TV Writer Kirk Moore Gives Advice on Writing for TV, His Personal Experiences and A Glimpse into the Writers’ Room

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Kirk Moore

We always glorify the Actors who grace our TV screens every night but not a lot of light is shined on the people who bring it to fruition. There are so many parts that make a TV show but I personally believe none are more important than the people who are actually writing the scripts. Meet Kirk Moore, a writer who has written on TV shows like “13 Reasons Why and American Crime. He also recently announced that he will be joining the writing staff of a comic book tv series. We spoke with Moore to learn more about TV Writing and his personal experience in the industry.

When did you realize that you wanted to write stories for a living?

I started writing in high school. I lost the vision in my right eye after a freak accident. I was very sensitive to light and couldn’t do much physical activity, so I started writing to get my feelings out. It began with poetry. Angry poetry. Then I began writing short stories and short plays. Those stories later became one-man and my first original theatre production. That was just after my senior year at Morehouse. So by the time I was 22, I knew I wanted to write for a living.

What was the first TV show you wrote for and how was that experience?

My first writing gig was American Crime. I was a Staff Writer on Season 2; then Story Editor on Season 3. I didn’t have any experience in scripted television, so I didn’t know what to expect. But the other writers on staff were cool and welcoming. We have a very seasoned and diverse writing team. John Ridley, our showrunner, was very specific about his expectations. That made the process easier for me. I can follow instructions. In the room, I pitched as much as I could and found ways to incorporate my personal experiences into the story. I was lucky enough to write and produce my own episode. That is a big deal as a first-time writer.

How do you get inspired to write specific stories that may not be directly related to you?

I read. A lot. I also make an effort to interact with people different from me. I think it helps.

13 Reasons Why became a very controversial Netflix show. Why did you feel that story needed to be told?

Because it’s an important story. Suicide and bullying are important issues that need to be addressed in multiple circles and outlets. I also hope we showed that bullying is not just one thing. We all hurt differently. What hurts me may not affect someone else in the same way, but that shouldn’t discredit how it made me feel. I’m always online, and I remember reading that Hannah was too sensitive. Eh. That’s not for us to decide.

Can you explain what happens in the writers’ room?

How much time do you have? All writers’ rooms are different. But, for the most part, we put our brains together to create character and story. We pitch ideas. We share our personal experiences to deepen those ideas and stories. And, we eat.

What is the biggest challenge you found when getting your start in the industry?

Being comfortable and opening up about my life experiences.

Excluding the shows that you have written for, what shows did you watch last year?

There’s so much television to watch, so I watch a lot of television. I really enjoyed This Is Us and Queen Sugar. No shows can make me cry like those two. The Leftovers was great. There’s a show on SundanceTV called The A Word. It’s a really good family drama about autism. American Vandal was just crazy good and so damn funny. I love Insecure. Oh. And, Judge Judy. I watch lots of Judge Judy.

What advice would you give to someone who is interested in becoming a writer for TV programming?

Write. Prepare yourself. Write. Learn the business of television. Write. Enter contests and fellowship programs. Write. Don’t stop writing.

What can we look forward to from Kirk Moore?

A lot more writing.

Kirk Moore 2

Make sure to follow Kirk Moore on Instagram.

Photo Credit: @PhotosByJamaal

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