That'll teach me to be such a know all.
Went to that Holby commissioning meeting yesterday, armed to the teeth with guest stories, character arcs, five-act structures and practically ready to cast my six guest actors.
But things change. Programmes move on. Styles shift.
Holby is moving towards less emphasis on the guest stories. Looking back on recent episodes, it should have been obvious, but I missed it. There are still guests, but many of them are written into the ongoing serial. Those that remain don't need to be mini-dramas - they're there to help out with the serial and spice it up a bit if needed.
Without giving plot away, I can tell you that three of my regular characters have relatives visiting them in my ep. Those three relatives take up half my guest cast.
And it's not 6 guests per episode, it's 12 per block of two. And the episode before mine (to be written by the lovely Abi Bown) needs seven, and she's intent on stealing one of mine.
So, I have two guest actors, and some vastly overdeveloped plots.
Back to the drawing board, methinks.