I Play One on TV

I'm recalling an old show called Thirty Something from some twenty years ago. One of the women, the blond one that was struggling with ovarian cancer, was a children's book writer and illustrator. She was struggling to work and is very tired from her chemo session but the deal is, she wrote the book with her ten year old son and he is upset when she changed it to suit editorial corrections. So of course, she has to choose between her relationship with her son (who may have to grow up without her) and her need and desire to finish the book and get published before she (possibly) dies. Anyone remember this? I was really into it at the time even though I was already forty-something.
Freddie Levin


farah said...

I remember Thirty Something. I was an early Twenty Something at the time, and thought those people complained and moaned a LOT. Then I turned "Thirtysomething" and knew why!

She was Nancy (in Nancy and Eliot) I knew even then that the whole ease of that children's book was fiction.

I had just started taking illustration classes and had joined SCBWI and was learning how it was done. I was miffed out how easy it made the whole illustration process look.

The original art was that of Michael Hague if my memory is correct.
~ farah

farah said...

I meant miffed AT how easy...

But I kind of like that phrase "Miffed Out" now.

Better than "P-ssed Off" I must say.


rebecca said...

I liked that show, even though we called it "The Whiners" because that was all they seemed to do. Plus it was supposed to be set in Philadelphia, where I live -- actually the very neighborhoods where I live, in the northwest part of the city, Mt. Airy and Chestnut Hill. So it was fun to see stuff that they actually shot in Philadelphia, and also fun to catch mistakes, like palm trees cropping up in the neighborhood.
Farah, you're totally right about the art being Michael Hague's. Wanna start a thread about Michael Hague's work? No, no, no. Don't wanna be mean, and anyway, he must be doing something right. He sure sells a ton o' books. And I do look at his work, because it's fascinating to me to see how he has adapted several of the painting styles of 19th century master illustrators like Dulac, Charles Robinson and the truly luminous Arthur Rackham.

farah said...

Rebecca, those palm trees were us! They filmed much of thirty-something here in Pasadena, CA and South Pasadena. Actually, the show was very reflective of the lifestyle, people and homes here at the time.

It's crazy how much they film in area. They've always filmed in Pas and S. Pas...but now I live in Altadena above Pasadena at the base of the mountains. Every turn I make I am pass a shooting of a show that I know or watch. Even my son recognizes them. We have CSI NY, (with NYFD fire trucks and ambulances), NUMBERS, NCIS, and Brothers and Sisters. Plus about 5 other movies or tv shows being taped. This is in a radius of 2 miles on the way to take my son to school only! We play a game of trying to decode their signs to guess what they are filming.

paula said...

Thirty Something was 20 years ago? Wow, I do feel old now. I was in art school. I loved that show!
I totally forgot that she was a children's book illustrator.
Wonder what happened to all those people? I know one guy is on that new Studio 60 show (and was also in The West Wing). Funny, you get attached to a show, then miss it when its gone.
I still miss Northern Exposure!


farah said...

Yeah I know. I nearly fainted when I read "twenty years ago" myself. But it's true.SCARY!

Ken Olin (Michael) directs a lot of television shows. Mel Harris (Hope) does and occassional Lifetime movie.

Patricia Wettig (Nancy)is in a LOT these days. She plays the long time mistress of the dead patriarch in Brother's and Sisters (similar to thirtysomething and I think Ken Olin who is also her husband also directs). Patricia also plays the vice president (now to be president) on Prison Break, and I suspect she is editor (who is presumed deceased) on Ugly Betty. *yeah...I watch too much tv.

Timothy Busfield (Studio 60 and West Wing)...

yeah...you do get attached. Wow...Hope and Michael's kids would be in their 20's...weird...what where they Janey and Leo??

rebecca said...

Hey, let's collect more movies and books that feature children's illustrators. I was telling a children's book author/illustrator pal of mine about this thread on the Dust Blog, and he mentioned a book written by Anne Rice (under her pseudonym Anne Fleming) called Belinda. It concerns a very accomplished middle-aged children's illustrator (known for his beautiful, traditional watercolor paintings) who becomes obsessed with his sixteen year old model. Heavy stuff, in the Rice-ian tradition apparently.
I figure I ought to check out, along with my own sixteen year old, given that she is currently writing a romance novel and it's good research. (Did you know it's NaNoWriMo -- National Novel Writing Month? www.nanowrimo.com Blair and I both signed up for it. I wrote 600 words and had to quit because of work demands. She's going strong, middle of week two, and has over 20,000 words written.)
Anyway, anybody ever read "Belinda"?