Account Login

Blog Archives

Inside the Shed

Sometimes we are really keen to tell our readers everything, to make sure that they understand what it is that we are trying to say. But in this case a useful piece of advice might be: ‘Think really hard about what it is that you are trying to say, then go out of your way not to say it.’ If you are able to do that, then it is likely that what you are trying to say will be less easily revealed and – when readers do finally understand – the effect will be subtler and more powerful.
So here goes…

  1. Imagine a young character, living in a house with a garden.
  2. At the end of the garden is a shed.
  3. You, the author, know that the character’s dog has gone missing.
  4. You know that the character loved this dog very much.
  5. You are going to describe the character wandering through the garden and opening the door of the shed.
  6. You are now going to describe the shed as seen through the eyes of your character BUT…
  7. …You are not going to mention the dog or the fact that it has gone missing.

Armed with this information and without thinking too much, just take your pen for a walk across the paper and see what happens…

Find out more

You don’t have to tell young readers as much as you think

There is sometimes an assumption that younger readers won’t understand what’s going on unless the plot and the…

Find out more

Find your story in a setting

This is a research exercise really – one that will help you find a story out of setting….

Find out more

Setting is your friend

When you write, do you start by thinking about the theme you want to explore? Or is it…

Find out more

Emotionally Engage

If you think about plays you’ve enjoyed, that stay with you, and try and work out why they…

Find out more

Expressing the inexpressible

This exercise is very simple, but it’s an exercise that touches on both the material and language of…

Find out more

It is all about the sound

Radio drama is all about the sound. Think sound before you think dialogue – the two are not…

Find out more

Exaggerate to accumulate

This is an exercise in what the comedian Stewart Lee calls “exaggerating for comic effect.” He was being…

Find out more

Drawing out the comedy

Somebody famously said that writing comedy is harder than writing drama because in comedy you have to do…

Find out more

Archive