ATT JMS: Proportions of writing

B5JMS Poster b5jms-owner at
Thu Feb 13 06:12:43 EST 1997

Subject: ATT JMS: Proportions of writing
 No. | DATE        |  FROM
s  1: Feb 11, 1997: crigler at (James B. Crigler)
*  2: Feb 13, 1997: jmsatb5 at (Jms at B5)


From: crigler at (James B. Crigler)
Lines: 35

Lo, these 20 or so years ago, I was in the middle or so of a degree in
music composition (the fact that it was a BM is *not* a reflection on
the content), and I had a class called Form and Analysis.  (I probably
studied the form of the novel in some lit class or other, but I wasn't
paying much attention.)  Anyhow, Form and Analysis was largely about
understanding the proportions of a piece (for the performer and, to a
lesser extent, for the listener) and getting the proportions right
(for the composer).  The first time I took the class I liked it so
much I just *had* to take it again (read: I didn't get it the first
time and my composition instructor made me take it again).

But I've noticed on B5 that many of the episodes are (what I call)
well proportioned; they don't just have the rescue at the end and then
the closing credits, but there is a period of reflection or emotional
payoff to most episodes.  The first episode in which I noticed this
was one of you're personal favorites (he said with just a hint of
sarcasm): "Infection."  Yeah, Sinclair gets the Ikaran war machine,
but then the conversation with the reporter pays off the whole thing.
Of course, there are exceptions (cliffhangers, multi-parters,
occasionally episodes written by others), but by and large this is
what I see.

BTW, if you've never stated it plainly, whose was the gloved hand
trying to assasinate Lyta in "Divided Loyalties"?

Jim Crigler <crigler at>
Schwartz Electro-Optics, Inc.   Voice:  (407)298-1802 x200
3404 N. Orange Blossom Tr.        Fax:  (407)290-9666
Orlando FL 32804-3498 USA


From: jmsatb5 at (Jms at B5)
Lines: 15 last, I'm well proportioned....

I've always preferred the arc, both inside an episode, and between
episodes, and even in the course of a season, where there's the resolution
and then there's time to consider, reflect, and show the impact of these
things.  It's not just about solving the technical problem that's
about the people who solve the problem and how they are affected by the
problems and solutions.


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