Stage writing for beginners – knowing your characters inside out

Stage writing for beginners – knowing your characters inside out

Check out Nikki’s fantastic article on stage writing and the hidden stories behind your characters.

Nikki Copleston

I wrote my first play when I was 8. It was called ‘Cat on a Hot Tin Roof’. I’d heard the title and thought it sounded good, so I wrote my own little drama about a cat that climbs up onto a shed roof on a summer’s day and can’t get down. It owes little to Tennessee Williams.

I haven’t written any plays since but I was drawn, a few weeks ago, to a workshop on stage writing, run by Sian Williams and Anne Pearson of the Boiling Kettle Theatre Company.  And what fun it was! Five would-be dramatists chucking ideas around on a Sunday afternoon at the Merlin Theatre in Frome – and emerging with the bare bones of five plays.

Now we’ve met again and spent another busy Sunday afternoon putting flesh on those bones. How? By getting to know our characters inside out.

If you’re going to create…

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Help, I’m a Published Writer!

Help, I’m a Published Writer!

And you thought writing a novel was the hard bit….

Help! An inner voice says as you stand on the edge, toes inching forward, peering down into a particularly black abyss – the realisation has hit, your book needs publicity. You are a writer now – yes, a published writer – and these words do have a certain quality when rolled round the tongue. You’re probably not quite an author though, that’s after the third book; the first is just serendipity, the second a lucky strike, but the third will show consistency. Having braved the radio station’s receptionist and landed your first radio interview an unsuspecting public awaits.

But, there are pitfalls. An interview is not an unhindered opportunity to run through your CV, but the moment you collect together the best bits – the bits that relate to your book and your writing – just enough to make nice short, friendly anecdotes. You could practice being your lighter self…

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From hyphens to Hunting Raven Bookshop – a busy twelve months

From hyphens to Hunting Raven Bookshop – a busy twelve months

When is a hyphen not a hyphen? Author Nikki Copleston shares her journey from submission to publication.

Nikki Copleston

A year ago, I submitted the manuscript of  my crime novel ‘The Shame of Innocence’ to Silver Crow Books, a new service begun by Frome Writers’ Collective.  During the next few weeks, trained readers assessed my manuscript and compiled a report for the FWC trustees responsible for Silver Crow.

When I got that report, I was horrified. I’d always prided myself on presenting my work well, so it was a bit of a shock to see how inconsistently I’d put digits instead of words for certain numbers, and how profligate I’d been with hyphens.  The general rule is that you spell out the number if it’s smaller than 10.  I’d usually done that – but not always. And had I really got this far without realizing you shouldn’t put a hyphen in an adjective like ‘heavily built’. Why not? Because ‘heavily’ ends in -ly, and that’s the rule. Apparently. So someone…

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First Post

First Post

Hi there – this is our first ever blog, so here’s a bit about ourselves:

We’re a writers’ collective, based in Frome, Somerset. We started the group around three years ago with the idea of writers sharing information, organising literary events and generally supporting each other with encouragement and ideas to help our writing.

We’ve grown a bit since then – from having ten writers involved at the start, to having over ninety of us now in the network. We’ve promised ourselves a party when we get to a hundred members!

Now, seems to us like a good time to begin a blog – with different people posting thoughts, notes, quotes, queries and tips, as well as sharing the frustrations and funny bits that go with being a writer and part of a group. We’d love to hear from other collectives/groups/writers out there too.

If anyone would like to look us up, we’re at fromewriterscollective.co.uk and on Facebook and Twitter.

We’ll post again soon, but – meanwhile – back to the writing!

Frome Writers’ Collective (FWC)

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