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Although they get all the credit for the best lines — whether it’s “No soup for you!” from Seinfeld, “Danger, Will Robinson!” from Lost in Space, or “D’oh!” from The Simpsons — don’t thank Actors for your favorite TV zingers. Instead, thank the Television Writers who create them.
There are two main types of Television Writers. If you’re a Nonfiction TV Writer, you write for documentary and news programs. In that case, you act a lot like a Journalist, researching stories and interviewing subjects. You then write scripts for Newscasters, and other TV personalities, like TV Hosts and Voice-Over Artists.
If you’re a Fiction TV Writer, on the other hand, you create situations, characters, and dialogue for scripted TV series.
Either way, you’ll probably start your television career as a Staff Writer, then work your way up the chain of command to Writer/Producer. In this position, you’re both a Television Writer — in charge or writing dialog and storylines — as well as a Television Producer, in charge of managing staff and production processes. (The most senior Writer/Producer is the Executive Producer, sometimes known as the Head Writer.)
No matter your seniority, you often write alongside other Television Writers, since TV episodes are typically written in teams. You also generate plot ideas, oversee casting, and — if you do your job well — walk the red carpet when your TV series wins an award!