6

Creative Writer

at Children's TV

AWM

- Burbank, California

- 7/29/20
Job/Career Demand
3.0
Positive Impact
5.0
Satisfaction
3.0
Advancement/Growth
3.0
Creativity
5.0
Work-Life Balance
2.0
Compensation & Benefits
3.0
Work Environment
4.0
Total Compensation
$60,000 - $200,000
Years of experience
10.0
Recommended Education
No Education

Describe the path you took to become a creative writer

Breaking in can be hard! Use every contact you have to break in and get someone to take a chance on you in your first job! I started in accounting on an ABC TV show, which was an interview I got thru my cousin. Then I became an executive assistant to two executive producers on a Nickelodeon show, which was an interview I got thru a friend from junior high school. From there, I moved up and became a coordinator, development exec, associate producer, writer. It's important to find a place/team of people where you can learn and grow. When you become a writer, you work freelance, so it's from job to job. So building good relationships along the way and a strong rolodex is paramount.

What's a day in the life of a creative writer?

Writing a TV show for kid's TV. It starts as a premise then outline then script. Each round goes thru approvals with the network for notes. If you have a show to pitch, you take it to pitch meetings. Often outside of day-to-day, you do a lot of drinks and coffees to build relationships for more potential work. This is not a 9-5 job - this is a lifestyle in order to be successful.

What's the best part of being a creative writer?

While it is hard, it is also incredibly rewarding to write something that ends up on screen. This industry is goofy and fun and filled with dreamers. It's also an industry where ANYTHING CAN HAPPEN, which is incredibly motivating and exciting. Life is short, so I encourage anyone to chase their dreams if they are willing to do the work and have passion for it. You will meet some interesting creative people and definitely live an adventure - you're not stuck in a cubicle if that is your fear. I would not deter anyone from chasing this career path - just know the pitfalls and save your coins for the ups and downs and be a self-starter as far as generating new material to sell.

What are some perks of your job?

Meet celebrities, go on TV sets, you can get paid well once we reach a certain level.

What's the downside of being a creative writer? Words of caution?

This career path is unstable - you can get work for a few months and then none the rest of the year. You can spend years developing a TV show and then pitch it around and not sell it, which is more common than not. A lot of sweat equity with minimal guarantee. This career path is for a dreamer who LOVES this, not someone who just wants to strike it rich because there isn't a clear formula like other career paths, and MOST people do not strike it rich. It's the wild west. You can also get terrible network notes that you have to deal with that can kill the story you want to tell. There are a lot of volatile personalities, so you have to learn to navigate dealing with them.

What's the earning potential? Entry-level? Mid-level? Senior-level?

Salary year-to-year can vary quite a bit. I've made $60k, $100k, or $200k. It's super volatile since it's all freelance.

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