I got your phone number written in the back of my bible

Right now I’m writing a proposal for a drama series, with a shiny spec script attached.

The cards are off the board, and it’s straight to script, no time for a treatment. The second episode, no less, because according to Katharine Way, writing the first or last episode is just far too easy.


Anyways, part of the process of creating a series is writing the series bible. A bible is a document setting out the stall for a series. If we give you the money to make this show, what will you give us in return?

Or to put it more succinctly:

  • Who are these characters?
  • What’s the series about?
  • What’s the story engine?

As part of my research, I’ve been looking up series bibles available on the Internet. Here are the ones that I managed to find:

Sheena – Steven L Sears

The Dead Zone – Michael Piller

Freaks and Geeks – Paul Feig

Star Trek Reboot – Bryce Zabel / J Michael Straczynski

Poltergeist: The Legacy – Richard Barton Lewis

With the exception of the Star Trek Reboot (which was written by two established showrunners just for the hell of it), each of these bibles was used as the basis for a TV series.


6 responses to “I got your phone number written in the back of my bible”

  1. Just today I got an email from a producer asking for a series bible to go with the pilot script I had sent him. Fortuitously I found this post of yours linked from Alex Epstein’s site and now have a much better idea of just what has to go into said series bible.


  2. Am I the only one who has had this thought, that the Zabel/Straczynski document isn’t a treatment (what they say it is) so much as it is an illustrated pitch?

    I read it and felt like I was being pitched a series, it doesn’t read anything like a bible or a treatment does.

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