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TV Writing I: 10-Week Workshop (Self-Paced))

Start creating your TV script for an existing show in this comprehensive workshop. This beginner-friendly course covers everything from episode ideas and character development to the technical format for TV scripts and the real-world process of writing TV shows. Get ready to take your TV writing skills to the next level.

  • Beginner
  • 18 and older
  • $464
  • Earn 10% Rewards
  • Price Lock
  • Online Classroom
  • 47 hours & 30 minutes over 2 sessions

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  • $464
  • 47 hours & 30 minutes over 2 sessions
  • Price includes $25 registration fee. Class is accessible anytime within the session dates.
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  • Tue, Jul 09 at 12:00am - 11:45pm
  • Tue, Sep 17 at 12:00am - 11:45pm
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Class Description

Description

What you'll learn in this tv writing class:

This course gives you a firm grounding in the basics of TV writing craft and gets you writing a TV script for an existing show.


Course components:

  • Lectures
  • Writing exercises
  • Workshopping of student projects (each student presenting work two times)

TV Writing I is for beginners or anyone who wants to brush up on the fundamentals. Students must be 18 years or older.


Please Note:

TV writers either work on the staff of an existing series or they create an original show. To break into the business, you need samples of your work—either episodes of existing shows or original scripts, the latter more desirable these days.


TV I focuses on writing “spec” scripts for existing shows, which is the best way to learn how TV episodes work. TV II focuses on creating an original series and “pilot” episode.


These courses cover “scripted” shows, as opposed to reality TV.


Course Syllabus:


Introduction to TV Writing:

Writing samples—specs for existing shows, original work. Elements of a TV series—type, premise, episodes (self-contained/serialized, storylines, signatures), characters, setting, tone, secret theme. How to choose a show to spec. Studying shows.


Episode Ideas:

Getting storyline ideas. Finding ideas inside and outside the show. Vertical exploration of regular characters. Interaction of multiple storylines. Using the expected and unexpected.


Mapping It Out:

Finding the storyline beats. Plot basics. Prose outlines. Segments. Step outlines. Tips for outlining.


Character:

Understanding the regular characters. Desire—super objective, episode objective. Strengths/flaws. Personality. Relationships.


Format/Description:

Examining the technical format for TV scripts. How to handle description.


Scene:

Scene defined. Scene guidelines—importance, desire, structure, character. Scenes analyzed—short, medium, long.


Dialogue:

Naturalistic dialogue. The art of compression. Stylized dialogue. Lingo. Character through dialogue. Subtext. Stage directions.


Drama/Comedy:

Drama—character complexity, emotion, suspense, action. Comedy—character folly, extreme situations, verbal wit, physical humor. Comedy/Drama—finding the right balance.


The Process:

The real-world process of writing TV shows. Your process-beating it out, breaking story, scenes, transitions, length, finishing touches. Making sure a script is ready.


The Business:

Building a collection of samples. Getting in the door-connections, non-writing jobs in the business, agents/managers, production companies. Who to contact. Query letter. Response. Meetings. Ways to maximize your chances.


Content may vary among individual classes.


Important:

Schedule posted is the Start and End date of the class. You may access the class at any time, day or night, within the schedule provided. Please see Online Class Delivery for more details.

Remote Learning

This course is available for "remote" learning and will be available to anyone with access to an internet device with a microphone (this includes most models of computers, tablets). Classes will take place with a "Live" instructor at the date/times listed below.

Upon registration, the instructor will send along additional information about how to log-on and participate in the class.

Refund Policy

All Classes (except One-day and Zoom Intensives and Write-Ins):

  • For a refund or credit, contact us three business days or more before your class starts. You can either choose to hold a full credit with us good for one year on other Gotham classes OR you can opt for a refund less a $25 administrative fee and your $25 registration fee ($50 total).
  • If you need to withdraw after your class has started (or two business days before it starts), you won’t receive a refund, but you’re welcome to a Gotham credit less the price of Week 1 and your $25 registration fee, but we need to hear from you three business days or more before Week 2 meets for that to happen. After that point, no credits are available.

One-day and Zoom Intensives:

  • You may reschedule a One-day or Zoom Intensive one time, if you notify us two business days before the class begins. After that first reschedule, there is a $25 rescheduling fee.
  • If you notify us three business days or more before your class begins, rescheduling is free. If you notify us less than three business days before your class begins, there is a $25 rescheduling fee. If you don’t notify us until after your class begins, we cannot reschedule you.
  • You may get a refund (minus a $50 fee) if you notify us three business days or more before your class begins.

Write-Ins:

  • If you withdraw 1 business day or more before it begins, you’re welcome to a full credit good for one year toward another Write-In. No refunds are available.
  • If you simply don’t show up and don’t notify us in advance, you forfeit your money.

A few more things:

  • Credits are valid for one year and cannot be changed into refunds down the road.
  • Simply not attending class or notifying the instructor does not mean you've officially withdrawn.
  • Some exceptions are made on a case-by-case basis for medical emergencies with a doctor's note.
  • Refunds take up to six weeks to process.

Please understand, we can't issue a refund after classes have started, even if you miss your first class. Similarly, we can't offer you a credit one day before your second class or after that. We understand that other obligations get in the way of attending class, but these policies allow us to get other interested writers into class early enough to have a good experience, and this allows us to offer our classes at a reasonable price.

Important Notes:

  • Students are allowed to join a class in the second week.
  • Only those who pay the tuition in full can be guaranteed a place in class.
  • Class dates and times may be subject to change. A substitute may be assigned or make-up classes added to the end of the term.
  • Auditing and the recording of classes are not allowed.
  • For all classes, students receive a record of payment and registration.
  • Gotham reserves the right to remove any student at our discretion.
  • Gotham does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, sex, religion, disability, socioeconomic status, national or ethnic origin, sexual orientation, age, or marital status.
  • Our courses are not intended to provide instruction that will result in the student's acquisition of occupational skills.

In any event where a customer wants to cancel their enrollment and is eligible for a full refund, a 5% processing fee will be deducted from the refund amount.

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Gotham Writers Workshop

Gotham Writers Workshop is a creative home in New
York City and Online where writers develop their craft and come together in the
spirit of discovery and fellowship. We’ve been teaching creative writing to
students since 1993.




We believe that everyone has a story to tell.
Indeed, many stories. Keep your...

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