This article recently appeared on BOLDtext member Tim Stimpson’s website.
Thanks to the now ubiquitous Zoom, my office has recently become a classroom. Over the last few weeks, I’ve spoken to almost 1,000 people about the practicalities of writing for continuing drama series, as part of BBC Academy’s ‘Production Unlocked’ festival. On the other extreme, I’ve given one-to-one tuition to the recipients of both the Felix Dexter, and the Galton & Simpson bursaries for comedy writers. And last week I delivered my first two-day course on script editing (again for BBC Academy).
What I’ve enjoyed most is meeting people who work in different fields to my own, but for whom the skills of storytelling still apply. Can you use narrative structure in biographical documentary-making without forcing a person’s life into an artificial mould? Is it possible to use the same story beats you’d find in two-hour movie in a six-minute children’s cartoon? Is the ‘hero’ in a drama functionally different from the ‘hero’ in a sitcom, or are they different versions of the same thing?
If you’d like to know the answers to these questions and more, you can book me to speak at your organisation…. Just kidding! The answers are yes, yes, and they’re different versions of the same thing. In all seriousness though, other places I’ve spoken/taught at include Bristol Old Vic Theatre School, the University of Birmingham, Hay Festival, London Screenwriters’ Festival, West Midland’s Screenwriters’ Forum, Screen Yorkshire, as well as various schools, colleges, and U3A groups.
For more information about the areas I cover, visit my WORKSHOPS page, where you’ll also find some glowing reviews. The people who wrote them all recieved A grades, of course!
Tim isn’t the only BOLDtext member who gives talks and workshops. Details about the training the rest of us provide can be found HERE.