Welcome to the PIT List!

I'm a network field producer who also worked in local tv as a line producer and field producer. Over the years, I have had the great fortune to work with super people. Now I'd like to pass along what I know and rant a tad.

"Dear Maggie..." pitlist@gmail.com
I check it sporadically, but I love answering emails, so if you have an issue or difficult person you need help with, don't hesitate to shoot it my way.

Maggie L

Maggie L
One of the rare times I'm in the office

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Avoiding Cliches

There's a lot of wild weather around-- and maybe it has hit your region. No better time to talk about cliches. Maybe I've been covering tornadoes too long, but I'd like to permanently ban AT LEAST these phrases:

"Tossed like toys"
"Looks like a war zone"

And there are many others. Cliches do your writing and your viewers a disservice. It's a cheap, lazy writer's way to fill a script. When you have truly moving material, look at it and find ways to tell these people's stories in an authentic way. Remember that there's always a family and community behind each obliterated home and block. What's special about them? How can you communicate that without relying on a writing crutch?