All posts by A.C. Smith

Five Years of London Playwrights’ Blog – and what’s next!

Five years ago today, London Playwrights’ Blog published its first blog post. And what a ride it has been!

In the past five years, we have:

  • Shared 2,000+ opportunities
  • Published 255 Weekly Roundups – never missing a week
  • Racked up over a million page views
  • Received visits from 150,000+ playwrights
  • Generated over 100 pieces of original content
  • Run a new writing festival involving more than 40 creatives
  • Launched our #WrAP Challenge with 150+ playwrights
  • Welcomed nearly 200 members

When Kimberley Andrews and I first decided that playwrights needed a place to find all the most exciting opportunities gathered together in one place, we would never have dreamed where this path would take us – or all the other exciting ways we would find to work with emerging playwrights.

We are so grateful to each and every one of you who have read the blog. You’re the reason we’ve kept on doing this work, and we really appreciate having had the opportunity to support your writing over the years.

Woo hoo! What’s next?

Geralt via Pixabay CC Licence (https://pixabay.com/photo-1647341/)

First, we’re planning to celebrate!

We’re planning a birthday party

After all, you only turn five once! This writer-friendly event will be open to our members and readers, and should be really good fun. We look forward to sharing more of the exciting details soon.

We’re inviting readers to share their stories

We’re opening this up to our community of readers, looking for people’s personal experiences of how London Playwrights’ Blog has had an impact on their writing.

If you have two minutes to spare, we’d really appreciate you taking the time to share your thoughts. You can keep it short and simple, and it would mean a lot to the team!

Thinking ahead…

In the long term, we’ve also got some big plans in the works.

Website Improvements

We’re going to be fundraising and applying for grants to support a digital transformation project, making our online offerings even better and more useful for everyone who interacts with us online!

Writer Development – Accessible To All

We’re planning to expand our workshops, online masterclasses, and digital resources even more widely.  We believe that all writers should have access to the tools they need to grow their craft, regardless of background or financial circumstances. We have big ambitions to use technology to make create new development opportunities for our members working at all levels of their careers.

Increased Community Connection

We’re planning to connect even more with our community.

  • Later this year, we will be launching a survey to find out more about what you need to support your work, and targeted our activities around what you say.
  • In the course of the next year we’re planning to launch a ‘Members Spotlight’ feature where those in the LPB community can promote and share their work on our site.
  • We’re also hoping to build links with more individual members who are interested in volunteering for LPB/LPW – who have skills they want to develop or expertise they can share.
Laying Future Groundwork

To date, everything you have seen on this site – from opportunities and articles to the technical code of the website itself – has been created by volunteers, working for free.

We’re big believers that combination of volunteers and paid staff – as seen at other non-profits and social campaigns – can be a winning combination. But finding a way to pay the core team working incredibly hard day in and day out to keep the lights on will help us ensure this resource can continue for years to come.

As we move into our next phase of activity – which increasing artistic ambitions – we’re going to be exploring all of our options to build a financially secure organisation – while still looking out for playwrights on tight budgets, and ensuring can still access the information and resources they need.

How you can help us keep going!

NeuPaddy via Pixabay CC Licence (https://pixabay.com/photo-2503808/)

If you’d like to see London Playwrights’ Blog keep going for another five years, here’s what you can do to make that happen:

1. Share, share share!

The more writers that are in our network and supporting our work, the larger the support base for our work. Follow us on Twitter and Facebook, or email your favourite posts to your friends. Tell other writers about us. We have grown entirely by word of mouth, and it’s these little actions that make the difference.

2. Become a member

Joining as a member and becoming an active part of our community is the most important thing you can do to help us continue providing the blog and growing our work. You can set the rate you’d like to contribute, starting from the price of a cup of coffee (£3.63) per month.

As a thank you for being more involved in our community, members get access to special features and programmes. The possibilities of what we can offer are really only limited to how fast our base can grow. (We’ve worked to keep membership rates as accessible as possible, but if this is still too tight for your budget to afford, we offer a skillshare option, where you can contribute your time and skills to be part of the community.)

Learn more about joining: https://www.londonplaywrights.org/join/

3. Launch your own project

When we started LPB, no one gave us permission. We thought it was a good idea and figured it was worth a shot. We googled how to make a website and we did it. Bit by bit this grew into something much bigger than we could have imagined.

Want to create a scratch night? A script swap? A writers group? You have so much more power than you think to make this happen. And we’re are always here to help support you in publicising any work supporting writers. (That’s what the Weekly Roundup is here for!)

And if you have an idea that falls into our creative remit, it may even be possible to launch this in partnership or with support from LPB. If you think it might be a match for us, feel free to reach out to us at londonplaywrightsblog@gmail.com.

Whether you’re collaborating with us or not, the more good ideas and artistic energy that’s being created in this industry, the better for our whole community of playwrights. If you’ve got an idea you want to see get off the ground, there’s no better time to go for it!

Thanks again for making our first five years so great – and here’s to (hopefully!) many more.

Featured image: Andy Eick via Flickr Commons CC Licence

Has LPB impacted your writing? Share your story!

We’re absolutely thrilled to have launched our celebrations for the fifth anniversary of London Playwrights’ Workshop.

Since we’re based online, there are many of our readers we never get to meet, so it would mean a lot to hear from you – and also provide great momentum for the next stage of our journey.

How to share:

There’s a few ways you can share your thoughts!

  1. Tweet us at @LDNPlaywrights using the hashtag #5yearsLPB
  2. Email us at londonplaywrightsblog@gmail.com
  3. Respond here – pop a sentence or two in the form below and click submit!

What to send us:

You can share with us whatever you’d like, but if you’re looking for a few suggestions:

  1. Describe LPB in 3 words
  2. Write a sentence or two how LPB has helped your writing
  3. Share a photo – we love images! This could be of you / your writing space / a production of your work  – whatever feels right to you.*

We’re going to be collecting these together to share in a blog post as part of our celebration festivities – but if you’d rather your post stay private, only for the team, just note this and we’ll be happy to respect this.

We look forward to hearing from you!

Deadline: 5 March 2018

*We don’t yet have the capacity to accept photo uploads on the website, so best to send these via Twitter or email.

365 Women a Year Playwriting Project

This international playwriting project involves over 200 playwrights who have signed on to write one or more one-acts about extraordinary women in both past and present history. The project’s ambitious yet focused goal is to write women back into the social consciousness as well as empower and promote female playwrights around the country.

They are now in their third year of writing pieces about 365 historical women a year.

You will find all the information below on how to be a part of our project, along with frequently asked questions, and available historical women.

How to apply: Choose a woman or women to write about. They are looking for 365 NEW women that the project has not yet covered.  They do not accept repeats from previous years yet. You can make sure you don’t claim a repeat by searching through their historical women  alphabetically . If you are not sure who to write about, see their site for a list of available women.

Once you have chosen some options, you will fill out the  CLAIM FORM. You will be asked to choose at least 3 options, in case your lady has already been claimed.

To find the full details about how to submit a proposal for the woman you would like to write about and their formatting guidelines, please see their website. (And do review these guidelines carefully before applying!)

Deadline: 31 December 2018

Source: Playwrights’ Studio Scotland

Sky Blue seeking short plays for British Theatre Challenge 2018 (£16 fee)

Sky Blue choose five plays to be produced in a London venue. One of the winning plays will also be chosen to be made into a short film. This year’s performance will take place in October at the Lost Theatre.

What you get: 

  • Given a full performance at the Lost Theatre, London
  • Developed by professional directors
  • Performed by professional actors
  • Given written assessments by theatre professionals
  • Considered for publication by two or more publishers
  • Filmed in performance by Mini Mammoth Films
  • A public audience will vote for their favourite
  • Mini Mammoth film award, 1 play turned into a short film
  • Up to 30 plays will be shortlisted

What you pay: There is a non-refundable entry fee of £16.

Rules/What to submit/How to apply:

  1. Play submissions that do not comply with all competition rules will be read in their entirety but may be discounted from the competition without notification to the writer or refund of entry fee.
  2. The competition is open to all nationalities, but plays must be written in English and unpublished for the duration of the competition.
  3. Plays must be written for the stage for more than one actor with a running time no more than 30 minutes.
  4. By entering the competition the writer affirms that their entry is original and they have sole rights to all matters contained within the play.
  5. The author’s name and contact details must be removed from all pages of the script. All pages to be numbered.
  6. The first page of each script should include a completed play synopsis of no more than 50 words, a list of characters, a description of setting.
  7. Entries must be submitted with full payment of £16 per play. Entrants may submit any number of plays and each play must be accompanied by the appropriate entry fee.
  8. The organisers will not accept responsibility for the loss of scripts in transit.
  9. The judge’s decision is final and no correspondence concerning the results will be entered into.
  10. Play submissions that do not comply with all competition rules will be read in their entirety but may be discounted from the competition without notification to the writer or refund of entry fee.

The entry form can be found on their website.

Deadline: 30 March 2018

Source: Playwrights’ Studio Scotland

 

Playwriting Workshop with John Burgess in Poitiers, France

Playwriting Workshop with John Burgess
4-8 May 2018
Poitiers, France

John Burgess will be leading a 3 day workshop in a beautiful priory set in lovely gardens close to Poitiers, France from 4-8 May 2018.

The three days will cover basic building blocks: words of one syllable, rhythm, exits and entrances, building a page, surprise, stichomythia, images, actions, silence. There will be time for reading and homework.

John Burgess is a freelance director and lives in London. He worked for fourteen years at the National Theatre where he directed works from the classical, romantic and modern repertoires as well as many new plays. He helped found the NT Studio in 1984 and was the National Theatre’s Head of New Writing 1989-94. He has directed in the UK, Switzerland, Scandinavia and North America and is the author of The Faber Pocket Guide to Greek and Roman Drama.

What you get:Maximum 7 participants, all rooms are single occupancy.

All food, drinks and airport transfers are included. You can choose to stay on after Mr. Burgess has left (at extra cost) for extra days of writing, exploring or resting.

How to apply: Please email jftmorley@hotmail.com  for more details.

Source: Direct contact

 

Bradford Playhouse seeking short plays on LGBT themes

June sees Bradford Playhouse‘s LGBT month. They are hoping to showcase some of the Best LGBT theatre in the country.

Part of the month will include their New Writing Festival.

What to submit: They are currently open to submissions of short plays between 15 minutes and half an hour in length. The theme must be based around LGBT issues.

How to apply: Please submit scripts to carl@studioat.co.uk.

All scripts submitted will receive feedback.

Deadline: 15 February 2018

Source: BBC Writersroom

 

28 Plays Later (£20.18 entry, finishers share profits)

28 Plays Later is back for its fourth year, being run by Theatre Deli in association with The Space.

Over the past three years (well, three months to be precise), 485 writers started the process, with 317 completing it. 10,676 plays were written in those months, and while some may never be read again, others have already been performed all around the world.

How it works: Well, during the month of February 2018, you will have to write one short play every day.
Plays can be good, bad, terrible, embarrassingly dreadful – the only thing that’s important is that you write them on that day.

What you pay: You commit £20.18 to the project and the money will be split between all the survivors who make it 28 plays later (minus 32% operational fee, and PayPal transaction fees).

How to sign up: To register, complete the form on their website or email Sebastian at playslater28@gmail.com. Sebastian will then send you account details to contribute £20.18 by 28th January.

(PLEASE DO NOT SEND £20.18 BEFORE YOU’VE RECEIVED THE PAYMENT INSTRUCTIONS.)

Deadline: 28 January 2018

Source: Theatre Delicatessen Newsletter

Series Mania Writers’ Campus in Lille France (free accommodation)

Series Mania Writers’ Campus is a week-long writing workshop offering intensive and high quality training for 20 emerging TV drama writers in Europe. The event will take place from Friday, April 27th to Friday, May 4th.

During their stay in Lille, participants will be mentored by two professional tutors: Martie Cook, who has over 25 years of experience as a television writer and producer, and Sarah Treem who is the showrunner and producer of ‘The Affair‘ (full bios). Participants will have the privilege of meeting experienced tutors, scriptwriters and leading audiovisual professionals.

The participants are selected through a dedicated call for TV drama projects, upon presentation of a project in development. Eligible candidates are writers who can prove at least one professional experience on a broadcast TV series.

1st part: from April 27th to May 1st, classes and workshops at La Plaine Images

2nd part: May 2nd to 4th, conferences, workshops, etc. at Lille Grand Palais as well as a stage presentation in one of the auditoriums during the industry event.

Some participants will be selected among the alumni of the partner schools (details on their website).

Fee: Training is free for all selected writers. Series Mania will cover the cost of accommodation, tuition and accreditation. Only meal expenses and travel are the responsibility of the participants.

How to apply: FAQ and application form can be found on the website.

Deadline: 5 February 2018

Source: BBC Writersroom

In Good Company seeking ideas to scratch at Derby Theatre (paid £250)

In Good Company’s scratch nights continue, with its next event taking place on 3 March 2018.

Taking place in Derby Theatre’s Studio, this is an opportunity for you to try out new ideas in front of an audience and get a bit of feedback to help you develop your work in the future and maybe see some fireworks.

Eligibility: This is an open call out for artists and priority will be given to those from the East Midlands who have something to scratch, however they will consider applications from further afield.

What you get / payment: 

Payment: £250 per show (EM artists) £300 (visiting artist).  This is to cover your expenses and you can keep the change if you have any.

Rehearsal Space: There is rehearsal space available at Derby Theatre on the 3rd to be shared equally between the artists.

Tech: You will be allocated a technical rehearsal slot of 1hr in the performance space on the day of the scratch. On the night you will have a shared turn around time 10 minutes either side of your performance

How to apply: Download the application form here and the monitoring form here.

Please return both your application and the monitoring form to Daniel on d.nicholas@derby.ac.uk.

Deadline: 26 January 2018

Source: Arts Jobs

Theatre503 Playwriting Award 2018

The Theatre503 Playwriting Award will be open for submissions on February 1st.

The Theatre503 Playwriting award is made possible by the long term support of The Richard Carne Trust. Nick Hern Books are returning as Publishing Partners and Award Ceremony Sponsors for the third time.

How to apply: Submission details have not yet been posted, but have been announced to follow.

Deadline: 31 March 2018

Source: Theatre503 Writers Newsletter