The Connor Wars Writer’s Room 5 – The Season Unfolds

Even though life has conspired to be time-consuming at times (it’s certainly sleep-consuming), I’ve been diligently at work mapping out how this season will probably unfold. At the end of this post is my list of tentative episode titles so far. It’s at the end because there are possible spoilers to be gleaned from the titles, and I don’t want to ruin it for those who want to be surprised.

I’d be remiss if I didn’t give a lot of thanks to all of you who have taken the time to writer your comments and suggestions both publicly and privately. You help to inspire me to not settle back into the story but constantly try to make each episode not only stand on its own but to be important pieces in the larger puzzle (which is why the season is constantly being mapped out).


I do want to reiterate that there are two different story-telling techniques going on because it’s going to become more noticeable. The future with John is being told in a classic, linear, serial-episodic fashion. I want each episode (or short block of episodes if I do an arc) to pretty much stand on their own while also feeding into the serial storyline. The past storyline with Sarah is being told non-linearly. Because I’ve been doing some setup, it hasn’t been very noticeable that I’ve been jumping around in time, but it’ll be more apparent soon enough.

I admit that I’ve been torn about that technique as I’m in someway “spoiling” some of that plot for people as I jump around. Here’s my reasoning: John’s storyline is the “not set” story. Sarah’s storyline is John’s past, and thus has already happened. So, in order to tell John’s story effectively, I need to be able to shoot out information via Sarah’s timeline as necessary.

Again, sometimes you aren’t going to notice. In a given episode, even though the past storyline is only fifteen-minutes of screen time or so, it might encompass years worth of events. I’m being able to cut out the stuff that I’d have to have for  a serialized story in order to just tell that one story that I need to tell.

I hope that makes sense. I hope you also go with it as it occurs.

Surprises For the Writer

In any event, I’m currently outlining episodes 4, 5, and 6 with the intent to start writing F0304 tomorrow. With all of my pieces now in play, it’s going to be an interesting juggling act to see how things unfold. Even though I’m the writer, I’m sometimes just as surprised at you all at the twists the story takes. How? Well, for episodes I haven’t yet outlined, I have my suspicions that certain characters are going to do certain things, but whether they do or not isn’t always my choice. I mentioned in the forum how in F0303 that John was actually supposed to make a huge blunder and that Bedell would cover for him. As y’all know, it didn’t happen that way. That surprised me. It also made for a better story not only for the episode but for event yet to come.

So, anyway…I need to get back to the outlining. The season titles are coming up soon, so the spoiler-phobic need to be wary. You’ll note that there are still three episodes without titles. There’s a reason for that: I still have no clue what happens in those episodes. I do for all the others, either in some detail or as broad brush strokes, but I do have a few gaps.

I like to think of them as opportunities. Not too long again, episode 5 was in that category, but then a storyline stood up and got my attention and that’s informing a lot of what happens afterwards. So…keep in mind that except for the first three episodes, this list is very much preliminary and subject to the whims of the writer and the potentials presented by bits of plot and character that wormed their way into episodes without having been planned (like that woman Allison visited in Palmdale…who is she?).

Ok, last paragraph before the list. Obviously you will be able to guess at what happens for at least a few episodes given the titles. Some have deliberately misleading titles just because I’ve always had fun with titles and their dubious clues to episodes. For example: “A Thousand Miles” refers to a journey of a thousand miles beginning with a single step, as the first episode for me was. “Tempest Tossed” comes from the poem that John recites to Weaver. “I’ll See You Around, Connor” were the last words Bedell spoke to John in the past. Titles help remind me of the signposts I’ve set up that I need to reach in the larger story. Once a story is written, the title might change at the last minute to better reflect the content.

So, without further ado, the title list as it now stands:

Season 3 Title List (prelim)

F0301    A Thousand Miles
F0302    Tempest Tossed
F0303    I’ll See You Around, Connor
F0304    Without a Scorecard
F0305    Mrs Worthington’s Formal Tea
F0306    Clutch
F0307    Ties and Links
F0309    Reciprocity
F0311    Tumbling From the Ski Jump
F0312    Steady on Melting Ice
F0313    Sharper Than a Terminator’s Truth
F0315    In Memory of Qin Shi Huang
F0316    We Know Why
F0317    Et Tu?
F0318    The Gospel of Allison
F0319    Whereabouts Unknown
F0320    Battle of Avila Beach, Part 1
F0321    Battle of Avila Beach, Part 2
F0322    Resurrection

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