Sunday 31 May

By popular demand we are going to try writing three-minute plays next week. Three minutes is about three sheets of paper, or about 5-600 words.You can find lots of examples of radio drama here:
Don’t have too many characters: one or two is fine. We might want to act them out. Read the examples to see how radio drama works. 

The examples also show you how a radio play is laid out on the page. You don’t have to do it perfectly, and will find it tricky if you are just using Word or similar, but give it a go. It is worth trying because any day now you may want to apply for one of the BBC’s writing competitions and if you don’t do it right they will chuck you out straight away. 
And remember, the prompt is ‘Dreams’. That can be interpreted in any way you like but should not be the title. 

For anyone who is struggling with how to indicate voice-overs etc, here is the BBC’s official template.
Voice-over is useful because it is another way of telling us a character’s thoughts without having a stooge they tell everything to. Ideally you don’t want either, but that gets tricky. 

Sunday 24 May

This week’s exercise follows on from last week’s. Take your ‘Lost love’ piece and rewrite is as a short story called ‘Lost’, in the third person (He, She, They). Attempt to arrange your material in the form of a series of scenes, using dialogue and precise sensory detail. Imply as much as you state, withhold as much as you reveal. This is really hard, but it will make us all better writers.

Sunday 17 May

For this week, I want you to do an exercise I found in a book. It’s called Lost Loves.

You have to write about someone you have lost, not necessarily because they died. It’s just that they were part of your life and now they aren’t.

Write about a time when you were together. This can be a fleeting moment, a particular incident or a longer period of time. 

Then imagine a scene when you come back together. Represent this as a conversation. What do you say to each other? 

Please don’t make anything up for this one. It’s supposed to be factual. 

Next time, May 24, we will take this autobiographical material and turn it into a short story in the third person, using all the techniques of fiction.