brianbird.net

THE ART OF STORY, THE CRAFT OF SCREENWRITING AND MORE

Welcome to My Blog

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Photo by Mary Denman, Denman Photography

Welcome to my blog.  Of all the endless writers’ websites out there, I’m honored you found this needle in the digital haystacks, and I hope this page will acquaint you with who I am, what I do and why I do it.

I’m a first a writer, and have been since I first started being paid for my words in 1974 as a 17-year-old sportswriter for a weekly newspaper.

The decades have battled-hardened me into a media professional with a passion to illuminate the power of great ideas through the medium of Story – whether it be in the pages of a book or magazine, on television or movie screens, or as a strategic imperative for an organization struggling to communicate its core values.

You can find my credentials and bio at my IMDB page, so I won’t belabor that here. Suffice to say, I’ve been in the media trenches as a writer and producer for three decades and I have survived many cycles of professional feast and famine.  I’ve experienced all the highs and lows, accolades and rejection every scribe experiences, and I believe I am a better human being and a more fearless writer for all of it.

When I launched this blog a few years ago, I intended it mostly to keep my friends, family and colleagues updated about what I’m doing. But I’ve come to realize Facebook and Linked-In are plenty good for that. This site actually has far more important potential and purpose.

It’s an opportunity for you and me to have real interaction. For us to help each other hone our craft and raise our game.

I’m a busy, working writer and hope to keep it that way, but I also love encouraging and mentoring new voices. In fact, that is one of the gifts others have affirmed in me, and I can count as my “offspring” at least a dozen Hollywood professionals with thriving careers, and hundreds of others who are either on the cusp of breaking into the media business, or at the very least have improved their craft.

Photo by Beckie Vasquez

Photo by Beckie Vasquez

The truth is, there are dozens of great professional writing and script coaches out there.  The difference is, I’m coming at this with battle scars and practical experience.  So, as this blog evolves, here’s what I hope it can be:

  • A vibrant exchange of ideas.  Yours and mine.
  • Some blunt talk about the challenges of breaking into media (especially in the You Tube Age when everybody, and his brother, claims to be a filmmaker).
  • Tools, tips and training to help you find your voice (and so you can survive the hard knocks with fewer bumps and bruises than me).
  • No theoretical advice. Every suggestion I offer you comes from 30 years of actually doing the work and is designed to make you fearless.
  • Your shortcut into the Big Leagues.
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Photo by Eike Schroter, Schroter Photography

Someone once asked me what I want for an epitaph on my tombstone. It was a scary question: What will people remember about me a hundred years from now? Will I have a legacy that outlives me? As I thought about how to answer that question, a deep soul impression overcame me, and here’s what I heard:  “His words illuminated people’s hearts and moved them closer to their creator.” Since that question, my every, waking, professional moment has been designed to achieve that goal.

What do you want to be remembered for? I hope my posts, musings and occasional counsel can help you achieve that. Let’s help each other take the world by Story!

What people are saying

I’ve worked with a lot of people over the years, made a few friends, and somehow it ain’t all bad:

Brian and I have worked together on many projects over the years, including our latest one. He is the consummate professional, experienced, smart and production savvy.  He has written and produced both television and feature work, and knows exactly what he is doing. One of the greatest benefits of working with Brian is his knowledge of story structure, which plays right into his abilities as a producer. He’s also facile with the secular and faith marketplace, knowing how and when to reach each of those varied audiences. I truly cannot wait to find another project we can work on together.

— Ralph Winter, Producer The Giver, X-Men, Planet of the Apes, Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer

 

The writing staffs of network TV shows are always about casting the most talented writers you can. One of these writers is Brian Bird. When Step By Step was launched on ABC, I wanted Brian along for the fun, we became good friends, and he helped us keep the show on the air for seven seasons and 165 episodes as a writer and producer.  That is, until Martha Williamson lured him away to become a writer and Co-executive Producer of Touched By An Angel.  Brian was not only a terrific writer and producer, he’s one of the good guys.

— Michael Warren, Executive Producer, Step By Step, Family Matters, Perfect Strangers 

 

Sure, his rugged good looks and Bond-like effect on women are super annoying. But once you get past your petty jealousy, you’ll also discover Brian Bird is one of the nicest and most talented writer/producers working in Hollywood today. Man, I hate that guy!

— Jonathan Bock, President, Grace Hill Media, Producer, Hillsong – Let Hope Rise

 

Brian Bird is an extraordinary writer-producer who has worked in both features and TV, network and cable, comedy and drama. I’ve worked with Brian several times and would do it again in a heartbeat. He is talented, articulate, level-headed, and a huge asset to any creative endeavor. He is also a gifted public speaker – informative, entertaining, and very approachable.

— Ross Brown, writer, producer, author, and Associate Professor of Film and Media Arts, Dodge College at Chapman University

 

When Brian speaks, I listen. I want to learn from the best, and after spending three decades in the Hollywood trenches, he knows the pitfalls, the obstacles, and the opportunities. If you’re interested in how Hollywood is impacting today’s culture, or how to make a difference in media, he’s the man to call.

— Phil Cooke, media consultant, filmmaker, and author of One Big Thing: Discovering What You Were Born to Do

 

Brian is a writer’s writer. He served as my teaching partner in screenwriting at Biola University many times. Those were some of the most productive sessions, not only for our students, but also for me to learn from a master storyteller. He’s also a trusted producer in the industry, traversing the many waters of story, in particular, writing themes from cross-cultural characters to heroes and heroines of yesteryear. Brian is a remarkable person. In the secret places of my heart, I desire to be like him (and you should too!)

— Michael Gonzales, Ph.D., Chair, Cinema and Media Arts, Biola University

 

And I thought I was on every page.  This Bird guy seems to be everywhere.

— Waldo, the guy with the red-and-white striped shirt and hat

10 Replies

  1. Long time reader / 1st time poster. Really enjoying reading the blog, keep up the excellent work. Will most definitely start posting more oftenin the future.

  2. Thanks for reading and interacting. Hard to post often when you’re on deadline, but I hope to do a better job in the weeks and months ahead.

  3. Daniel Cosper

    There is a story and a project unlike anything you have read before registered at CreatorsVault.com #CV5331, titled “Red Carpet” A family firendly non-violent construct that introduces a 48-Million demographic with funding. DC

  4. Jan Johnson

    Hi, I was just watching “The Shunning” and googled to see if there would be a sequel. You did a great job adapting the book to the screen and it left me wanting more! My 14-year-old is reading my trio of the Shunning books and she loved the movie too. I was just reading through your credits and am in awe. You are responsible for working on many things I have watched and greatly enjoyed from Evening Shade to Touched by an Angel to Saving Sarah Cain and more. I am so thankful for anything I can find that is both appropriate for my children and also of good quality. There is a great lack of Christian and simply inspirational/wholesome media for families these days. I am so happy to see more of these around lately – thank you to you and Mr. Landon! I hope there is a sequel to “The Shunning” in the works?! Keep up the good work and thank you!

  5. Jonathan Shelley

    Brian,

    Over the past few months, I have felt compelled to re-create the story of David and Goliath. I have already designed several ideas and moments for the movie. Recently, after researching on the internet I discovered several news articles from 2011 discussing the recreation of this story called Goliath (directed by Scott Derrickson). I am not sure how far along this movie is, but I would love to get involved in any way. This may not be the correct portal to contact but I am reaching out to find whom I need to contact. Any help would be greatly appreciated!

    Thanks,

    Jonathan

  6. Thanks for your kind remarks, Jan. I’m glad you liked “The Shunning.” You’ll be happy to know we are now in post-production on “The Confession,” our sequel to “The Shunning.” It premieres on the Hallmark Channel on January 19, 2013 at 8 p.m. I hope you’ll tune in and let us know what you think of that one, too.

  7. Greetings Brian;

    This is my leap of faith message that you speak about so often in your blogs/advice columns. I just ask that you check it out and get back to me if interested. You can just google the book “Running Scared”, by Robert Leon Davis. Or just check out the URL address I’ve sent. Thanks….

  8. Hi, Brian! I so appreciate your wonderful work! What a joy to see wholesome, affirming entertainment.

    I am an author of a historical fiction series and am wondering about the process to have the books considered for television/movie production.

    Thank you in advance!

  9. Your style is really unique compared to other people I’ve read stuff from.
    Thank you for posting when you have the opportunity,
    Guess I will just bookmark this blog.

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