Keep TV characters believable by ensuring their actions are consistent.
What does a Continuity Writer do?
Just like a good novel, television programs show the growth and changes of a character. The wardrobe team, Make-up Artists, and Writers work to evolve the character’s look, dialogue, and personality as the character develops.
All these details can be a lot to juggle, and, if handled wrong, can be confusing for a viewer. The Continuity Writer makes sure that doesn’t happen by reviewing every detail of the characters and plot, then making changes in order to keep the flow.
As a Continuity Writer, you commonly work for a Television Executive. Television shows aren’t filmed in sequential order, so you ensure a character doesn’t use information that he doesn’t learn for a few more scenes. You also review facts and make sure the story line flows. For example, you make that the character who vowed never to wear pink (ten episodes ago) doesn’t don rose-colored gloves.
Your Continuity Writer duties hold you accountable for knowing the characters’ history, beliefs, personalities, dreams, hang-ups, weaknesses, fears, and likes. In addition to making sure the characters grow at the appropriate rate, you work in conjunction with the Continuity Supervisor to ensure that the scene is “continual” with previous scenes. For example, you make sure it doesn’t abruptly turn from day to night, or sunny to rainy. This helps keep the viewer engulfed in the story without distraction.
You may also be responsible for writing show previews, station announcements, and advertising content.