It seems the sands in Days of our Lives' hourglass have come to a temporary halt.
The 50-year-old soap opera began contract extension negotiations this month with NBC and Sony, and according to a report by Daytime Confidential, the writing team lead by Dena Higley and Josh Griffith has been told to stop working until a new deal is reached to keep DAYS on the air.
As it stands, the 50-year-old soap has material already written that will take the show into September 2016, but until a deal is cemented between the companies to extend the soap's contract, the future of the series is up in the air -- as are the pens of its writers.
Furthermore, sources say NBC hasn't been happy with DAYS' unusual production schedule, which has the soap filming scenes half a year prior to their airdate.
"They [NBC] want the show to go back to taping closer to air," an insider told DC. "The current production model doesn't really give NBC the chance to make notes, or for DAYS to fix story and casting issues that might impact ratings."
Though both the production sticking point and the writers' situation is cause for concern, fans may not need to panic just yet: last month, NBC entertainment chairman Bob Greenblatt and entertainment president Jennifer Salke told TV Line they were happy with the state of DAYS and were "optimistic" about a renewal.
Calls to DAYS reps for comment were not returned.
UPDATE (FEBRUARY 11):
NBC renews Days of our Lives for another season.
What do you think about DAYS' writers reportedly being told to stop writing? Do you think it's a bad sign for the future of the soap? Should DAYS revert back to a more traditional production schedule? We want to hear from you -- and there are many ways you can share your thoughts.