Onwriting: A Podcast Of The Wga East


OnWriting is a screenwriting podcast brought to you by the Writers Guild of America, East. It's a show about the stories we see on our screens and the people who make them happen. Each week, writers from the film, television, news and digital media industries talk to us about their work - from pitching to production, from process to favorite lines, and everything in between. Season 1 is hosted by Jordan Carlos. Season 2 is hosted by Caroline Waxler.


  • The OnWriting Guide to Crafting Scripted Podcasts: Part Three

    The OnWriting Guide to Crafting Scripted Podcasts: Part Three

    02/11/2020 Duração: 44min

    Geri Cole hosts the third installment of the OnWriting Guide to Crafting Scripted Podcasts. In Parts One & Two, Kaitlin Fontana spoke with podcast writers and producers about the industry’s business side: what the market looks like, how to break in, and how to protect yourself once you’re there; and about the creative side of the industry: from recruiting talent, to necessary skill sets, to creative satisfactions, and beyond. Now, in Part Three, Geri is joined by three guests—Lissette Alvarez, Matt Klinman, and Lowell Peterson—to talk about the WGA Audio Alliance a new initiative from the Writers Guild of America, East which aims to establish and improve the standards and rights for writers in the scripted podcast industry. To learn more, visit wgaeast.org/WGAAudio or follow @WGAAudio on Twitter. About the Guests Lisette Alvarez is the owner of Stormfire Productions, an independent podcast production company. They are the writer, producer, and lead actor of the urban fantasy audio drama KALILA STORMFIRE'S

  • Episode 38: Julie Taymor, “The Glorias”

    Episode 38: Julie Taymor, “The Glorias”

    16/10/2020 Duração: 01h02min

    Geri speaks with acclaimed screenwriter, dramatist, and director Julie Taymor—co-writer and director of the new biopic THE GLORIAS—about her approach to storytelling, how projects can be shaped by limitations, how established creators like her still have to fight to get films like THE GLORIAS made, how travel has been the best education, and much more. Celebrated for her work on stage and screen, Julie Taymor’s writing and directing credits include the 2002 Frida Kahlo biopic, FRIDA; the Beatles jukebox musical, ACROSS THE UNIVERSE; and one of the most successful Broadway musicals of all time, THE LION KING, which received three Drama Desk and two Tony Awards in 1998. Her latest project, THE GLORIAS, is a biography of feminist icon Gloria Steinem. Julie and co-writer Sarah Ruhl adapted the screenplay from Gloria Steinem's memoir, My Life on the Road. The film was released on September 30, 2020, and is available to stream on Amazon Prime. -- Read shownotes, transcripts, and other member interviews: www.onwriti

  • Episode 37: Cord Jefferson, Watchmen, The Good Place, Succession

    Episode 37: Cord Jefferson, "Watchmen," "The Good Place," "Succession"

    10/10/2020 Duração: 38min

    Emmy Award-winning writer Cord Jefferson joins Geri to talk about his experiences in the writers’ rooms for two of the most prestigious series currently on television, writing about race and extreme privilege, why staying in your lane is an antiquated idea, and more. Cord Jefferson was a journalist at Gawker from 2012 until 2014, when he joined the writing staff of the Starz sitcom SURVIVOR’S REMORSE. Since then, he has gone on to write for television series like THE NIGHTLY SHOW WITH LARRY WILMORE, THE GOOD PLACE, SUCCESSION, and WATCHMEN. At the 72nd Annual Writers Guild Awards, the writers of WATCHMEN and SUCCESSION won the awards for New Series and Dramatic Series categories, respectively. Cord also received an Emmy Award for co-writing the sixth episode of WATCHMEN, “This Extraordinary Being.” He is currently developing a TV series about Gawker alongside the site’s former Editor-in-Chief, Max Reed. Season 7 of OnWriting is hosted by Geri Cole, a writer and performer based in New York City. She is current

  • Episode 36: Michael Kirk  Mike Wiser, The Choice 2020: Trump vs Biden

    Episode 36: Michael Kirk & Mike Wiser, "The Choice 2020: Trump vs Biden"

    02/10/2020 Duração: 43min

    Geri is joined by documentarians Mike Wiser and Michael Kirk—the writer-producers of the FRONTLINE special “The Choice 2020: Trump vs Biden”—to discuss making documentaries that are hard-hitting but nonpartisan; their impressive catalogue of Frontline specials, which have examined everything from the Mueller report to Mitch McConnell’s takeover of the Supreme Court; the absurd timelines they work off of for all of their projects, and more. Michael Kirk was the original senior producer of Frontline from its inception in 1983 until the fall of 1987, when he created his own production company, the Kirk Documentary Group. He has produced more than 200 national television programs, and has won four Peabody Awards, four duPont-Columbia Awards, two George Polk Awards, 16 Emmy Awards, and 12 Writers Guild of America Awards for his work. Mike Wiser has worked on more than 30 films for Frontline since joining the Kirk Documentary Group in 2003. His work as a writer and producer reporting on national security, foreign a

  • Episode 35: Amber Ruffin, Late Night with Seth Meyers  The Amber Ruffin Show

    Episode 35: Amber Ruffin, "Late Night with Seth Meyers" & "The Amber Ruffin Show"

    11/09/2020 Duração: 38min

    Geri talks to Amber Ruffin—writer and on-air talent for LATE NIGHT WITH SETH MEYERS and the creator and host of the forthcoming NBC Peacock talk series THE AMBER RUFFIN SHOW—about the process of writing two shows concurrently, how she crafts jokes out of movie clichés, how wearing MC Hammer pants can teach you to be fearless in a writers room, and much more. Amber Ruffin is a writer and comedian who has written for LATE NIGHT WITH SETH MEYERS since its inception. As a writer for LATE NIGHT, she was the first Black woman to write for a late-night network talk show in the U.S., and has also appeared in several of the show's popular segments, such as "Amber Says What?" and "Jokes Seth Can't Tell". In 2018, she hosted the 70th annual Writers Guild Awards New York ceremony, and in 2019, she wrote for the first season of the HBO sketch comedy show A BLACK LADY SKETCH SHOW. Her new series, THE AMBER RUFFIN SHOW, is a levity- and comedy-focused late-night talk show created by and starring Amber, with her fellow LATE

  • Episode 34: Charlie Kaufman, Im Thinking of Ending Things

    Episode 34: Charlie Kaufman, "I'm Thinking of Ending Things"

    04/09/2020 Duração: 45min

    Season 7 host Geri Cole speaks with Oscar- and Writers Guild Award-winning screenwriter and director Charlie Kaufman about his latest film, how his writing is shaped by fear, finding meaning in his films, the benefits of walking, and much more. Charlie Kaufman is a critically acclaimed screenwriter and director. His writing credits include ETERNAL SUNSHINE OF THE SPOTLESS MIND—for which he received the Academy, Writers Guild, and BAFTA Awards for Best Original Screenplay—as well as BEING JOHN MALKOVICH and ADAPTATION, both of which earned him a BAFTA Award and nominations for the Writers Guild and Academy Awards in their respective screenplay categories. Three of his screenplays were included in the WGA's "101 Greatest Screenplays" project in 2005. Kaufman's feature directorial debut was the 2008 film SYNECDOCHE, NEW YORK. His latest project, the Neftlix psychological drama I'M THINKING OF ENDING THINGS, is based on the 2016 novel by Iain Reid. The film is narrated by the unnamed girlfriend of Jake as the new

  • Episode 33: Katori Hall, P-Valley

    Episode 33: Katori Hall, "P-Valley"

    06/08/2020 Duração: 49min

    Kaitlin speaks with writer Katori Hall – the creator and showrunner of the Starz drama series P-VALLEY – about the show's journey from theater to TV, the showrunner as changemaker, how creating a show is like climbing a pole, and much more. Katori Hall is an acclaimed playwright whose stage credits include Hurt Village; Tina; and The Mountaintop – a fictionalized account of Martin Luther King Jr.'s last night alive, for which she received the 2010 Olivier Award for Best Play. P-VALLEY is an adaptation of Katori's play Pussy Valley. The series centers on a strip club in the "Dirty Delta" of Mississippi and the people whose lives—and secrets—revolve around it. The show premiered on Starz in July 2020, and was recently renewed for a second season. -- Read shownotes, transcripts, and other member interviews:www.onwriting.org/-- Follow Kaitlin on Twitter: @KaitlinFontana Follow the Guild on social media:Twitter: @OnWritingWGAE | @WGAEast Facebook: /WGAEast Instagram: @WGAEast

  • Episode 32: Kristen Bartlett and Mike Drucker, Full Frontal with Samantha Bee

    Episode 32: Kristen Bartlett and Mike Drucker, "Full Frontal with Samantha Bee"

    24/07/2020 Duração: 56min

    Kaitlin is joined by Kristen Bartlett and Mike Drucker—the Emmy-nominated and Writers Guild Award-winning co-head writers of FULL FRONTAL WITH SAMANTHA BEE—to talk about the challenges of writing comedy remotely, how they're taking more creative chances with material and the benefits and responsibilities of being co-head writers of a late night show in 2020. Before their time on the Full Frontal writing staff, Kristen Bartlett wrote on two seasons of SATURDAY NIGHT LIVE, while Mike Drucker wrote on THE TONIGHT SHOW STARRING JIMMY FALLON and BILL NYE SAVES THE WORLD. FULL FRONTAL WITH SAMANTHA BEE is a late-night talk and news satire show starring former Daily Show correspondent Samantha Bee, and is now in its fifth season on TBS. -- Read shownotes, transcripts, and other member interviews:www.onwriting.org/-- Follow Kaitlin on Twitter: @KaitlinFontana Follow the Guild on social media:Twitter: @OnWritingWGAE | @WGAEast Facebook: /WGAEast Instagram: @WGAEast

  • Episode 31: Ramy Youssef, Ramy

    Episode 31: Ramy Youssef, "Ramy"

    10/07/2020 Duração: 40min

    Kaitlin chats with Ramy Youssef—the writer, creator, Golden Globe-winning star, and frequent director of the Hulu comedy series RAMY—about the importance of representation in crafting his show, what was in his head when he won his Golden Globe, and why if you're going to be weird you have to earn it. Ramy Youssef kicked off his industry career as a co-star in the Nick at Nite comedy SEE DAD RUN, where he shadowed the writers' room. Since then, he's had a recurring role on USA Network's MR ROBOT and an HBO stand-up special. His latest project, RAMY, drops us into the day-to-day life of Ramy Hassan, a millennial Muslim living in New Jersey who's trying to navigate faith, family and being a first generation immigrant while also waiting in the murky waters of sex, love and trying to be good. Seasons 1 and 2 of the series are now streaming on Hulu, and the show was recently renewed for a 3rd season. -- Read shownotes, transcripts, and other member interviews:www.onwriting.org/-- Follow Kaitlin on Twitter: @Kaitli

  • Episode 30: Tony McNamara, The Great

    Episode 30: Tony McNamara, "The Great"

    02/07/2020 Duração: 35min

    Kaitlin is joined remotely by Tony McNamara—the Oscar-nominated and BAFTA-winning screenwriter and writer-creator of the satirical Hulu series THE GREAT—to discuss The Great's journey from theater to television, how smart women take on the status quo, and why the show's depiction of sex is so refreshing. Tony McNamara wrote a number of critically acclaimed films and TV series in his native Australia before receiving international attention - as well as an Oscar nomination and a BAFTA win - as the screenwriter for the 2018 period piece/black comedy THE FAVOURITE. His latest project, THE GREAT, is loosely based on the life and times of Russian monarch Catherine the Great. The series, which stars Elle Fanning is the titular Catherine, and Nicholas Hoult as her caddish husband Emperor Peter, is available to stream on Hulu, and was just renewed for a second season.  -- Read shownotes, transcripts, and other member interviews:www.onwriting.org/-- Follow Kaitlin on Twitter: @KaitlinFontana Follow the Guild on soci

  • Episode 29: Liz Tigelaar, Little Fires Everywhere

    Episode 29: Liz Tigelaar, "Little Fires Everywhere"

    26/06/2020 Duração: 52min

    Kaitlin chats with Liz Tigelaar – showrunner and head writer for the Hulu miniseries LITTLE FIRES EVERYWHERE – about the start of Liz's creative journey as a Dawson's Creek writer's assistant, how story arcs around mothers and daughters have evolved, why an intersectional writers' room is essential for all storytelling, and much more. Liz Tigelaar's long career in TV drama includes shows like BROTHERS AND SISTERS, ONCE UPON A TIME, and NASHVILLE, among others. She also created the CW series LIFE UNEXPECTED and ran the Golden Globe-nominated Hulu series CASUAL. Her latest project, LITTLE FIRES EVERYWHERE, stars Kerry Washington and Reese Witherspoon and is based on the novel by Celeste Ng. The series is a meditation on motherhood, race, and the tensions between them in a suburban Ohio town in the '90s. -- Read shownotes, transcripts, and other member interviews:www.onwriting.org/-- Follow Kaitlin on Twitter: @KaitlinFontana Follow the Guild on social media:Twitter: @OnWritingWGAE | @WGAEast Facebook: /WGAEa

  • Episode 28: Taika Waititi, Jojo Rabbit

    Episode 28: Taika Waititi, "Jojo Rabbit"

    23/01/2020 Duração: 29min

    Kaitlin is joined via phone by Taika Waititi -- the writer, director, and star of the film JOJO RABBIT, and the producer of the show WHAT WE DO IN THE SHADOWS - both of which have earned him nominations at this year's Writers Guild Awards. Taika chats about writing a Nazi satire, using fear as a creative motivator, writing comedy when you aren't attracted to comedy writing, how he engages with the Indigenous filmmaking community worldwide, and more. Taika Waititi's filmmaking career started in the early 2000s and gained international attention when he received an Oscar for his 2004 short film TWO CARS, ONE NIGHT. Since then, he has written and directed films like EAGLE VS. SHARK, BOY, WHAT WE DO IN THE SHADOWS, HUNT FOR THE WILDERPEOPLE, and THOR: RAGNAROK, which have all been met with widespread critical acclaim. His latest project, JOJO RABBIT, is a dark comedy based on Christine Leunens's book Caging Skies. Set in Nazi Germany, the film follows Johannes "Jojo" Betzler, a Hitler Youth member who finds out t

  • Episode 27: Greta Gerwig, “Little Women”

    Episode 27: Greta Gerwig, “Little Women”

    23/12/2019 Duração: 33min

    Kaitlin sits down with writer, director, and actor Greta Gerwig – the writer and director of the 2019 film LITTLE WOMEN – to talk about why the world needs a new version of the classic story; how Greta cuts down her 400-page first drafts; the intersection between women, money, and writing; and much more. Greta Gerwig started her film career with a small acting role in the 2006 film LOL. She went on to act in, co-write, and co-direct several mumblecore films over the subsequent years, and has been a frequent collaborator of writer and director Noah Baumbach since 2010. She made her solo screenwriting and directorial début with the 2017 film LADY BIRD, for which she was nominated for both a Writers Guild and an Oscar. LITTLE WOMEN is an adaptation of the semi-autobiographical 1868/1869 novel by Louisa May Alcott. The film follows the four March sisters – Amy, Jo, Beth and Meg – as they come of age during the aftermath of the Civil War. The film will be released in theaters on December 25, 2019. -- Read shownote

  • Episode 26: Micah Fitzerman-Blue and Noah Harpster, “A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood”

    Episode 26: Micah Fitzerman-Blue and Noah Harpster, “A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood”

    20/12/2019 Duração: 36min

    Kaitlin is joined by Micah Fitzerman-Blue and Noah Harpster, co-writers of A BEAUTIFUL DAY IN THE NEIGHBORHOOD, to talk about the eternal battle between cynicism and kindness, the gravitational pull of Tom Hanks, and how keeping bankers' hours keeps them sane. Before their most recent project, Micah Fitzerman-Blue and Noah Harpster were writers and producers on the recently concluded Amazon series TRANSPARENT, for which they won a Peabody Award and were nominated for Emmy, Writers Guild, Golden Globe, and GLAAD Awards. The duo are also co-writers of MALEFICENT: MISTRESS OF EVIL, the 2019 sequel to the 2014 film MALEFICENT. Inspired by the Esquire Magazine article “Can You Say… ‘Hero’?,” A BEAUTIFUL DAY IN THE NEIGHBORHOOD is based on the true story of a friendship between renowned children’s television host and educator Fred Rogers and journalist Tom Junod. -- Read shownotes, transcripts, and other member interviews:www.onwriting.org/-- Follow Kaitlin on Twitter: @KaitlinFontana Follow the Guild on social m

  • Episode 25: Noah Baumbach, Marriage Story

    Episode 25: Noah Baumbach, "Marriage Story"

    16/12/2019 Duração: 27min

    In the season 5 premiere, Kaitlin sits down with Writers Guild Award- and Oscar-nominated writer and director Noah Baumbach to talk about his latest film, MARRIAGE STORY. They discuss how a film about divorce is really a film about love, what New York and LA mean on screen, when you know you're ready to open that final draft file and really write, and much more. Noah Baumbach made his feature film debut with his critically acclaimed 1995 film KICKING AND SCREAMING, and has gone on to write and direct such films as FRANCES HA, THE MEYEROWITZ STORIES, and THE SQUID AND THE WHALE – the script for which was nominated for both a Writers Guild Award and an Oscar. MARRIAGE STORY follows actor Nicole Barber and her stage director husband Charlie as they struggle through a grueling, coast-to-coast divorce that pushes them both to their personal and creative extremes. The film now streaming on Netflix. -- Read shownotes, transcripts, and other member interviews:www.onwriting.org/-- Follow Kaitlin on Twitter: @KaitlinF

  • The OnWriting Guide to Crafting Scripted Podcasts: Part One

    The OnWriting Guide to Crafting Scripted Podcasts: Part One

    03/12/2019 Duração: 37min

    Over the past five years, podcasts have exploded in popularity. You listen to them, and with over 700,000 active podcasts out there, chances are you or someone you know has a show of their own. A 2019 report by Edison Research found that 70% of the U.S. population has heard of podcasts and over 50% have listened to one.   Fictional or scripted podcasts represent a small but steadily growing subset of the podcast industry. The Guild – and our members – have a lot of questions about this new frontier of scripted podcasting. Is it a lower-cost way to get a story known to the public… and to TV producers? Is it a viable, fulfilling way to create stories in its own right? What are some ways writers can protect ourselves as we explore this new form of work?   To answer these questions, we spoke to writers and producers who have made a name for themselves in the scripted podcast industry – some who are just starting out, and some whose podcasts have gone on to become TV shows.   In Part One, LIMETOWN co-creator Zack

  • The OnWriting Guide to Crafting Scripted Podcasts: Part Two

    The OnWriting Guide to Crafting Scripted Podcasts: Part Two

    03/12/2019 Duração: 31min

    When you're a screenwriter moving to TV or a novelist moving to screenwriting or even a comedy writer moving to drama, you'll have questions about how this new territory differs from what you're used to. Questions like... how does breaking a script work? Or... how do I write character development over the course of a two hour film rather than over a full TV season?   Questions are normal. But typically, there are at least some factors that are givens – things that have been established over the course of decades. Problem is, since podcasts are new territory for pretty much everyone, those sorts of rules and standards about the most basic issues don't exist yet. There's no consensus about how to format a podcast script, let alone any popular beliefs about things like whether you need a writer's room.   To find answers for some of these questions, we spoke to writers and producers who have made a name for themselves in the scripted podcast industry – some who are just starting out, and some whose podcasts have

  • Episode 24: Edward Norton, Motherless Brooklyn

    Episode 24: Edward Norton, "Motherless Brooklyn"

    15/11/2019 Duração: 54min

    Kaitlin chats with writer, director, producer, and actor Edward Norton about his many screenwriting jobs, how he gets past writer's block, his 20-year journey taking his latest film - MOTHERLESS BROOKLYN - to the big screen, and much more. Edward Norton had his film debut in the 1996 film PRIMAL FEAR, and within three years had risen to prominence for his starring roles in AMERICAN HISTORY X and FIGHT CLUB. Since then, he has received critical and cult acclaim – as well as numerous awards and nominations, including a Golden Globe Award and three Academy Award nominations – for his roles in films like RED DRAGON, THE ILLUSIONIST, THE INCREDIBLE HULK, MOONRISE KINGDOM, THE GRAND BUDAPEST HOTEL, BIRDMAN (just to name a few). He has also directed or produced films like KEEPING THE FAITH and THE PAINTED VEIL. MOTHERLESS BROOKLYN is an adaptation of Jonathan Letham's 1999 novel of the same name. The film follows Lionel Essrog, a lonely private detective living with Tourette Syndrome, as he ventures to solve the mur

  • Episode 23: Hasan Minhaj and Prashanth Venkataramanujam, Patriot Act

    Episode 23: Hasan Minhaj and Prashanth Venkataramanujam, "Patriot Act"

    24/10/2019 Duração: 48min

    Kaitlin is joined by Hasan Minhaj and Prashanth Venkataramanujam, co-creators of the Netflix series Patriot Act, to talk about how they joined forces to create their headline-making series, the importance of a unique take on the news, and why you can never have enough late night shows. Hasan Minhaj is a comedian, writer, producer, political commentator, actor, and television host. Before starting his time as host of PATRIOT ACT WITH HASAN MINHAJ, you may have recognized him from - among other things - his four-year stint as a correspondent on THE DAILY SHOW, or as the host of the 2017 White House Correspondents' Dinner. Since the premiere of PATRIOT ACT, Hasan has won a Peabody Award and two Webby Awards, and was listed of one of TIME's 100 Most Influential People of 2019. Prashanth Venkataramanujam is a writer, actor, comedian, and producer who is currently the head writer and executive producer for PATRIOT ACT. In 2016, Prashanth wrote Minhaj's host speech for the Radio and Television Correspondents' Associ

  • Episode 22: Tom Perrotta, Mrs. Fletcher

    Episode 22: Tom Perrotta, "Mrs. Fletcher"

    17/10/2019 Duração: 41min

    Kaitlin sits down with novelist, screenwriter, and showrunner Tom Perrotta to discuss his creative process, writing about sexual awakening, porn, adapting his latest novel into his latest TV show, and much more. Tom Perrotta is the bestselling author of nine works of fiction, including Election and Little Children, both of which were made into Oscar-nominated films, and The Leftovers, which he and Damon Lindelof adapted into a Peabody Award-winning HBO series. MRS. FLETCHER, Perrotta's new HBO series, is based on his latest novel, and tells the story of a single mom who attempts to start a new life after her son heads off to college. It premieres on October 27th. -- Read shownotes, transcripts, and other member interviews:www.onwriting.org/-- Follow Kaitlin on Twitter: @KaitlinFontana Follow the Guild on social media:Twitter: @OnWritingWGAE | @WGAEast Facebook: /WGAEast Instagram: @WGAEast

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