her cousin Megan start a mini-feud when Kimberly starts datings Megan's ex-boyfriend Corey. The main focus of the show is what happens after Kimberly is raped by a classmate named Chuck and it is discovered that Megan and her snobby friends Marni and Gabbi hired Chuck too "Rough Kimberly up." and that he took it to the next level and raped her. In order to move the series along i resolve the fued very quickly... But Later when Megan turns on Gabi and Marni and tells the police everything they start another mini feud with Megan.
In My Daytime Soap "Night and Day." I have SEVERAL fueds... The series is set in the small college town of Edgeville, Connetticutt and the main fued is between the characters of Cyrstal and Michelle. Crystal is the newly appointed college president, with a deep dark secret, that she used to be a madame and that she got the postion of presdient after one of her most frequent customers, who happened to be the former college president accidently strangled one of her call-girls and instead of calling the police she made him promise to appoint her a president when he retired, which he did.. Michelle is a professor who was supposed to be next-in-line for the position who is peeved when Crystal comes out of nowhere and gets it, so she hires private investigator Dirk to dig up dirt on Crystal, and when she finds nude pictures of Crystal she uses it as blackmail against her... This fued plays out over what i hope will be years... Also another fued on my show has Doctor Leslie pitted against her very own sister Shantell when Leslie finds out that Shantell and her own husband Ron have been having an affair for months. The feud heats up when Ron feels guilty and tells Shantell that he wants nothing to do with her anymore and begs Leslie to take him back. Leslie agrees to give him another chance... But like all soap villians Shantell doesn't take defeat. What she does is pretend to move out of town, but instead she rents a cheap apratment downtown and starts stalking Leslie and Ron, this goes on for MONTHS... The boiling point is when Shantell breaks into Leslie's house one night and kidnaps Leslie and Leslie's daughter Kristen (6 years old). She takes them to an abandoned summer camp and locks them in an old equipment shelter. She leaves them there for two weeks time (that is the number of episodes it takes before the storyline is resolved)... While they are locked up Shantell demands that Ron make love to her repeatedly or she'll kill them.... Ron does all her can to refuse Shantell's advancesbut eventually gives in in order to insure that his wife and child is safe... But what he doesn't know is that Shantell has secertly videotaped the dirty deed with full intentions of showing the video to Leslie. I won't tell you how it ends because it is a very satisfying end.... Also on this same show, teenage hitchiker/runaway Deanne is having a hard time running away, until she meets Dean a handsome drifter who she presueds too let her join him on his roadtrip from- Arizona, their trip goes great and they grow very close and make love. until they reach Edgeville and Deanne finds out that Dean has a girlfriend, Maureen. Maureen doesn't mind that Dean gave Deanne a ride or that they have become friends, but when she finds out that they made love and have fallen in love she flies into a rage and thus starts a huge fued... Things heat up when Deanne gets a room at Madamme Luna's boarding house, where it turns out Maureen also lives and they become roomates.... Without giving to much away lets just say the FUR FLIES!
A third series i have written which is set in a college Sorority house has tons of feuds, mostly due to boy troubles....
And lastly another daytime soap i have is set in a small town called "Oakhurst" and is a political soap opera in which the ruthless, hated, selfish Jennica Simmons has just been named Mayor of Oakhurst. Everyone thinks Jennica is evil and must have slept her way into office. Which she DID... Jennica slept with former mayor Tony Lowell. As it turns out after sleeping with him Jennica blackmailed him into naming her as his predocessor by threating too tell his wife... He humors her by drawing up the proper documents. When he feels guilty and tries to do the right thing by calling the deal off, Jennica gets wind of it and arranges to have him killed in a fiery plane crash before the documents can be destroyed. Anyway once Jennica succeeds in getting him killed and is sworne into office a whole slew of people that Jennic has wronged turn up in town. Most notably is Tad one of Jennica's 6 ex-husbands from a life she lived years ago that she wants to put behind her, see Tad is a ex-convict pimp with a vendetta against Jennica... He wants revenge because it was a 17 year old Jennica who testified against him and got him sent to prison for pimping and the murder of a prositute, who was Jennica's best friend. Now 10 years later Tad turns up in Oakhurst planning on hurting Jennica in the worst way, by revealing that she was once a hooker addicted to crack and runining her career. There are other fueds, most of them involve Jennica however.. Here a slight previews of some of them...
Lauren Thompson is the daughter of Jennica's third husband, Charles Thompson who was pronounced dead five years ago when a mysterious blonde breaks into the mansion and slips a knife into his back... Adding to the mystery is the fact that Jennica was supposedly out of town on a personal family matter. Jennica is immeditly the prime suspect in the murder, but is eventually found innocent and is left EVERYTHING in Charles's will... She does not give a dime of it to Lauren, Charles's only daughter... Lauren has held a grudge against Jennica ever since... Because not only did Jennica take all the money she also threw Lauren out of the house, also taking all of Lauren's possesions and selling them. Lauren had to move in with her Alcholic, verbally abusive mother and had to drop out of her prestigous prep school and attend public school and get a job as a waitress at a cheesy pub in town.
Another feud involves Melissa Town who gave Jennica her first job as an assitant to her husband, Mark Town, a lawyer. This is a mistake that Melissa has regreted her whole life, as not long after Jennica starts working for him does Mark announce that he is leaving Melissa for none other than Jennica. This was Jennicas second marriage... It lasts Eight years, until Mark dies of a heart attack.
There are more but i don't want to bore u with them... if you've even read this far.. LOL...
THIS IS Tonja Walker-Davidson who i envision playing Jennica someday...
05-21-2003, 04:48 PM
My show is called Sudden Days (odd name, I know, lol). It centers on several core families. I've written it daily for the past 2 1/2 years. Since October 30, 2000 to now. I've got the rest of 2003 planned out (I do it in modern day time so I can keep track of dates, sweeps, etc.), and am writing daily in August now. It's the boiling point of the Brian/Kelly/Tammy storyline.
It focuses on the Sands family, Bennett family, Lewis family, Matthews family, Owens family and several other characters. I'd post more info but it would be a LOT of reading, lol.
I've started writing "Shining Sun," whose titled I changed to "The Rich and the Regal." There are three filthy rich families: The Ardens, the Majorses, and the Stones. There are two close-knit families: the Hartmans, and the MacLaines. There are also some drifters who aren't really related to anybody, or are related but live on their own, mainly the grown children of the Hartman and MacLaine families. I've written some, but I'm far from finishing the first episode.
05-21-2003, 06:03 PM
Aside from the show's i already listed i have a show called "The Story Of Jacob" However i might change the name to "The Story Of Us" or "Our Story"... The show follows the life of 16 year old high school sophomore Jaocb Stewart a manic-depressive, bisexual teenager who must deal with not only his school which he hates but his overbearing family. His older brother who cannot stand Jacob since he's come out of the closet, his useless mother who cares only for her other son who passed away a few years ago, actually he commited suicied. We also meet other non-family members who also have a profound effect on Jacob and his family... I have only one season written because it was sooooo emotionally draining to write this show...
I would be willing to show some of my shows to anyone willing to read it... BUT only these shows: The Story Of Jacob, One Of These Days, and my soroirty soap called "My Best Friends And Me" which is more of an outline as opposed too an actual penned script. My two Sitcoms "Getting Over It" and "Starting From Scratch" (i'll give u plot of them if u want). As well as other shows i didn't mention on these boards yet, a legal drama that i think would fit well on "Lifetime", and i have some other shows i've written, one is about a social worker... but i think i may have deleted that one... Anyway if u want to read these shows let me know and i'll email them too u... Also if anyone is willing to share there shows with me i'd love to read them, i love to read A LOT.
I don't want anyone to read "Oakhurst" or "Night and Day" because i am planning on selling them someday (hopefully) and i want to keep them a secret.
05-21-2003, 06:08 PM
I was wondering something... Since we all are writting soaps i was wondering which soaps and/or writers have inspired you? whose work has been an influence on you or do u hope to immulate someday?
For me there have been several influences-
My main influences are undoubtely Agnes Nixon and Aaron Spelling. I have admiered Agnes Nixon because of the geniune passion and humanity in her writing, when she writes she writes from the very depth of her soul. In addition she writes 3-deminsonal characters that even if they do villianess, mean and cruel things they do it for purposes that matter to right wrongs, a prime example of this is OLTL's Dorian Lord-Hayes, how is one of soaps best villians ever, and has commited so many horrible deeds yet always acts with a good reason, she has ALWAYS acted to help or protect her family... I admire her work because she is also willing to take risks and tell stories that others would not be willing too... Take "AMC" in the 1970's when Agnes so bravely tackled the Veitnam War with Ruth Martins soaring Anti-War speech. nad in the 70's she bravely let Erica Kane have Soaps first illegal abortion... She has lead AMC into the new millenium with Bianca Montgomery's coming out and coming of age... As u can see i adore Agnes.
I like and admire Aaron Spelling for the sheer volume of his work... His show may not be tv's best, but as far as soaps go they are TOPS! Dynasty, 90210, Melrose.... these are some of the best soaps Ever... his writing i enjoy because he can be verstitille and create shows as different as night and day (90210, Charlie's Angels, Profit...).... And he has also tackled issues that other shows were afraid to try....
As far as shows go... "ALL MY CHILDREN" is my number one influence, it is a show with such class, dignity and so on... I have enjoyed this show very much...
Also Agnes's other soaps "One Life To Live" and "Loving/The City" have inspired me... I've never seen her "As The World Turns" but i've heard its good.
For primetime i like "Melrose Place", "90210", "Dawson's Creek", "Felicity", "My So-Called Life", and "Popular". Even though some of these don't exactly qualify as "Soaps" they have inspired me.
05-21-2003, 06:11 PM
I guess it would have to be the writer's of NBC's Sunset Beach for me because that was the main soap I was watching during the time of my soap's creation (Jan of 1998)
01-06-2004, 02:00 AM
Garret, hows the soap writing going?
01-06-2004, 02:24 AM
How great of you to ask. It is going amazingly. Starting Jan 8th, I am going to be documenting my creation of it in a video, which I hope will be editing down for release once the soap gets on the air.
Starting Jan 8, I am going to go through every piece of paper I have and organize it in the categories I have already set up. Then Jan 1, 2005 I will begin writing the actual episodes, from the beginning (rewriting the ones I already started. I have been through a lot of story changes). I will write one episode every day until it is complete. BTW, I have worked out every storyline and I even wrote the ending. So I will KNOW when the soap is complete.
If you would like to keep in touch and moniter my progress etc... and get to know me better, my email address is email@example.com. I have MSN Messenger and I am on it all the time.
01-06-2004, 04:15 PM
Good luck with your soap! I hope it gets on the air!
I'm a die-hard Y&R fan myself, but I sure will check out your show.:)
03-29-2004, 01:48 PM
I think supernatural elements are always good. But then again I was a diehard Dark Shadows fan, too.
03-29-2004, 02:37 PM
Well supernatural is always ok, i was a big Port Charles fan, but be careful that it doesn't take over the whole series, as it did w/ my beloved PC. Supernatural should only be a peice of it, not the whole, try to balance it with realistic stories of core families and socially relevant issues.
03-29-2004, 05:34 PM
The supernatural doesn't take over the entire series. I don't know if you all know what an umbrella story is but that's what the supernatural stuff is. It's a major storyline, with a bunch of little storyline within it. There are two umbrella storylines, so the supernatural is really just half. Most of the supernatural stuff evolves around one character and the rest of the characters have their own lives, and sometimes interact with the character. All this would be more clearer if I wasn't being so vague of course. But even if the supernatural stuff took over briefly, it is done in such a way that it's not boring. It is NOTHING like Passions. They use the supernatural and magic stuff as comic relief. Like Tabitha's baby throwing dishes. That kind of stuff. On mine, everything happens for a reason, and it's all around this magical puzzle/journey leading to a huge storyline for the final year.
But again, I thank you all for the support. I'll keep you all updated from time to time.
03-29-2004, 07:56 PM
Well i'm glad that it won't take over the series.
03-30-2004, 02:21 AM
I have set up a writer's log website so you all can track my progress. The site is up already but it won't be opening until April 8th. The top image looks a little bare, because I am getting my front tooth fixed within the next few days and a hair cut and I will be going in for a photo session. So, until then, the banner is blank. But after, the blank space will be filled with images of me. So, go ahead and check it out so you can get familiar with it. And I invite you all to come by April 8th.
Also, please throw out unique ideas. Like how would you all feel about a commercial free episode? or an extra long episode?
12-27-2004, 10:00 PM
not sure if you still post here, but any updates on your soap?
12-27-2004, 10:15 PM
Is there anyone else here that writes thier own soaps? want to share?
12-30-2004, 08:47 AM
Wow, I completely forgot about this thread. No, I don't post here anymore. But, yes I am still working on my soap, but there has been a major shift in its format. It is now a 10-novel series! I decided to make the change last Thanksgiving (2004). I am starting to convert the story into novels now, which will take a while. I hope to finish the first novel by the end of 2005, so that I can start looking for a publisher. I am setting up a website (that will debut January 8) at www.eggammon.com. It's nice to know that people are still interested. Come January 1, it will be 7 years since I started writing this, and through those 7 years I have grown and matured, and so has the story (a great deal). I am very proud of it and I hope it becomes popular as a novel series. (I explain my reasoning behind the decision to convert it to a novel series on my website when it opens).
(AKA E.G. Gammon)
12-30-2004, 06:51 PM
Great i look forward to seeing it.
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