Monday, August 30, 2010

I say this without a whit of exaggeration TIED-IN edited by Lee Goldberg and written by Lee and other members of the International Association of Media Tie-In Writers is the most fascinating, entertaining and honest book about the writing life I've ever read.

With writers such as Max Allan Collins, Tod Goldberg, Nancy Holder, Donald Bain, Greg Cox, William Rabkin and many others dealing with their experiences of converting movies, tv shows, movies and games into novels, we see the pleasures and frustrations of this particular craft. And in the process we see what life is really like for professional writers. Max Collins' piece on converting his own Road To Perdition to conform to the movie script for the tie-in; his dealings with the Dick Tracy movie were even stranger. Nancy Holder's take on visiting the set of the tv show she was novelizing shows just how brutal fourteen hour days are for everybody involved in creating the episodes. A number of writers use a page or so of script to show how it looks as prose after they've done their work--extremely helpful.

Greg Cox tells some fascinating stories about writing sequels then prequels and keeping storylines straight; and Lee does an excellent job setting the book up with his piece called Tied In: The Business, History and Craft of Media Tie-In Writing.

TIED-IN is rich with humor, lore, wisdom about the writing life and Lee Goldberg is to be commended for editing it with such verve and style.

And his brother Tod is to be commended for writing the best line in the book. Lamenting that his literary novels have not sold a great number of copies, he writes "I'd need the Jaws of Life to pull me on to the bestseller list."

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