David Nevins: What I Read

A Hollywood gatekeeper explains how he sifts through the glut of scripts, rough cuts, TV shows and movies every day. 

This article is from the archive of our partner .

How do people deal with the torrent of information pouring down on us all? What sources can't they live without? We regularly reach out to prominent figures in media, entertainment, politics, the arts, and the literary world to hear their answers. This is drawn from an email exchange with veteran television producer and executive David Nevins, currently the president of entertainment at Showtime

First thing I look at in the morning is my email on my iPhone which includes a digest of clippings on the L.A. mayoral election and Jason Hirschhorn’s Media REDEFined newsletter, a curated digest of interesting articles on media, tech, and pop culture. Then I check my Twitter feed — some sports, some politics and news, and a lot of people who write about television.

I get the dead tree versions of Los Angeles Times and New York Times delivered to my house for breakfast, and I watch CBS morning news, ESPN's SportsCenter, and CNBC on the mornings that I work out.

I listen to Howard Stern, NPR (KPCC, not KCRW), and Jim Rome on the radio on the way to work, which I navigate with the Waze app on my iPhone.

At the office, I check Deadline Hollywood, The Drudge Report, Politco, and Marketwatch websites on my desktop throughout the day.

For magazines: I read the New Yorker, Vanity Fair, The Atlantic, GQ and New York magazine.  Sometimes in print, sometimes on my iPad.

One of my favorite media personalities is Jonathan Gold, an L.A. Times food writer specializing in obscure neighborhood eats. I also think Steve Martin and Gary Janetti are two of the funniest tweeters I know.

What I don't like is people who tweet too much outside their area of expertise. I don’t care what you ate last night or your take on the San Antonio Spurs. Another thing that bugs me is the New York Times’ penchant for publishing articles at least once a month about how lousy life in LA is.

Then, of course, a big part of my media diet includes things directly related to my job. I read scripts on my iPad using the GoodReader app. I watch promos for Showtime on my desktop at work or on my iPad at home and give notes to our New York-based marketing department. I have a few pet peeves for promos. I don’t like when our produced launch spots try to mimic the film style of the show itself. I also don’t like when the music in a comedy spot tries too hard to be cute or funny. (Although my marketing team would never do either of these.) I read the Showtime clippings package around 4 o'clock every afternoon. (We have a service that culls all published articles that mention either Showtime or our individual shows.) I generally prefer to watch rough cuts of our shows on DVD on a big screen at home. I watch non-Showtime television mostly off my DVR and I watch sports live. The last thing I look at before I go to sleep is either my Twitter feed or the Daily Show.

This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.