Becoming a TV Writer

Paul Guyot has an excellent post today about becoming a TV writer and what it takes to stay in the game. Here’s a taste from his very long, very informative post:

Starting out you must have skin like a Rhino. You could get lucky and land on
a show with a very smart, very secure showrunner like I did – one who encouraged
the writer’s original voice, one who liked to teach, one who wanted to get as
much of the writer’s words into the show.

Or you could land where I’ve also been – on a show where you’re seen as a
threat, an outsider, someone who hasn’t proved themselves – and in their eyes
that means someone who didn’t go through the same shit they went through. It can
be like fraternity hell week… only lasting a whole season. You can be writing
your ass off, knowing you’re doing good work – better than others – and still
have your work slammed. Still be completely rewritten. To the point where, when
the show airs, you’re almost embarrassed to have your name on it. Not because
it’s so awful, but because there’s not a single word of yours left.

But you shut up and take it. You do your job.

My friend Paul moans all the time about shutting down his blog, but it’s because of fantastic essays about the biz like this one that I hope he never does. Keep’em coming, Paul!


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