Wednesday 27 August 2014, 12:01
Editor's note: Boy Meets Girl is the UK's first transgender sitcom and has been commissioned as a full series on BBC Two among the channel's raft of new commissions. Created and written by Elliott Kerrigan and Simon Carlyle, the Manchester-based comedy was discovered through the Trans Comedy Award – a BBC Writersroom talent search in partnership with Trans Comedy, which offered aspiring writers up to £5,000 for the best script that promoted a positive portrayal of transgender characters.
First things first, thank you for taking the time to read this. Second, I’ll try not to keep repeating the phrase “and then we did this...” Thirdly, how did this happen? One moment I’m out of work, not doing much with my life, avoiding parties in case someone says, “So what do you do?” And then here I am, sitting at a laptop, writing a blog for the BBC Writersroom. And, just for the record, if I was at a party now and someone said, “So what do you do?” I’m not sure I could say “Writer.” Chances are they wouldn’t believe me, but to think I’m working on a TV show for BBC2… well this is crazy to me. Anyway, enough of my rambling. Here’s a little bit of my journey so far...
Wednesday 20 August 2014, 15:24
Editor's note: Luke Barnes is the writer of two plays at this year's Edinburgh Fringe: Beats North (a double-bill with Ishy Din) and Bottleneck, returning to the festival following an acclaimed premiere in 2012. He explains why the Fringe has meant so much to his career and why it is a uniquely exciting destination for new writing.
I’m writing this as I’m packing my bag to return to Edinburgh for the first time since 2012. Back then I was really lucky and won sponsorship from IdeasTap and Old Vic New Voices to take Chapel Street up to the Fringe and, even more luckily, Bottleneck was produced by HighTide. This all happened in a bit of whirlwind, in the space of two weeks in July 2012. At first we were told we hadn't won sponsorship from IdeasTap and then weeks later I got a phone call saying we’d got it and, about a week later, HighTide got in touch to say they had a last minute slot and did I have anything. At this point my only credit was a few weeks in a pub theatre so I was over the moon to be produced twice. But that is an anomaly, it doesn’t normally happen. Normally you approach a venue months in advance with an idea and go through that way. It’s a nightmare but, if...
Thursday 14 August 2014, 14:02
Editor's Note: The Our World War Interactive Episode accompanies the BBC Three series. The interactive episode is set during the attack on High Wood – part of the Battle of the Somme in 1916. The writer of the interactive episode, Marco Crivellari, explains the process of writing an episode in which the viewer is put in the position of a young corporal and has to make critical decisions to keep his men alive.
Our World War Interactive Episode
2 April 2014
Would you mind doing some of my work for me? I’ve been asked to write the online accompaniment to a series on BBC Three about the First World War, called Our World War. We’ve decided to make a full-on drama about a section of soldiers fighting for control of High Wood, on the Somme. The drama will be based on detailed research on the real events in High Wood, and it will be told through a fictional group of characters facing some of the very same kinds of agonising, life-or-death decisions the real soldiers had to face back in 1916.
Here’s the thing – at all the major turning points of the story, at each tactical, ethical and emotional decision the young commander of the section faces – the points at...
Monday 11 August 2014, 10:39
BBC Writersroom and The Space are delighted to announce that National Theatre Wales (NTW) is the first winner of a new, biennial £20, 000 digital theatre award – The Space Prize – a collaboration between organisations encouraging theatres across the United Kingdom to create a unique theatrical experience that will be shown on The Space website. The announcement was delivered last night, Sunday 10 August 2014, by BBC New Writing Creative Director Kate Rowland at ‘Think Big’ held in Kings Hall, Edinburgh.
Against the backdrop of the event exploring big new theatre ideas with leading...
Thursday 7 August 2014, 14:37
Editor’s Note: Inspired by the BAFTA-winning series Our War, which tracked the first-hand experiences of British troops on the front line in Afghanistan, BBC Three’s Our World War immerses viewers in the real stories of British troops serving on the front line during World War One. Our World War is written by Joe Barton and starts on BBC three on Thursday 7th Aug at 9pm. The series has been made in association with BBC Learning.
Tuesday 5 August 2014, 16:49
Editor's note: In the Club is a drama about pregnancy, imminent birth, love and the changing nature of relationships that a new baby brings to a modern family. It follows lives of six pregnant women and their partners who meet at a local parentcraft class. It starts on Tues 5th Aug on BBC One at 9pm.In The Club
In The Club has been in my brain for a long time just waiting for the right time to give birth. I had the idea round about the same time I had the idea for Fat Friends but there was more of an appetite for Fat Friends at the time and so In The Club was put on the back burner.
Friday 1 August 2014, 12:54
Editor's note: Radio 4's 'Home Front' begins on Monday 4th August 2014, marking the 100th anniversary of the outbreak of the First World War. Each episode is set exactly 100 years before the date of the broadcast and the programme will expand and develop over the four years of the war to explore its impact on the lives of people living on the home front.
Home Front: Charting life on the home front during the First World War.
When I was preparing to interview for the job of Editor of Home Front, I knew there would be the question: ‘what is your vision for the series?’
I already knew...
Tuesday 29 July 2014, 13:53
“All scriptwriting books are bullsh*t,” said American writer, director and producer Brian Koppelman a few months ago. “Watch movies, read screenplays. Let them be your guide.” He was speaking as part of his series of six-second screenwriting tips on Twitter’s video app Vine. However, he later admitted on his blog that he found some bits of some scriptwriting books interesting – quite a few in fact – and appeared to approve of them as long as their creators were working screenwriters. What he didn’t like, he explained, were people who “give advice for a living.”
Monday 21 July 2014, 16:12
Without trying to sound too dramatic, the education system does seem to spit many young people out into the world without any idea of what they want to do or how they can possibly explore their options. I was definitely one of those people. But I knew that I wanted to write, at least, so that was a start. And I had funny friends. Some of them were starting out in production (shooting music videos etc), some were bedroom rappers and producers. All of them had funny voices and characters that they could switch into effortlessly. What I proposed was that we put our talents together and work towards...
Thursday 17 July 2014, 15:40Adrian Lester as Ira Aldridge
What attracted you to the story of Ira Aldridge? How did you first hear his story? What research did you do?
I first heard about Ira Aldridge in 1998. Adrian (Lester) did a reading about him at a theatre festival in Brighton. He told me about Ira and his achievements in the theatre in the nineteenth century and I could not believe that I had not heard of him.
I had done a theatre studies A-level at school in Birmingham. I trained as an actor at RADA graduating in 1990. I had worked in the theatre for 8 years by then and I had never heard of Ira Aldridge...