“This is all about my work as a scriptwriter/scriptreader and what it’s like and how I feel about it on a day to day basis.”
That was how my very first post began on Friday 12th August in 2005. As I type, it’s Wednesday 12th August, 2015. Phew-wee. Tempus has fugited. When I started the blog, I had been a full-time freelance writer (or unemployed as my wife likes to put it) since 2000. These are the credits/achievements I had to my name:
- Freelance script reader for Working Title, Miramax, Pathe, UK Film Council, amongst others
- Writer, two episodes of Doctors
- Writer, one episode of The Amazing Adrenali Brothers!
- Writer/director of a no-budget short film, On The Death Of His Wife
- Winner of the BBC Tony Doyle Bursary For New Writing 2004
Whilst I’ve been blogging:
- Script editor on a couple of feature films: Kings, and The Man Inside
- Dialogue writer on Colin McRae: DiRT computer game
- Set up the Red Planet Prize with Tony Jordan in 2007
- Writer, two episodes of EastEnders
- Started the UK Scriptwriters Podcast with Tim in 2010
- Writer on various kids’ show, including Sofia’s Diary, Roy, The Octonauts, Fleabag Monkeyface, Rocka-Bye-Island, Hey Duggee, The Hive and Thunderbirds Are Go!
- Writer/director of award-winning supernatural short film, Origin
- Writer/director of comedy web series, Liquid Lunch
- Director of comedy short film, After School Club
- Co-writer/director of live-action family film, Who Killed Nelson Nutmeg?
That’s not a bad run, is it?! The blog has been a way to try to highlight my experiences, and share the practicalities of being a scriptwriter in the UK. On the personal front, there’s been a couple of back operations, a house move, and a significant crisis of confidence along the way, but also a gratifying return to physical and mental fitness, too.
The Red Planet Prize is a notable hit on the list. I’m often asked: ‘why do this? why help other writers?’ The truth is, this is the kind of help I would have loved when I started. It’s important to share what you can, to help those who might be unsure about life in the freelance screenwriting world. It can be a daunting prospect. It doesn’t need to be. Plus, the realities involved in being a writer aren’t really spoken about, even when it looks like you’re doing OK, so it’s good to keep things grounded.
The ‘scribosphere‘ has changed significantly since 2005. Nowadays, information and interaction feels fragmented across various social media hotspots. But yet the scribosphere is still a vastly friendly community, and crammed full of helpful advice if you know where to look or who to follow.
So even when I think the blog has maybe had its day or people are more interested in a long list of tweets rather than a blog post, I think it’s still useful to carry on with the old school style of blogging. Who knows, I might be wrong. The best of the blog is still available, and my homepage has everything neatly listed so you can find things easily. Also, Tim and I have the UK Scriptwriter’s Survival Handbook coming soon, which covers a lot of ground, but I’m always happy to take requests or questions or topics for blog posts, so feel free to email me directly if it gets a bit quiet around here. Work is going fairly well at the moment, and there’s exciting developments with Who Killed Nelson Nutmeg? so no doubt I’ll be sharing relevant updates as and when they happen.
Until then, thanks for checking out my little corner of the web! If you’ve been hanging around these parts for a while, I hope you’ve found some of it interesting and/or useful.