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Writing For Television

By Expert Author: Eric Hughes

The myriad of channels has made writing for television a sought after profession. Television, among all the careers in media, is probably the most disorganized since there are no well-defined parameters for employing people. Yet it continues to attract personnel of every caliber. With the pace at which the entertainment industry is marching ahead, there is an escalating demand for trained and motivated writers. Students have many more options today to learn writing for television as a profession.
This sector is booming, with newer channels being added and the number of shows constantly increasing. The shows range from soap operas, reality shows, talent shows, dramas, documentaries, science fiction, and more. There are many TV shows that run for years, offering writers to span their creativity over a long time. The following pointers can help you to better yourself in this field:
Do your homework and watch TV critically. Watch everything and anything, ones you dislike as well as the ones you like. Jot down notes as you spend hours watching the television.
Choose your genre. Choose a genre in which you are interested. This could fall under the broad category of fiction or non-fiction.
Prepare a spec or a pilot episode. Exhibit your talent by writing out a sample and get it into the hands of executives who are the decision makers. Speculative writing is the best way to gain entry as either a freelancer or a full-time writer for an individual or production company.
Know your audience. Target a specific group and stay attuned to their demands. The attention span varies among individual groups of people. The commercials aired can provide insight into who is being addressed.
Prepare a pitch. The industry executives will ask you for a pitch before they make up their minds whether to give you a break or not. When writing for television, your pitch must be extremely catchy to make a mark on people in authoritative positions.
Create strong characters. Your airtime is limited, and the actors must not mince words; they should deliver crisp and meaningful dialogues.
Get started. Write and re-write, making sure to include something interesting for each character. Begin with a teaser and end with a tag that will be long remembered. Sprinkle some spice over your plots and etch out a name for yourself on the small screen.
In all probability, the art of writing for television is already present in you and need only to be tapped. The long hours that a person spends glued to the TV are not totally wasted. Learning through self-research is more educational than attending a course specifically aimed at honing the skills of writing for television.

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