The new screenwriters can choose to start their career as a writer for the radio industry. This industry also helps the newcomers to have an essence of the screenwriting career in the industry. The screenwriting job for radio programs is relatively easy because it is not related to any visual element. This is considered as an advantage for the writers, but at the same time, it produces some problems. The writers find it very hard to make a name for them in the mainstream industry through the career of screenwriting for radio. Most of the people are attracted by the visual elements implemented in the scripts. Radio industry does not give any such scope. Therefore, it is often observed that the writer does not get the deserving and expected appraisal from the audience (BBC, 2013). It produces a big challenge to the writers.
Another current issue is that the radio industry is losing its consumer and audience base to some extent because new technologies and modern strategies are making the visual platforms better than ever (Myers, 2012). A large portion of the audience has already shifted to other mediums of the media industry. The remaining audiences are trying to be loyal and find interest in this industry. It seems to be quite difficult.
The most concerning issue is the payment factor. The payment for the screenwriters is very low in this industry. As there is no need of visual element and promotional activities, the producers and the authorities do not expect much from the outcome of the radio dramas or other programs (Street, 2015). As a result, the screenwriters are paid a very low amount of money that does not justify their talent or quality of work. Although there are few writers who earn handsomely by screenwriting for the radio, the scenario is quite problematic and troublesome for the majority of the scriptwriters.
If the budget of a film is more than £2M, then the screenwriter is guaranteed a payment of £42,120. If the budget of a feature film is more than £2M, then the screenwriter receives a minimum payment of £31,200. There is a difference in the payment rates for screenwriters in the television industry also. The BBC has set some standard payment rates for teleplays, serials, dramatizations, adaptations and educational dramas. The lowest payment is for the adaptations where the screenwriter is paid £78 for per minute of the screen time, and the highest payment is for the teleplays where the scriptwriter gets a payment of £192 for every single minute of the screen time. The ITV has also released its standard payment rates for the screenwriters. The screenwriter is paid £13,283 for an hour of the original teleplay, £10,395 for an hour of the serials, £3,465 for half an hour of the long-running television series (Industrial Scripts, 2013). These rates are lucrative and it attracts the screenwriters. These are the minimum pay rates. There are instances when a scriptwriter received an extremely healthy payment package of £5M for writing the script of an extraordinary film.