Jack Dorsey

Web Series: The Twitter of TV?

Halfway through writing season two of F TO 7TH, I've witnessed a shift in my writing. I don't know if the movement is forward or backward. Most likely the latter because I'm forcing myself to be more painfully honest with the imperfect person I am and the mess I'm sure to become. That means emotional regression: The cornerstone of good comedy.

I just finished reading a couple of stories about Jack Dorsey (zeitgeist? he's everywhere), one of the creators of Twitter and now Square (which I just ordered for absolutely no reason besides the fact that it's free), and it struck me that web series are the 140 characters of the television show.

There is something addictive about shaping an episodic story within tightly contained, self-imposed restrictions. There's also this liberating freedom to make mistakes because the form is still such a free-for-all. Web series creators pen the rules and we have decided that there are no rules. Me, I like order but only if I impose it upon myself, so web series and I get along well. We're thinking of moving in together, but her parents don't know she's gay.

An undergraduate degree in journalism influenced my creative writing in that it taught me to get to the fucking point. Web series have taught me to strip away three acts into three moments. In between those moments are a lot of tiny character flaws, and within those character flaws is where, hopefully, something awful and funny occurs. Of course, those are just my rules. Other people are far more successful and think a lot less about crap I probably shouldn't waste time thinking about.

Some people fear that the world is changing into one big marketplace for the self. Maybe it is, but it's up to us to reshape our art to meet the demands of our audience, who we need in order to have a conversation. That doesn't have to be a bad thing if you use the No Rule rule as your blueprint.

Now's the time.