Industry sources say studios producing skeins for Big Four nets are pushing for cuts of as much as 10%-15% in the writing budget for returning series, while new shows will start out with smaller staffs than first-year shows in recent seasons. Where skeins once had as many as 10-12 writers, not including the showrunner(s), the new norm is becoming six to eight.As Littleton continues:
The big unknown in all of this is how the cuts will affect the quality of shows. Execs stress that making trims where possible on writing staffs help keep onscreen production values high. But the thinning of the scribe herd will undoubtedly put more pressure on showrunners, who might've otherwise delegated some rewrites and story-related tasks to their more experienced lieutenants.