This Is How "The Wire" Creator David Simon Builds A Writers Room
"There's nobody in there that woke up one morning and said, 'I want to be a TV writer.' And that's why I'm interested in them."
He works with the same writers again and again.
We looked at every writing credit from every TV show and miniseries David Simon has produced. Here's a breakdown of the people who have written for more than one project.
He finds people who can write about their own experiences.
William F. Zorzi was a reporter at the Baltimore Sun before writing for The Wire.
After The Wire, Simon produced the HBO miniseries Generation Kill, which was based on a book by journalist Evan Wright.
Wright, who embedded with a Marine Corps reconnaissance battalion during the 2003 invasion of Iraq, co-wrote the miniseries.
Lolis Eric Elie, a New Orleans–born author and filmmaker, was a story editor for Treme.
And chef Anthony Bourdain wrote the restaurant scenes for the show's second season.
He looks for source material and writers from outside the TV industry.
"I tend not to hire people who are trying to become television writers. I tend to hire novelists or people who have never written television."
Simon's latest miniseries, Show Me a Hero, is based on Lisa Belkin's book about desegregating public housing in Yonkers, New York.
For an upcoming project, Simon asked journalist Ta-Nehisi Coates and novelist James McBride to help write a script based on Taylor Branch’s trilogy America in the King Years.
And then he puts them in a room and encourages them to argue.