Write a play in January! 5 Reasons why you should take part in #WrAP2019

Want to find out more about why you should take part in #WrAP2019? Here, our Head of Writer Development and #WrAP2019 producer Kimberley Andrews,  gives you the lowdown and her top 5 reasons for why it’s worth giving it a go!

1.  It’s the perfect New Year’s Resolution

With Christmas looming you’re probably starting to think about your New Year’s Resolutions. Mine usually consist of a diverse selection of overly ambitious aims such as taking up a wild and daring new sport (NB, I don’t do any sports) or eating a fiercely unbearable cocktail of superfoods on a daily basis for the whole year. Not to mention my ‘Writerly Resolutions’ which include bold and completely unattainable commitments such as ‘I will set my alarm for 4am every day to make more time for writing’, or ‘ I will make it big in Hollywood this year’.

Needless to say, most of these resolutions have been ditched before the end of January and whilst I can happily forget the idea of taking up a sport, falling off the wagon with my writing aims leaves me feeling demoralised and I find this really kills my motivation.

#WrAP2019 might sound like another  outlandish January plan but it differs in the fact that you’ll see results in relatively short space of time. Seeing how much you can achieve in just one month will give you a massive boost for the year ahead! It’s also completely possible to achieve your goal – and we know this because people actually did write entire first drafts when we ran #WrAP last year.

2. You can’t fail

Unlike a resolution that requires you to abstain from something you really love for a whole year or FAIL(!) completely, you can’t actually fail WrAP. It’s true that some of those who took part last year didn’t manage to finish their plays in a month but you know what, they still had more than they started with at the beginning of January. That sounds like success to me. Even if you only get a few pages down, you’ll have sown the seeds of an idea you’ll be able to develop as the year goes on. Plus, you’ll have the #WrAP2019 emails in your inbox (and live on our members site) to refer back to as you go along.

3. It’s even better than last year

Well, last year’s WrAP was phenomenal. And that’s not us blowing our own trumpets – that’s based on the amazing work that the 155 writers who took part managed in the space of just one month.  Some people completed a whole first draft in January, others wrote a few scenes, others fleshed out an idea which formed the basis of the project they worked on for the rest of the year. It was amazing to have so many writers working alongside each other, albeit digitally, to achieve a common goal.

#WrAp2019 will work in pretty much the same way as it did last year (if it ain’t broke don’t fix it!) with participants receiving prompts straight to their inbox to guide them through the process of writing a play –  but this year, we’ve got even more exciting stuff coming up…

We’re going to be throwing in some bonus content which looks at the building blocks of playwriting so rather than just focusing on the page count, you’ll have even more of a chance to develop your craft and to become a better writer.

We’ve even got a new content producer on board called George, who has experience in delivering digital content and supporting writers (and is also an emerging playwright) who will be working with me to make sure #WrAP2019 is even better than last year!

In addition to this, we’re also going to be giving you the chance to share your work at the next members meet-up so you can get feedback from other LPW members, and I’m also going to turn up armed with some tips for redrafting (which will be useful if you’re thinking of entering any of the big competitions coming up in 2019). You can read more about that here.

4. It’ll make you a better writer

This might sound like a bold claim and admittedly, there is no scientific evidence to back this up nor any guarantee that completing #WrAP2019 will mean your play gets snapped up by a producer. But based on the old adage ‘practice makes perfect’ I don’t see how committing to your writing in January could not make you a better writer in some (even small) way.

With writing prompts, mini workshops, and exercises to banish writers’ block, you should feel motivated to write as much as you can in January and whilst you’re doing that, you’re bound to discover some stuff about playwriting and you voice that will no doubt improve your work. There’s also something magical about working to a tight deadline which unlocks something in your writing – you might not come up with your most polished piece of work but you’re more likely to write something you feel connected to, once you’ve let go of the idea of perfection in favour of getting it finished.

5. It’s not going to break the bank

We know January is that notorious month where we desperately await payday, subsisting on slightly stale mince pies and the Bounty Celebrations that no one ever bothers eating over Christmas. But, if you’re already a member of LPW , you can access #WrAP2019 for absolutely no extra cost. if you’re not a member yet, it’s only going to cost you the price of a coffee to join. And weren’t you giving up coffee for 2019 anyway…?

We should also mention that by becoming a member, you’ll also be helping us to continue the work we do to support emerging playwrights, so you’ll also be doing a good deed! Find out more about joining here. 

You can also find out more about signing up for #WrAP2019 here. And feel free to ask questions by commenting on this post, tweeting @LDNPlaywrights or emailing members@londonplaywrights.org 

Team #WrAP2019

Kimberley Andrews 

Kimberley is a co-founder of LPB and is Head of Writer Development. She’s worked with many writers through the workshops she programmes and delivers, and also works as a playwriting tutor & script consultant. A playwright herself, she’s passionate about helping others to be the best writers they can be. 

George Bailey

George is the LPB intern and also works at Chichester Festival Theatre in digital projects. He’s an emerging playwright and has worked with many writers through mentoring schemes he has managed with theatres. He is keen to help everyone and anyone in their writing; whether it’s their first draft, first play or first time picking up a pen! 

Featured image by Marco Verch via Flickr CC 

Opportunities Weekly Round-up: 14 December 2018

Want to support LPB? Become a member!

Our weekly Friday round-up of opportunities listed on the blog that haven’t yet reached their closing date (listed in order of closing date).  Opportunities are grouped into four sections: 1) Pick of the Week & featured posts; 2) Opportunities with Deadlines; 3) Workshops and Events; 4) Ongoing opportunities (No deadline).

Want to be sure you never miss an opportunity?  Sign up for our email list to get the weekly roundup direct to your inbox! 

Featured posts:

#WrAP is back for 2019! Write a play this January!

LPW: FREE #WrAP2019 feedback session & member meetup!

Four tips on how to write a historical play that still feels contemporary

Festive Gift Guide 2018 – The Best Gifts For Writers

LPW Online Book Club: Girls by Theresa Ikoko


LPB Members: Online Course – Writing in Dialect: How to Listen, What to Write

Our latest opportunities Pick of the Week: BBC Writersroom Script Submission window for drama – now open

Pursued by a Bear: “I never finish anything, how do I keep my focus?”

Opportunities with deadlines: 

The Arcola Theatre accepting submissions for The Public Address – Deadline: currently accepting expressions of interest

Wales Writer in Residence (National Theatre Wales BBC Cymru Wales) – Deadline: email now to express interest

32 Opportunities with December deadlines – Deadlines: various throughout December 2018

Beacon Productions: Talented playwrights wanted for student production – Deadline: 14 December 2018

New Writer Commission, Big Brum Theatre in Education Company Ltd (paid) – Deadline :14 December 2018

Shorts @ The Canal – Love Shots call out – Deadline: 14 December 2018

International Young Theatre Playwriting Contest open for entries (15-25 year olds) – Deadline: 15 December 2018

Breakwater Theatre Company new playwriting contest open for submissions – Deadline: 15 December 2018

Young Writers’ Group at the Bush Theatre (14-17 year olds) – Deadline: 17 December 2018

365 Women a Year Playwriting Project – Deadline: 31 December 2018

Dwell Time – Penistone Train Line Newspaper: seeking submissions– Deadline: 31 December 2018

Quantum Frolic Theatre Company seeking shorts for playwriting competition (£10 entry fee/ £250 prize) – Deadline: 31 December 2018

Ashland New Plays Festival: International Playwriting Competition ($20 entry, $1500 prize) – Deadline :31 December or when they reach 400 submissions, whichever is sooner

Broken Silence Theatre accepting applications for Young Writer in Residence 2019 (18-30) – Deadline: 1 January 2019 at 8pm

BBC Writersroom announces submission window for Script Room Drama 2019 – Deadline: 7 January 2018

Persistent and Nasty seeking submissions  on ‘hope for the future’ – Deadline: 7 January 2018 at 5pm

Free Spirit Theatre seeking original play for production in Spring 2019 – Deadline: 8 January 2019

UGC Writers’ Campus – Series Mania: accepting applications – Deadline: 9 January 2019

ReWrite script development event with In Motion Theatre Company (Glasgow) – Deadline: 11 January 2019

King’s Theatre in Annapolis Royal seeking 10 minute plays for festival ($15 entry fee)- Deadline: 14 January 2019

Female Birmingham Writers/Artists, Near Neighbours & Birmingham Museum & Art Gallery – Deadline: 18 January 2019

Optik Theatre: The Script Room – call out for scripts – Deadline: 31 January 2019

IASH/Traverse Creative Fellowship open for applications- Deadline: 31 January 2019 at 5pm

Drip Action Theatre Company: Arundel Festival Theatre Trail open for submissions – Deadline: 31 January 2018

Leeds Playhouse script window will be open on 1 January 2019 – Deadline: 31 January 2019

The Bush Theatre script submission window now open– Deadline: 1 February 2019

Toi Toi, Teatru Manoel (Malta) seeking one act plays on the theme of ‘Breaking the Rules ‘ – Deadline: 1 February 2019

Northern Writers’ Awards 2019 open for entries – Deadline: 7 February 2019

Papatango New Writing Prize 2019 open for entries – Deadline: 17 February 2019

Green Curtain Theatre seeking one act plays on the theme of ‘breaking away‘ – Deadline: 28 February 2019

Capital Stage accepting submissions for Playwrights’ Revolution Festival – Deadline: 28 February 2019

University Women In The Arts Announces Partnerships With Leading Arts Organisations On Project To Tackle Abuse In The Arts– Deadline: 15 March 2019

Langham Court Theatre announces Risk Theatre Modern Tragedy Competition ($45 entry) – Deadline: 29 March 2019

Carlo Annoni Award 2019 open for entries – Deadline: 30 April 2019

Green Stories Stage Play Writing Competition open for entries – Deadline: 30 June 2019

Events and workshops:

The Director’s Cut hosting The Writer’s Club –  Next term starts January 2019

Writing your own role: workshop with Lydia Parker at the Actors’ Centre – Dates: find out more on the website

National Theatre – Playwriting Then and Now: 30 Years of Nick Hern Books – Date: 8 December 2018

The Old Vic – Workshops for Artists – Dates: various throughout January 2019

Drama Studio London: Writing For The Theatre – Playwriting Course 2019 – Dates: Starts 15 January 2018

Women’s Writing Workshop with Actor Awareness (University Women in the Arts) – Date: 22 January 2018

Writing Scripted Comedy with Chris Neilan – a one day workshop (Manchester) – Date: 28 January 2019

Clean Break: An Introduction to writing for theatre in criminal justice settings – Date: 8 February 2019

Writing West Midlands: Short course in playwriting – Dates: Starts 26 February 2019

LPW: FREE #WrAP2019 feedback session & member meetup!Date: 2 March 2019

Writing for Television: Residential workshop with Roy Mitchell – Dates: 20-24 May 2018

Online workshops and resources: 

Stagedoor App Podcast (Bridget Minamore and Chris Campbell of the Royal Court’s Literary Office)

Bloomsbury Publishing: How to get your play published (view live stream of talk)

WGGB launches FREE Musical Theatre Kit

An Introduction to Screenwriting: free online course with FutureLearn & Uni. of East Anglia

LPB Summer Sessions: Overcoming writers’ block (online workshop)

LPB Summer Sessions: How to write a monologue (online workshop)

LPB Summer Sessions: Promoting yourself as a writer (online workshops)

LPB: The Redrafting Toolkit

LPB Members: Online Course – Writing in Dialect: How to Listen, What to Write –  Available now

Ongoing submissions:

Papatango New Writing Prize 2019 open for entries

Opening in 2009, the Papatango New Writing Prize was the first – and remains the only – annual playwriting award in the UK to guarantee an emerging playwright a full production on the professional stage. It provides a royalty of 10% of the gross box office and publication by Nick Hern Books, as well as a full commission to support a follow-up play.

As well as giving one brilliant writer an unrivalled opportunity, the Prize is unique in giving feedback to all entries. No other company makes such an investment in emerging playwrights.

The 2019 Prize will be open for entries from 6 December 2018 – 9pm, 17 February 2019. It is open to all residents of the UK or Ireland, free to enter, and assessed anonymously. Remember: all you need is a story.

How to apply: find out more here.

Deadline: 17 February 2019 at 9pm

Source: @Playwriting_UK

The Bush Theatre script submission window now open

The Bush Theatre is committed to discovering the best new plays from playwrights who may be unknown to them and therefore seek unsolicited submissions from playwrights in dedicated script windows.

They are proud to be a champion of playwrights with a keen interest in those voices not often heard and reflecting the contemporary culture of our city, the UK and beyond.

If you are a playwright, are not currently represented by an agent, and have a play to share with them, The Bush would love to hear from you.

How to apply: find out more about the submission guidelines and how to apply here.

Deadline: 1 February 2019

Source: @Playwriting_UK

IASH/Traverse Creative Fellowship open for applications

The 2019 fellowship is now open for applications. Interviews will be held in the second week of February 2019.

About the Fellowship

IASH and the Traverse Theatre will commission a play on or inspired by any aspect of the Institute’s current interests. The stipend will be £10,000 and the recipient will have a private office and full Fellowship at IASH, and contribute to the Institute’s events, including giving at least one work-in-progress seminar during the tenure of the Fellowship.  During the period of the fellowship the playwright will receive dramaturgical support from the Traverse’s Literary Department.

The recipient must be Edinburgh-based for the duration of the residency, as their regular presence at IASH is expected and they will be encouraged to play a part in the artistic life of the theatre.

The tenure of the Fellowship will be between 6 and 10 months, by agreement, with the intention that the playwright will submit a complete play to the Traverse at the end of 2019.

The ideal candidate will be a writer who wants to engage actively with the Traverse and is eager to make the most of the unique environment that IASH provides to further their thinking and develop their work. You can find out more about IASH via the About page.

How to apply: visit the website for more information

Deadline: 31 Janauary 2019 at 5pm

Source: @Playwriting_UK

Beacon Productions: Talented playwrights wanted for student production

Beacon Productions – set up by current Loughborough student Corinne Bills and alumnus Ben Welham – are looking for talented playwrights who are keen to see their plays debuted at the 2019 Edinburgh Fringe.

The company, which performed at the event earlier this year, focuses on new writing and experimental content, and are particularly keen to hear from those who feel they can work comfortably in a group environment as well as independently.

For those who are also interested in pursuing a directorial role, no previous experience is necessary, although good leadership and time management skills will be needed to direct a group of actors.

A co-director will also be provided to help those new to the company or those who wish to seek help to develop their ideas further and transition their work from the page to the stage.

How to apply: please email scripts to beaconproductioncompany@gmail.comalongside a proposal sheet which can be downloaded here: Play proposal sheet.docx

Deadline: 14 December 2018 at 12pm

Source: @Playwriting_UK

Opportunities – Pick of the Week: BBC Writersroom Script Submission window for drama – now open

Each week we look through our pile of writing opportunities to pick out one we think is particularly worth your time. It could be an innovative brief, great prize money, a high-profile company, or just plain fun.

This week’s pick: BBC Writersroom Script Submission window for drama – now open

Description: BBC Writersroom’s regular window for unsolicited scripts is open between 5pm on Monday 10 December 2018 and 5pm on Monday 7January 2019 for Drama scripts (TV, film, radio, stage or online).

What’s so great about it? The Writersroom submission windows are important dates in the diary of a writer, so we figured it was worth flagging this one up before it closes in January.

As a result of the submission window, a group of writers (usually between 10 and 15) will be selected to join the BBC Drama Room writer development group for 2019,

In this submission window, they are looking for drama scripts (the comedy window will open later in 2019), so it’s worth giving this a go if you’ve got a full length script to send in – do bear in mind that they receive a lot of submissions so make sure you’re sending in your best work (and check out the resources on the Writersroom website if you want some guidance!). You’ve got until 7 January to submit!

Read the full details here

Please note, we’ve posted this for your convenience and we’re not affiliated with the organisers of the opportunity.

Photo courtesy of BBC Writersroom

Broken Silence Theatre accepting applications for Young Writer in Residence 2019 (18-30)

One regional writer from the South East will be chosen to receive tailored career support, including a minimum of 2 x mentoring/feedback sessions, 1 x script workshop and 1 x rehearsed reading, culminating in the development of a new full-length play over a 12-month period.

Broken Silence’s 2018 Young Writer in Residence, Ella Dorman-Gajic, will become the company’s first Writer in Residence.

Submission guidelines: 

  • Open to writers aged 18-30
  • Writers must currently live, or originally come from, one of the following counties: Berkshire, Bedfordshire, Buckinghamshire, Cambridgeshire, Essex, Hampshire, Hertfordshire, Kent, Norfolk, Oxfordshire, Suffolk, Surrey or Sussex
  • Script Length: 8-12 pages
  • Scripts should be in the form of a complete scene or short play
  • Scripts should NOT have been previously staged/produced/published
  • Only one script can be submitted per writer

How to apply: please submit an 8-12 page script/extract and 200 words on why this opportunity would help your writing career. to brokensilencetheatre@gmail.com

Deadline: 1 January 2019 at 8pm

Source: Playwriting UK Facebook Group

ReWrite script development event with In Motion Theatre Company (Glasgow)

ReWrite is a script development event for playwrights from Glasgow-based In Motion Theatre Company. They will select four  short plays or script extracts (up to 15 pages in length) and give you space and guidance to develop your script, to grow your ideas and push your playwriting.

How it works: once selected, writers will be invited in for a chat. They will talk about your script, ask questions and discuss where you want to take the script next. Writers will then be given a fortnight to ReWrite. Each selected playwright will receive £50.00 towards their expenses.

On the day of the event, each writer will be joined by professional actors to stage a reading of their short play in a 1.5 hour rehearsal slot, directed by Beth Morton.

The day will culminate in staged readings of four plays to a public audience. They will help you to gather audience feedback and ready you for the next stage of your work’s development.

Key dates: the next ReWrite will take place across the following dates:

  • Submissions deadline: 5pm, Friday 11th January 2019
  • 1-1 Meetings: Week of 28th January – 1st February
  • Development Day + Event: Thursday 21st February

How to apply: to apply for ReWrite email your script extracts to info@inmotiontc.co.uk with the subject ‘ReWrite February’.

Please complete an Equal Opportunities Monitoring Form alongside your application. or visit the In Motion Theatre Company website for more info.

Deadline: 11 January 2019 at 5pm

Source: BBC Writersroom

Northern Writers’ Awards 2019 open for entries

Writers based in the North of England are invited to submit their work-in-progress to the Northern Writers’ Awards 2019.

The Northern Writers’ Awards are for work-in-progress and exist to recognise talent and support new work towards publication or broadcast. The awards are the largest of their kind in the UK and have a reputation for identifying some of the best unpublished writing in the country. There are awards for writers of poetry, fiction, creative non-fiction and television at different stages of their careers, including young people. Awards can include publication; mentoring; developmental support; and cash awards to buy time to write.

There are categories across novel writing, short story, poetry, non-fiction and scriptwriting.

For scriptwriters the categories include the Channel 4 Writing for Television Awards, with a mentoring placement on Hollyoaks, produced by Lime Pictures and the Television Drama Award with a mentoring placement at Bonafide Films.

How to apply: For full details and to enter visit the Northern Writers’ Awards website

Deadline; 7 February 2019 

Source: BBC Writersroom