Like everyone else, I draw my writing inspiration from a lot of places. My own experiences, what I observe going on in the world, and reading. Always reading.
Although my novel writing is still in the learning stages, I’ve found myself also increasingly inspired by television. Yep, television. It’s actually a great tutorial for my novel writing. After all, while a great TV series has everything – amazing acting, directing, costumes, and set design, it has to start with great storytelling.
Since I’ve been paying more attention, I realize storytelling in a TV series and a novel is pretty much the same. A TV series is broken up into seasons, like a novel series is divided into book installments. Each season’s episode can also be considered a chapter. And as with a book, a good TV series is character driven, with the protagonists responding to whatever they’re presented with in comedic, dramatic, or suspenseful fashion.
When watching shows that hold my interest, I’ve realized the way a story unfolds in a book should follow the same pattern as said series. I’ve learned that each chapter in a novel should have its own beginning, middle, and end while successfully moving the entire storyline forward, just like an individual TV show episode does.
After realizing these parallels, it only makes sense that paying attention to the writing behind great TV shows can serve me well as I work to improve my own craft.