Help me write for the teevee!
August 23, 2019 7:33 AM   Subscribe

My friend has happened into an Executive Producer role for a new syndicated daytime talk show which will be produced in a major non-California Western city. (Think lifestyle, health, food, good vibes). The star/creator has won an Emmy for an earlier daytime show and is a veteran of TV and radio. They want me to be a writer! NOW WHAT?

I'm an accomplished print journalist with a number of great national publications under my belt, but have never done TV. I tossed out a dozen or so segment ideas off the top of my head and they liked them all. How does one write for that? Research, give the host talking points and questions? It's not like it would be a video script. (Which I have written before.)

NOW what? I have zero idea what salary, what title, what the day-to-day of working will look like. (Five 60-minute shows per week, 3 maybe 4 segments a show.)

TV writers of MeFi, please help me get and rock this gig! Any and all suggestions welcome.
posted by anonymous to Media & Arts (1 answer total) 4 users marked this as a favorite
It’s been a very long time, so this may be extremely outdated advice. When I wrote for reality shows there was a specific format we were asked to write in (not like a regular script, but not just research notes). Could you just ask the show runner or producer to send you a sample script so you can see the format they want? They know you are not a TV writer, so it won’t be strange.

I was paid a pittance as a non-union writer for not very high profile shows (maybe twice minimum wage?). I think it’s likely even worse now. I would ask them what they pay (we were paid by the script/segment). You can always negotiate from there, and probably should, but it’s a good idea to let them make the first move.

So, basically I’m just suggesting you ask your friend these questions.
posted by rainydayfilms at 3:23 PM on August 23

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