If you’re interested in writing for Radio Comedy, the BBC has just released a free e-book with interactive features that provides a guide to both the practical and interactive aspects of Writing Radio Comedy. (And just in time to prep for their next submissions window, which will focus on comedy!)
The next BBC Writersroom submission window is coming soon, and geared at COMEDY. Scriptroom 6 will open at 10am on Monday 28th April and close at midnight on Monday 12th May. This year they are accepting submissions by genre. For Scriptroom 6, they will only be accepting Comedy (Radio/TV/Film) scripts.
INSIDE WRITING: A masterclass on writing for stage and screen by BBC Writersroom
Ever wondered how to send your script to the BBC and what happens when you do? How do they assess your work? What grabs them and what puts them off? If you’re after some tips, this is a session not to miss.
BBC Writersroom is always on the lookout for fresh, new, talented writers of any age and experience with an original voice and great stories to tell. Join Henry R Swindell, Development Producer for BBC Writersroom North (which focuses on championing writers from across the north of England) who will provide you with some invaluable tips and answer any burning questions you may have about writing for both stage and screen.
This 2 hour seminar utilizes loads of film and TV clips to clearly demonstrate the building blocks of great story telling. It’s a very broad talk that is suitable for both beginners and experienced writers designed to get people excited and invigorated about writing as well as covering most of the basics.
The BBC Writersroom opened yesterday for submissions of TV Drama, and will accept scripts until 31 March 2014. Make sure you get your script in if you’d like them to look at it, as this is the only submission window dedicated to TV Drama in 2014! (Later submission windows will focus on Comedy, Theatre/Radio, etc.)
For more details and how to apply read our post here.
The BBC will be running free masterclasses in comedy writing through the Salford Comedy Festival on 18 March 2014. [Ed: While this event isn’t located in London, it’s free training from the BBC and we thought it was worth including since some London writers may wish to make the trip.]
The BBC’s Salford Comedy Festival takes place from Monday 17th to Wednesday 19th March 2014. The three-day event supported by BBC Comedy Commissioning, in collaboration with BBC North, will be held in venues across the MediaCityUK site. Across the three days there are several events open to comedy fans, including the BBC Sitcom Showcase featuring brand new potential TV sitcoms across the three consecutive evenings. On Tuesday evening, Sheffield’s tallest comedian Tom Wrigglesworth will be recording an episode of his BBC Radio 4 series; Tom Wrigglesworth’s Hang Ups.
Writersroom in partnership with the University of Salford will be running comedy masterclasses on Tues 18th March 2014 and there will also be a range of other events on offer.
For 2014, the BBC Writersroom has transitioned to a new submissions system (as noted in a previous post), and the first submission window is coming up.
The BBC Writersroom will be open to submissions of TV & Film Drama scripts from 17 March 2014 at 9am until 31 March 2014 at midnight. They will only be accepting scripts that relate to this subject area during this time – there will be opportunities for other scripts (comedy, radio drama, etc) later in the year.
How to apply: Applications can be made through their e-submissions system. (Note: they will not be open to submissions until 17 March 2014, and you will not be able to apply before this date.)
The BBC Writersroom website has great resources, including writing tips, sample scripts, what they’re looking for, how to format a script, and more – so it’s worth making time to look through their website in detail before applying.
The Script Room window for submitting scripts will be open from November 18th 2013 until 5pm on December 16th 2013.
The Script Room is a place where you can send your script to be assessed by a team of experienced readers. This is not a free script-reading service, but a means by which the BBC seeks out the best new writing talent, offering writers without a track record, representation, or contacts the opportunity to have their work considered by the BBC. Shortlisted writers will go forward to access a range of development opportunities with BBC writersroom.
What to submit: The BBC has very detailed guidelines about what they do and do not submit, so be sure to read their Terms and Conditions to make sure your script qualifies before sending it in. Your script must be a minimum of 30 minutes in length, and must be written for film, television, stage, or radio. (While the BBC does not produce stageplays, the Script Room will accept stageplays as a ‘calling card of a writer’s talent, ability, and voice.’
The BBC Writersroom has posted a new column from Sally Stott about one of the big career questions for young and emerging writers: How do I get an agent?
There won’t be many surprises here for writers who have researched this topic before, although the piece is a good introduction and helpfully provides links to submission guidelines for Berlin Associates, David Higham Associates, and MBA.
The biggest takeaway is DON’T wait for an agent to get serious about your work. Enter competitions, produce your own plays – find any means you can to build your experience and strengthen your writing. This experience is what will ultimately win you an agent, but it seems the best way to demonstrate you are ready for representation is to show what you can accomplish without it.
To celebrate the unique relationship between the theatre and broadcast industries BBC writersroom is once again running Writersroom 10 – which invests in writers and new theatre writing. 10 writers will receive a seed-commission of £1,000.
Note: You must be nominated by a theatre in order to apply.
The BBC is are looking for 10 emerging writers who already have an early-stage relationship with a theatre.
The writer and theatre can be from anywhere across the UK.
The writer must not yet have had a full professional production of their work in the theatre – though they may have had readings, workshops, amateur/fringe productions.
Theatres must have a proven commitment to new writing, whether that is dedicated or as part of a broader repertoire – and they must have previously mounted at least one full professional theatre production.
The seed bursary does not tie the theatre into making a full commission – but it is hoped this will be the beginning of an on-going commitment to that writer.
To apply the theatre must nominate a writer. Each theatre may submit up to two nominations for the writersroom 10.
How to apply: Submissions must come from the nominating theatre and can be emailed to email@example.com. Each submission must include:
The writer’s full original script as a sample of their voice
The writer’s one-page outline of an idea/play they wish to write
The writer’s biography/writing CV
A letter of support from the nominating theatre
Applications will be judged by Kate Rowland, Creative Director, New Writing and writers Tim Price (The Radicalisation of Bradley Manning) and Lucy Kirkwood (Chimerica).
What you get: The programme will last for one year and the 10 will convene as a group. Each writer will also have a BBC mentor to broaden their scriptwriting horizons and bring a fresh perspective to their work. They are looking for the widest possible range of talent to apply – bold, different, unusual, diverse, distinct, talented voices with a passion and an urge to their work.