May 23, 2011 | By: Tracy

Game of Thrones

I’m back. For real this time.

Work convention is now a distant sight in my rearview mirror and I can return my attention back to writerly pursuits once more. Well maybe not all of my attention.

Sunday evenings are now saved for HBO’s Game of Thrones.



I’ve never read the books … but can’t get enough of this series.

From a viewer standpoint, it’s an engaging story with lots of intrigue (not to mention a minimum of one naked person per show… and I’m a bit of a sucker for gratuitous naked people), and who doesn’t love Sean Bean?  Okay, maybe people who weren’t big Lord of the Rings fans might not . . . but, I digress.

It may be my imagination, but it seems more and more books/series (written by someone other than Sir Stephen King) are being optioned as television shows & movies these days. And more and more those are becoming some of my favorite television shows & movies.

Coincidence? Maybe.

But the one thing all of these adaptations have in common – the thing I like to keep in mind while constructing my own plots now – there are stories within the story that keep the reader/viewer engaged while the main plot builds its way to the ultimate climax. Having one central plot isn’t enough to captivate the attention of most readers/viewers anymore.

Don’t believe me? Take your favorite television show/movie (doesn’t necessarily have to be adapted from a novel/series) and see how many subplots you can find. Then, after you find them, notice the way they all tie back into the main plot. The better this is done, the more we tend to love it!

And it makes me feel less guilty watching television if I can pas it off as a way of "honing my craft".

Do you have a favorite show/movie adapted from a novel or series you’ve read?  Are there any in the works you can’t wait to see?

13 witty remarks:

salarsenッ said...

Great point about subplots. Um...yeah, I don't watch much TV but Vampire Diaries does it for me. :)

Pk Hrezo said...

hey welcome back!I don't watch any TV either... no time! But sounds like I'd like that one. :)

Colene Murphy said...

Yeay!! Welcome back!! I want to see that show SO BADLY! Good to know it's so enjoyable! I really am having a hard time containing my excitement for The Hunger Games movie. Looks like one of the best YA book-movie adaptations I have seen in a while.

Jeigh said...

I've been watching The Office from the beginning with my sister, and I love watching the Jim/Pam thing unfold, and the way Michael Scott is part revolting, part endearing. I think it's a great show for studying character development. That's my excuse for all TV watching now: "I'm studying character development/plot arcs/conflict/etc."

And really, Sean Bean=win.

Donea Lee said...

Welcome back! :) I like this - anything that justifies watching more tv and relates to writing is a good thing!

I'm also looking forward to the Hunger Games. And LoTR was a great book to movie adaptation, too. Can't wait to see what they do with The Hobbit.

Kari Marie said...

Uhh... did you just justify watching more TV and movies for writers? You are my most favorite person of the month. I like your observation though. Love The Vampire Diaries (and I haven't read the series). I tend to like ensemble cast TV shows, with lots of subplots, characters, etc.

Meredith said...

I JUST started watching this show today--perfect timing! And yes, it's the subplots that tend to engage me. And the amazingly developed characters.

Liz Fichera said...

Excellent observation about the subplots. Although it's been off the air for eons, SEINFELD was a master at the subplot/mainplot writing.

Will check out GAME OF THRONES!

Chris Phillips said...

Justified is based on a short story. Good show.

LTM said...

I think the TV shows are doing a better job adapting books than movies are right now. And I wonder if it's because of the time factor. TV shows have more time to develop characters and draw viewers in slowly...

hmmm... now I"m thinking. Don't watch GOT, but don't have HBO. But I've heard it's great~ :o)

Geoff Stokker said...

I agree with LTM. I think TV is adapting books better than movies but I think that this is really because of the time constraints inherent in a movie. You'll be able to show more of the novel's subplots in the novel in a TV series than a movie.

But then on the other hand, I think the best adaptation would be LOTR because they essentially took the novels and "reimagined" them in order to be able to fit the story into three movies. It's almost like a new story to the novel.

But I have to say I'm rather sceptical about the plan to split The Hobbit into two movies.

Geoff Stokker said...

I can't comment on Game of Thrones because they haven't started to show it down here in deepest, darkest Africa.

Creepy Query Girl said...

I haven' heard of this but it certainly looks intriguing. I watch the vampire diaries - I had already read the series several times and actually had the original 1990's covers. I hear they're coming out with the secret circle soon.

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