Make It newsletter - for comedy writers and performers

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'Make It' Newsletter
Thursday 19th February 2015
This is our newsletter for those who create comedy. Here's some things we think you might be interested in...
News & Features
North Wales set for 2015 comedy writers conference
Llandudno in North Wales is hosting The Craft of Comedy Writing Conference on the 24th and 25th April 2015. Book before the end of February to get the great early bird rate of £50. Read
Old Comedian Of The Year competition announced
The Leicester Square Theatre and the Museum of Comedy are running a competition for 'comics who've been around long enough to know better'. Read
Newsjack is back
Newsjack, the topical radio sketch show that anyone can write for, is back. Check out the BBC website for the latest instructions on how to submit material (there are now templates to follow). The first deadline is Monday. Read
British Forces TV
Have you been in the Army, Navy or RAF? Forces TV is looking for veterans who can do stand-up to tell their funny stories on camera. Watch
The Comedian's Comedian Podcast
Stuart Goldsmith's super-informative podcast, in which he interviews stand-up comedians about their craft, continues. There's now over 100 episodes for you to consume here: Listen
Mixed audiences
Stand-up comic Bec Hill filmed all her gigs for a year. The resultant edited video demonstrates how comedians working on the circuit end up playing all kinds of rooms, to all kinds of audience sizes. Watch
Morwenna Banks script
Morwenna Banks won The Tinniswood Award for her Radio 4 comedy drama Goodbye. The 100 page script is currently available to view online here: Society of Authors
Video: How to be more confident
A video in which a bunch of stand-up comedians are asked to give advice on how to be more confident on stage. The answers admittedly aren't all helpful, but still. YouTube
How to break into radio writing
7 tips on how to break into radio writing by BBC Radio 4 commissioner Caroline Raphael. Write Track
BBC Writersroom
The BBC Writersroom website has had a design revamp. Head over there to get example scripts, advice and more. The key bit of info is the next Comedy Script Room submission window is 9th March to 2nd April 2015. Visit
Radio 4's new Commissioning Editor
Sioned Wiliam has been appointed as the new Commissioning Editor for Comedy on BBC Radio 4 and Radio 4 Extra. Read
Ask The Industry podcast
New-ish stand-up comedian Simon Caine launched this podcast recently to get some of the industry-based questions he has answered. Guests talking in-depth (sometimes for hours) include critic Bruce Dessau and club boss Hils Jago: Listen
Idil Sukan on photography
Idil Sukan, one of the best photographers in the industry, recently wrote this piece breaking down how much a good photoshoot costs and bemoaning how comedians and agencies don't budget enough for that kind of thing: Chortle
James Cary's blog
We recommend James Cary's blog in every newsletter, but with good reason: his sitcom related posts are always of interest. Recent topics include receiving script notes, and the different types of guest character. Read
Comedy Course
HOW TO WRITE COMEDY - JAMES CARY AND DAVE COHEN
Everything you need to know about sitcom writing and making a living at comedy from two guys who know their stuff. March 12th, 13th and 20th, 10am to 4:30pm in London. Details here
Mention 'BCG' for a special discount rate!
Guide Spotlight
In each 'Make It' newsletter we shine a spotlight on a project posted to our showcase forum...
This Glorious Monster
Posted by loego, this sketch about a rather sinister trip to the opticians is described by those in the thread as 'very funny', 'great stuff', and 'very League of Gentlemen, but with a more manic edge to it'. Check it out for yourself: View
Message Board Posts...
Here are some quotes from our message board...
"It seems incredibly difficult to get a sitcom you've written read, let alone produced. So I was just wondering, in 50 years time say, when current writers have moved on to pastures new ahem, who will be writing the sitcoms?!" Jodan in Writers' Discussion
"We have set up a weekly workshop/performance space for comedy writers and performers in Eastleigh, Hampshire. We are looking for new members." Courthousecomedylab on Writing Opportunities
"Is it better to write out one characters whole plot line for an episode at a time and then the next ones and then interlace the scenes from the two after or do it chronologically?" sean knight in Writers' Discussion
"Sooo, I haven't been on stage for 6 weeks. This is a long period for me since I'm in the beginning of my career as comedian. How to get back in the 'flow' again?" lux8a in Performance Discussion
"I struggle to plan but have always been told to plan, research and know everything about the characters I am writing. Does anyone else just start with an idea and a blank page?" Sam Wiliams on Writers' Discussion
"Would anyone be willing to share a sketch or ad that they've got used in the show? Would love to look over stuff they've used before." MrBoombastic on Newsjack
"I've just launched a new live sketch show in Glasgow called Beyond a Joke and I'm putting out a general call for scripts from anyone who thinks they can deliver a genuinely funny sketch or sketches for a comedy stage." elmonstro in Writing Opportunities
There's also lots of people looking for a comedy writing partner, so if you're looking for someone too visit Writers' Discussion
Big Comedy Conference
Thank you to everyone who came to our conference in November to hear from the likes of the TV commissioners, Hamilton & Jenkin and Graham Linehan. The feedback has been really great, and it's been exciting to hear some success stories already occurring as a result of what was learnt and the contacts made there.
We recorded all the talks so, whether or not you were there, hopefully there'll be something for you to hear in a few months time. Before we can release any audio though we need to go through the process of getting the permission of the speakers - they're busy people, so this may take a while.
It's looking unlikely that we'll do another Big Comedy Conference this year - sorry - but we are contemplating putting on another day in early 2016. Watch this space for news. In the meantime, look out for us at the Edinburgh Festival, and hopefully see you at the Craft of Comedy Writing Conference in April!
A quick plug: The DVD we filmed of the 2013 conference is still as relevant and interesting as ever. Does one need an agent? How do you get producers to read your work? How do you write for kids? What is the best way to create sitcom characters? All these questions and more answered by the likes of Jo Brand, Al Murray, John Finnemore and some of the country's top producers and agents. More information on the DVD
Thanks for Reading
We'll be back in your inbox next month with another 'Make It' newsletter. In the meantime keep an eye on our website for lots more general news and features...
The British Comedy Guide
     
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