What We Learned from WonderCon’s ‘Intro to TV Writing: From First Draft to Getting Staffed’ Panel

This weekend at WonderCon, I had the opportunity to sit in a very enlightening panel revolving around TV writing, and what it takes to move forward from your very first draft to actually getting hired. The process as a whole  was interesting and informational.

The ‘Intro to TV Writing: From First Draft to Getting Staffed’ panel featured moderator Spiro Skentzos (Arrow) and panelists Drew Greenberg (Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D), Keto Shimizu (Legends of Tomorrow) and Melinda Hsu Taylor (The Gifted).

We learned about navigating the TV spec terrain and the do’s and don’ts for writers. The panelists also shared their insight on beginners mistakes, what they look for in a writer, and what it takes for you to write a spec script that truly stands out.

If you’re interested in writing for TV and are working on your own spec script, check out what we learned!

How do you start on your first spec script?

What to look for in a script?

Writing your own original pilot:

Know of any writers mixers/events in your town? GO TO THEM.

Assistants= Gatekeepers. Once you make a connection with them, present yourself in a way that makes you stand out, as you could eventually land yourself a writing position. Writer assistants can vouch for you in their own writers’ room or another. If someone is looking to staff a writer, you might be in luck. So keep the networking going!

Interested in getting into a writers’ program?

The panelists take away from their 1st writing job:

Mistakes in writing a pilot:

Tips on final polishing before sending your spec script:

Did you find any of these tips helpful? Let us know in the comments below!

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