Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Making Masterpiece by Rebecca Eaton, a Viking Book

I spent a lot of time in Britain growing up.  My dad is Welsh and his parents owned a farm there while I was a child.  And I spent every other summer there, walking the fields and eating Cadbury chocolate.  That time was magical.

And so was Masterpiece Theatre.   I read (too much) and love the British influence as I grew up steeped in it.  The (MT) stories are deep, with background beauty and fabulous acting.  Life comes alive in the vividness of a narrative.

Rebecca Eaton was executive producer of the shows for 28 of its 42 years on air.  What I love best about the book is how she melds her personal narrative with that of the show and participants itself.

Media impacts us.  But it impacts us on a personal level.  Which is what this book impresses upon us.  The show was underfunded, had many "dads" and did more with less.  It excelled but within the context of those engaged in making it work.  Sometimes stories do matter more than production.  Eaton explains why.

This book brings (famous) people and events together and makes them both digestible and fun.   Making stories is messy, personal and unpredictable.  Reading about the process is just plain exciting.

But let's not forget the importance of this book and the work behind it.  Media evolves, faster and faster.  But good stories linger.  What is a good story?  Eaton knows.

I loved reading the personal narratives in the book as we learn how producer and show co-exist.  The book is enchanting, provided you're interested in the topic.  Eaton is a great personality with a lot to say and I'm so thrilled to have met her, even if only in a book (hint, hint)

But fast forward to today, if you're trying to understand quality content.  You just found your source…ex hype.  Please report back if you read this book!

Absolutely recommend this book!  Loved it.

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