Scribe Award Nominees Announced

51POtwD4LeL._SY344_BO1,204,203,200_The International Association of Media Tie-In Writers, which I co-founded some years ago, is pleased to announce the Scribe Award Nominees for 2016.

Acknowledging excellence in this very competitive field, the IAMTW’s Scribe Awards honor licensed works that tie in with other media such as television, movies, gaming, or comic books. They include original works set in established universes, and adaptations of stories that have appeared in other formats and that cross all genres. Tie-in works run the gamut from westerns to mysteries to procedurals, from science fiction to fantasy to horror, from action and adventure to superheroes. HALO, Elementary, 24, Star Trek, Mike Hammer, Star Wars, Shadowrun, Doctor Who: these represent just a few.
The Scribe Award winners will be announced at ComicCon San Diego in July. The exact day, time and location of the Scribes Panel including the award ceremony will be announced shortly.
IAMTW thanks everyone who sent entries, all wonderful, for consideration. Congratulations to the following nominees:

BEST ORIGINAL NOVEL – GENERAL

Elementary:The Ghost Line by Adam Christopher
Kill Me, Darling by Mickey Spillane & Max Allan Collins
Don Pendleton’s Mack Bolan: Desert Falcons by Michael A. Black
24: Rogue by David Mack

BEST ORIGINAL NOVEL – SPECULATIVE

Deadlands: Ghostwalkers by Jonathan Maberry
HALO: Last Light by Troy Denning
HALO: New Blood by Matt Forbeck
Pathfinder: Forge of Ashes by Josh Vogt
Shadowrun: Borrowed Time by R. L. King
Star Trek The Next Generation: Armageddon’s Arrow by Dayton Ward
Star Trek Seekers 3: Long Shot by David Mack

ADAPTED NOVEL – GENERAL AND SPECULATIVE

Backcountry by D. E. McDonald
Batman: Arkham Knight by Marv Wolfman
Crimson Peak by Nancy Holder
MANOS ­­­– The Hands of Fate by Stephen D. Sullivan
Star Wars: Dark Disciple by Christie Golden

SHORT STORIES

Mike Hammer The Strand “Fallout” by Mickey Spillane and Max Allan Collins
Shadowrun: World of Shadows “Swamp of Spirits” by Jason M. Hardy
The X-Files: Trust No One “Back in El Paso My Life Will Be Worthless” by Keith R. A. DeCandido
The X-Files: Trust No One “Dusk” by Paul Crilley
The X-Files: Trust No One “Non Gratum Anus Rodentum” by Brian Keene
The X-Files: Trust No One “Statues” by Kevin J. Anderson

AUDIO

Dark Shadows “Bloodlust” by Alan Flanagan, Will Howells and Joseph Lidster
Dark Shadows “In the Twinkling of an Eye” Penelope Faith
Doctor Who “The Red Lady” by John Dorney
Doctor Who “Damaged Goods” by Jonathan Morris
Pathfinder Legends: “Mummy’s Mask: Empty Graves” by Cavan Scott

2014 Scribe Awards Announced

Mr Monk Helps HimselfThe International Association of Media Tie-In Writers gave out the 2014 Scribe Awards, honoring excellence in media tie-in writing, at Comic Con San Diego this past weekend.

There was a tie in the Best Original Novel category between Monk: Mr. Monk Helps Himself  by Hy Conrad and Leverage: The Bestseller Job by Greg Cox.

Star Wars: Kenobi by John Jackson Miller won the Best Origial Novel in the Speculative fiction catergory while Pacific Rim by Alex Irvine won Best Adaptation. The Best Audio Award went to  Blake’s 7 The Armageddon Storm – by Cavan Scott and Mark Wright and Mike Hammer: “So Long, Chief” by Max Allan Collins and Mickey Spillane won for Best Short Story. The Archie Comics tie-in Kevin by Paul Kupperberg won the Best Young Adult Scribe.

Author Diane Duane was selected as the 2014 Grandmaster, the highest honor awarded by the International Association of Media Tie-In Writing, recognizing her achievements writing novels based on movie and television shows.

 The annual award, also known as the Faust, recognizes Ms. Duane’s huge body of work and amazing versatility. A true master of multiple media, Ms. Duane has written for television and comics, and authored short stories and novels.  She has written Star Trek and X-MenSpiderman and Seaquest DSV.  Her original series include Young WizardsFeline WizardsThe Middle Kingdom.  Her tv credits include both animated (Disney’s Duck Tales) and live action (Star Trek the Next Generation) and Dark Kingdom: The Dragon King.
Congratulations to the winners! Here’s the full list of nominees :
 
Audio
Blake’s 7: The Armageddon Storm – by Cavan Scott and Mark Wright
Dark Shadows – 33: The Phantom Bride – by Mark Thomas Passmore
Dark Shadows – 37: The Flip Side –  by Cody Quijano-Schell
Short Story
Mike Hammer: “So Long, Chief” by Max Allan Collins and Mickey Spillane
Star Trek Online: “Mirror Image” by Christine Thompson
After Earth:  “Savior” by Michael Jan Friedman
After Earth: “Redemption” by Robert Greenberger
Warhammer:  “The Dark Hollows of Memory” by David Annandale
Shadowrun:  “Locks and Keys” by Jennifer Brozek
Star Wars KenobiOriginal Novel General
Monk: Mr. Monk Helps Himself  by Hy Conrad
The Executioner:  Sleeping Dragons by Michael A. Black
Leverage: The Bestseller Job by Greg Cox
Leverage: The Zoo Job by Keith R. A. DeCandido
Murder She Wrote: Close-Up on Murder by Donald Bain
Original Novel Speculative
Supernatural: The Roads Not Taken by Tim Waggoner
Fringe: The Zodiac Paradox by Christa Faust
Star Wars: Kenobi by John Jackson Miller
Supernatural: Fresh Meat by Alice Henderson
Star Trek: From History’s Shadow by Dayton Ward
Young Adult
Archie comics: Kevin by Paul Kupperberg.
Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs 2 byStacia Deutsch
The Croods by Tracey West
Adapted Novel, General And Speculative
Pacific Rim by Alex Irvine
47 Ronin by Joan D. Vinge
Man of Steel by Greg Cox

The Mail I Get

Tied In Cover 6-22-2010I get variations on this question every day from writers eager to write tie-ins based on TV shows. Here’s one that came in this morning:

 I have recently purchased your book “Tied In” in order to learn more about the fascinating world of tie-in novelization. I’m a writer myself, having published, to date, one novel and a group of short stories (some of which are included in Amazon Best-Selling lists) and have always wanted to someday write a tie-in novel. I have never been able to discover though how to do it, so when I saw your email at the beginning of the book for questions I knew I had to message you.

I’ve for a while wanted to write a tie-in novel for my favorite show, Being Human on the SyFy channel. I’ve been with the show since day one and I feel I could write a book that is true to the show. But my problem is I don’t know how to gain the necessary rights to do so. How would I manage to request and then prove myself that I am capable to write a book based on the show? I’m not certain if this is covered in your book, but I felt a direct answer would help me best.

I’m afraid that it’s very unlikely that you’ll be able to get the opportunity to write BEING HUMAN tie-ins. You’d have to license the rights from the studio/production company, which is a very expensive proposition…and unless you are a proven author, and have a publisher behind you, they won’t be interested.

Almost all tie-in book projects are initiated either by the studio or a publisher. The studio will contact publishers and say the rights to a particular series are available for license at X price…and several publishers might bid on the project. Or a publisher will contact the studio and seek a license to publish novels based on a particular current or past series or film. Once the license deal is completed, then the publisher will look for an author to write the books…and, in most cases, it’s someone they have worked with before or who has established a reputation as someone capable of doing the job.

Speaking of tie-ins, there was a great article published today about the “lost art” of writing novelizations. It’s worth checking out.

Amazon Launches The Dead Man Kindle World

KindleWorldsEaterofSoulscover
Today my series The Dead Man joined Pretty Little Liars, Vampire Diaries, and the works of Kurt Vonnegut among the many “franchises” in Amazon’s Kindle Worlds, their fanfiction publishing program. Now anyone can write, publish and sell Dead Man stories and novels on Amazon…and earn significant royalties.

I know what you’re thinking. Is this the same Lee Goldberg who has been railing against fanfiction on this blog for years?

Yes, indeed.

My problem with fanfiction has always been that it is copyright infringement… that people are ripping off characters and stories that they don’t own without the permission or involvement of the creators or rights holders.

Well,  now Amazon has cleverly solved that problem.

Everyone who writes in the Amazon Kindle Worlds are doing it with the consent of the rights holders…and both parties, the fanfiction writer and the rights holder, are profiting from the relationship. In fact, the Amazon Kindle Worlds are more akin to tie-in writing than fanfiction (but I’ll have more on that in a few days, when I do a Q&A interview here with the executive in charge of  Amazon’s Kindle Worlds).

You can find out more about how you can contribute to The Dead Man Kindle World here. In the mean time, you can read the very first Dead Man Kindle World title… Joseph Nassise’s Eater of Souls.

The Mail I Get – Tie-In Edition

Tied In

Tied InI got two very similar emails today asking, basically, the same question about tie-ins. Here they are:

I’m seeking guidance on writing a novel series for a past TV franchise that continues to hold a loyal fan base.  You had accessibility to writing the Monk novels from your freelance work on the show and your established relationship with the creator.  Any suggestions on who would be the appropriate contact to query regarding rights from a past dramedy for which I am interested in writing a novel series?  Would it be the creator via his agent or someone else?

And here’s the other one:

wanted to let you know that lately I’ve read several of your Monk novels and have enjoyed them greatly. I wanted to ask you how would someone approach studios regarding writing novels based on existing shows? I’ve a Doctor Who novel and was wondering if you had any pointers on how I should approach publishers. Who do I approach – do I approach BBC Books direct or do I approach the TV company, copyright holders?

The simple answer is that, in most cases, TV tie-in books are publisher-generated and do not come about because of an author’s interest in the property. The way it usually works is that either the rights-holder (usually a studio) with a hot series property auctions the publishing rights to the highest bidder…or a publisher approaches the rights-holder (usually through the licensing department of a studio) about licensing the publishing rights to a property. Either way, the publisher will pay the rights-holder a license fee as well as a percentage of the sales. The rights-holder also maintains creative control of the project and provides photos, logos, and other marketing materials related to the show. Once the rights are secured, the publisher then seeks out authors to write the tie-in books…usually going to established professional writers who they know can work within tight guidelines and deliver a strong, clean manuscript in very little time.

As unproven authors, you really have nothing to offer the rights-holders of a classic, or hit, TV series that would motivate them to license the novel rights to you. If a publisher is already producing books in a tie-in series…like, say, STAR TREK or DOCTOR WHO, you could contact the editor and pitch yourself as someone to consider to write one of the books, but the chances of that approach succeeding are, to be blunt, nil.

So the bottom line is there’s really no way for you to interest a studio in letting you write novels based on one of their shows unless you approach them with a publisher attached…or you are already a big name in your own right and having you attached to the book would guarantee significant sales and publicity. You can learn more about tie-in writing, and how the tie-in biz works by reading Tied In: The Business, History and Craft of Media Tie-in Writing