Big shots like Shawn Ryan, David E. Kelley, and Shonda Rhimes all have pilots in the can that don't seem to stray much farther from the shows that made them the big shots that they are today.
For instance, Ryan, creator of the groundbreaking FX cop drama 'The Shield,' has another cop drama premiering with Fox called 'Ridealong.' Kelley, the writer/producer behind 'The Practice' and 'Boston Legal,' has created a reality drama for NBC called 'Kindred.' Even Rhimes, the woman behind ABC's 'Grey's Anatomy,' has another medical drama show for ABC called 'Off the Map.' Is ABC looking to create an all-medical soap opera cable channel in the coming year?
It's an odd situation when you are not only a member of the Writers Guild and want to support your fellow writers, but you're also the showrunner of the show you write for. Tina Fey is in that situation at 30 Rock, though she's been on the picket lines from the beginning.
Another producer who is in that situation is Carlton Cuse over at Lost. There were mysterious rumors (just like Lost itself!) going around the industry that Cuse had actually gone back to work on the show. To make sure there was no confusion as to where he stands, Cuse sent out an e-mail to everyone explaining everything.