How to Make Your TV Script's First Ten Pages Count To an Executive

Hosted by Marla White


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Marla White

Webinar hosted by: Marla White

Former Head of TV for Emmy Award Winner Peter Tolan's Fedora Entertainment

Marla is former head of TV for Emmy Award winning writer & producer Peter Tolan's Fedora Entertainment with experience producing prime time series and award nominated television movies in multiple genres. She's worked with writers who have sold pitches to Fox, TNT, CBS, NBC and ABC, have been staffed on premium cable dramas. Clients include writers who have won awards including a Nicholl Fellowship finalist, as well as published novelists. Companies like CAA and Oxygen rely on her skills as a story analyst and story development expert for people who are ready to take their writing to the next level. Full Bio »

Webinar Summary

We've brought in veteran development executive Marla White to give you an ultimate guide on dissecting the first 10 pages of a TV script from her perspective as an executive. In addition, by looking at specific examples from great scripts like “Justified,” “Weeds,” “How I Met Your Mother,” “Grey’s Anatomy,” “Modern Family” and more, she's going to break it down for you why and how those pilots succeed where others failed and how to apply that to your script. Marla has worked with writers who have sold pitches to Fox, TNT, CBS, NBC and ABC and have been staffed on premium cable dramas.

What You'll Learn

Case studies referenced in this webinar: “Justified,” “Weeds,” “How I Met Your Mother,” “Grey’s Anatomy,” “Modern Family” "Breaking Bad" and more.

What Your Character Needs 

  • Clarifying who the main characters are
  • How to establish their sustainable, unsolvable conflict
  • How to handle the ensemble cast

How to Make Your Opening Compelling 

  • Explosive opening vs. building to grab the reader’s interest
  • How important is a cold open?

Lean In To Your Genre

  • Network example
  • Serialized example
  • Drama example

Prove Sustainability 

  • 3 elements to prove the longevity of your series


  • Flashforwards & flashbacks; when to use then and when not to
  • How to establish side stories even in the cold open
  • Introducing side characters to drive side stories
  • The fine line - how do you differentiate between “ooh, that’s an interesting twist” vs “what the ef is this about?”


  • One huge tip about dialogue
  • How to establish the main character’s voice
  • How to use dialogue effectively between the characters & the story

Description Rules!

  • How to make description work for you & reel in the reader

Plot Twist 

  • What is the plot twist & where (what page) should it fall in the script?
  • Things you must think about when it comes to a plot twist
  • How do you round out your plot twist?

Q&A with Marla

About Your Instructor

Marla is former head of TV for Emmy Award winning writer & producer Peter Tolan's Fedora Entertainment with experience producing prime time series and award nominated television movies in multiple genres. She's worked with writers who have sold pitches to Fox, TNT, CBS, NBC and ABC, have been staffed on premium cable dramas. Clients include writers who have won awards including a Nicholl Fellowship finalist, as well as published novelists. Companies like CAA and Oxygen rely on her skills as a story analyst and story development expert for people who are ready to take their writing to the next level.


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