As a thirty-plus years soap fan, I tend not to write about reality shows - for obvious reasons. (I did make an exception for Russian Dolls, but I explained myself there.)
Now it's time for another explanation.
In addition to soaps, I've also worked in figure skating coverage for ABC, TNT, ESPN and NBC. I wrote a series of five figure skating mysteries for Berkley Prime Crime which I am currently turning into enhanced e-books primarily as an example of how soap operas can work in this brand new multimedia, text and video format. My five skating mysteries were written serialized drama style, in that each book can stand on its own, but some characters are featured in multiple books, with their stories evolving from one to the next. (Check out a sample for only $.99 cents at: http://tinyurl.com/SkateCrime).
I've always thought the skating world would make a wonderful soap opera (I even developed a television pilot for a production company once on that very theme).
And now it looks as if Lifetime agrees with me. Only instead of a scripted series, they're going reality. I received the following yesterday:
Collins Avenue is seeking kids (ages 6-13) and their moms, along with their coach(es), who are serious about competing and winning ice skating competitions. Moms or Dads must be actively involved in helping their kids train and prepare for each competition. It must be a top priority for these families but it doesn’t have to be their only interest. Collins Avenue is seeking families and coaches with strong personalities, talent, passion and the desire to win! This is a very short casting process so please submit NOW! If you or anyone you know are interested in this TV project, please email firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com
(Ed note: I'm sure the success of Lifetime's similarly themed Dance Moms has nothing to do with this...)