: Bob Gillen's Blog
: Writer Mildred Lewis on Web Series
Developing the Web Series Etiquette
Mildred Lewis and her writing partner Adam Fox collaborate on a web series titled Etiquette. “Both Adam and I were shocked,” Lewis says, “to find out how many people are passionate about etiquette. We saw it everywhere.”
The idea for their series came from a London bookshop. “Adam found this great little Collins Nutshell book, Etiquette, by Martine Legge, while he was on vacation in London. We were already looking for a subject for our first web series. When we looked at the book, we knew we had found our show. HarperCollins UK was kind enough to grant us the rights.”
Lewis says that during the development process, she and Adam “thought deeply about how we related to etiquette. We talked and laughed a lot about bad manners. Then we forced ourselves to think about what good manners should look like.
“These were really rich conversations,” Lewis states, “because we share many of the same values. But Adam's a young Orthodox Jew from North London and I'm a middle-aged black woman from Harlem, so we see the world through different lenses. Hopefully, those differences help us create scripts that connect to more people.”
Writing for a Web Series
We asked Lewis if writing for a web series differs from other screen writing? How does it affect, for example, scenes, beats, pacing?
“Good writing is good writing is good writing,” she emphasizes. “Plot, character, setting, conflict, compelling ideas, engaging emotions all remain crucial.
“However, on the web you're writing for a viewer who is going to have a more intimate experience. Most people watch web content alone, often on small devices. I think of it as the difference between going to an arena for a concert versus listening to a music box. So you have to write more directly to the viewer. Funny has to be funnier! You can't ride a laugh track or laughter in the room.”READ MORE ON LEWIS AND WEB WRITING...