Since we are at the beginning of a new year (2012 for those that aren't aware) and I am in the beginning of what I intend to be a very creatively fruitful and life-supporting enterprise, I'd like to take a moment to talk about the evolution of the Erick Davidson story series.
I actually created the Erick Davidson character in high school. At the time, I was just becoming aware of my interest in television as more than just something to watch and started conceptualizing my own television shows -- complete with episode ideas and even Emmy victories.
Collectively, all these shows encompassed various stages of lifes from high school to college to young adulthood, singlehood, parenthood, middle age, old age and retirement with genres ranging from comedy to drama to variety to anthology.
One of these concepts was "My Name is Erick Davidson", prophetically premised about a single guy in his thirties. It was inadvertently inspired by a classmate of mine who was sitting next to me in class spreading Chap Stick on a dollar bill. It was strange and so I built a show around him.
That was freshman year.
The idea lay dormant until my senior year of college when I took a course called TV Program Packaging. At the end, we had to create and develop an original series idea. I revisited the Erick Davidson concept but revised the premise to be about a 24-year-old from New Jersey who moves to Los Angeles. I then wrote a treatment with character bios, a half-hour pilot and outlines for three episodes.
That was in 2000.
In a case of life imitating art, I made the move from New Jersey to Los Angeles the following year. Outside of coming up with episode ideas, the by now more fully developed concept once again lay dormant until I launched my blog in June of 2009.
At that time I started fleshing out my episode ideas into short stories and posting them to my blog. A year later, after my 20th story, a friend of mine suggested I start writing AS Erick, which I did beginning with the blog's first anniversary. Those first 20 stories encompassed much of Erick's first year in LA but once I started writing as Erick, the storytelling jumped to the present day and was based more on my own experiences.
That first blogisode was called "The Elevator":
Friday afternoon, I left the office in a bit of a huff having been delayed by a last-minute proposal that had to be ready for a Tuesday morning meeting and ate into three hours of my long weekend. As I got into the elevator, I sent out a barrage of frustrated texts to several friends.
In the midst of my texting, the elevator stopped at a lower floor. As I started to get off, I nearly collided into a man trying to get on. It was then that I noticed I was about to get off on the wrong floor. The man chuckled as I backed onto the elevator.
"I had planned to leave about three hours ago," I said.
"Yeah, me too," he replied.
The elevator stopped on the ground floor. As it opened, the man said to me, "you look like you need a drink."
I noticed he had pressed a button for the parking garage. "Yeah. I'll probably hit up a happy hour near my apartment."
"Where are you headed?"
"The Essex House in Hollywood."
"Would you like a lift?"
Adam and I made our way across town to the Essex House, where we talked for about six hours despite the fact that he had to wake up early the next morning to drive home to Arizona for the weekend. We exchanged numbers and have been texting all weekend.
Anticipating people asking me if such-and-such really happened, the first two blogisodes had a "here's what actually happened" tag to them that I thought was a good idea but quickly abandoned:
But here's what actually happened....I got off the ground floor. "Adam" and I wished each other a great weekend. I met up with a couple of friends from work at the Abbey for Happy Hour and had a few cocktails, an appetizer and frozen yogurt.
I did, however, give out a personal card to a feller who had responded with a "good night" after I shouted a collective "good night" to West Hollywood.
He has not called yet, but come to think of it --- his name may have actually been Adam.
In August of 2010, I read that Frontiers Magazine was looking for bloggers for their website. I pitched the Erick stories to them, which they accepted and began posting.
In January of 2011, I discovered The New Gay Dot Net from an article in The Advocate. I reviewed their site and submitted a pitch to them as well to post the Erick stories. They also accepted and began posting.
To avoid confusion, the Erick stories for Frontiers and The New Gay Dot Net were written in the third person under the title of "Starring Erick Davidson". Now that I had committed myself to writing two Erick stories per week in one voice while still writing AS Erick for the blog in a different voice, I decided to stop writing AS Erick and focus on developing stories ABOUT Erick.
In November of 2011, The New Gay Dot Net shut down so now I am only writing one Erick story per week for this site, which also still posts to the Frontiers site.
Now that I am over 165 stories in, I'm happy that the Erick stories now have more depth and substance to them than those early stories. As for those original 20 "first year" stories, they are being reformatted into an e-book that I will submit to Amazon.
Original Fiction from a Sitcom Mind > The Halls of Shambala > I Am Erick Davidson - An Original Short Story Series >