Tuesday, April 26, 2011

V is for Veronica Mars

V is for Veronica Mars

Veronica Mars is one of my favorite TV shows. It only ran for three seasons which is a bummer but you can watch all those seasons on Netflix which rocks.
Veronica is the daughter of Neptune's former sheriff who now runs his own Private Investigation business after he lost the election.
Veronica's best friend was murdered. Like her father she doesn't believe the man convicted of the murder actually did it.
In between trying to solve the mystery of her best friend's murder Veronica solves mysteries for fellow students at Neptune High.

Fans of Nancy Drew, Trixie Belden and the Maggie Quinn, Girl vs. Evil books will like Veronica.

Here's what I learned watching Veronica Mars.
1. Suspense. There are some pretty suspenseful moments in this show. Thank goodness for Netflix so I don't have to wait a week for the next episode.
2. Tension. This show is full of tension.
3. Plot and subplot. Basically the structure of these seasons is that there is one big mystery to solve each school year but then there are little mysteries uncovered along the way. Even when she is tracking down a her classmate's lost dog she we are usually reminded at some point in the episode of the bigger mystery. We always know Veronica wants to solve the big mystery even as she's solving smaller mysteries on the side. Sometimes it is easy to lose sight of what a character wants when dealing with subplots. But that doesn't happen in this show.
4. Always watch what other characters are doing. Veronica is observant. When writing a scene observe the scene like you are solving a mystery. What are all the characters doing? Is anything out of place or does anyone's behavior seem funny? Show that.
5. Not everything is what it seems.

What is your favorite TV show? Has it made you a better writer?


E.J. Wesley said...

I've heard so many good things about this show. I'm definitely going to have to make time to watch. Sounds awesome!


Lindsay N. Currie said...

Wow, I've heard so much about this show I think I need to watch it! My favorite show is Fringe, and personally I love the way mysteries unfold on that show so from that angle, yes I suppose it helps me a bit with my writing (how much to include and when). You know, I think it might have been Tracey Neithercott that had an awesome post one time about the show Bones and how it's helped her with her writing. . . I might try to dig up the link because it was way cool!

Lindsay N. Currie said...

Found the link! http://thewordsonpaper.blogspot.com/2011/01/arcs-or-getting-from-here-to-there.html

Matthew MacNish said...

I've never seen this one, but I always loved The Wire.

Now my favorite show is Game of Thrones, or The Office.

TheyCallMeVarmit said...

Sounds like a really good show. I have never waytched it, but will check it out. My fave is either Doctor Who or Criminal Minds. (not a writer...but could probably find something in there to help with it)

Great post!

Julie said...

I never saw this show when it aired, but have always heard great things about it. It does sound really good, I think I am going to have to add it to my Netflix.

KO: The Insect Collector said...

Just working my way through this, because it is so highly recommended. I like it so far!

Corinne O'Flynn said...

I don't watch TV much but this show has landed on my radar from a few recommendations. I might have to add it to my netflix queue!

I think the one thing I have gotten from TV/movies that has improved my writing is the concept of scene, and writing in scenes. When you can picture it in your head like a standalone unit, it is must easier to write it.

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Becky Wallace said...

When I'm actually writing, I don't watch a lot of TV. But I can say that the Glee soundtracks are my best writing music. Love them!!!

Tim Riley said...

I definitely think writers can learn from good TV shows. My favorite show on TV these days is Southland. It does a great job of developing the characters by putting them in situations and letting their actions dictate how the audience defines them. This is something I think about with my own characters.

Jaydee Morgan said...

TV shows can teach us so much. I've never seen this show - might have to look it up sometime :)

Lei said...

You can never go wrong with Veronica Mars! :D

It is intelligent, well-written and well-directed. It's just too bad that good shows like these rarely have the chance to succeed. The cancellation of VM still hurts for me. :(

Angela Felsted said...

This post makes me want to see Veronica Mars. I don't know that watching TV has improved my writing, but those script writers certainly know what they're doing.