Advanced TV Drama Writing Initiative Announced

MediaXchange and Creative Skillset’s High End TV Council have announced an impressive slate of drama industry expertise for the 15 participants in their advanced TV Drama writing initiative.


MediaXchange and Creative Skillset’s High-End TV Council have announced an impressive slate of drama industry expertise for the 15 participants in their advanced TV Drama writing initiative.

Advanced Writing for TV Drama is an innovative combination of tutorials, seminars, workshops and shared experience which comprises three modules, spread over 8 months, to allow writers to develop advanced skills under the stewardship of the industry’s leading writers, development execs and producers.

The programme will focus on evolving participants’ writing skills, growing their knowledge of the industry and giving them the professional expertise to become valuable and sought-after resources within the business of TV Drama. It will also, simultaneously, work towards the goal of creating a commissionable original project for each participant. 

Module 1 Experts include:

  • Jane Featherstone, managing director, Sister Pictures
  • Paul Abbott, writer, No Offense, Shameless
  • Chris Aird, head of drama (London), BBC
  • Jed Mercurio, writer/creator, Line of Duty
  • Bryan Elsley, writer/producer, Skins, Clique
  • Serena Cullen, producer, Mount Pleasant 
  • Tony Wood, managing director, Buccaneer Media
  • Julie Geary, writer, Cuffs, Secret Diary of a Call Girl
  • Roanna Benn, managing director, Drama Republic

These experts will work with the participants to provide a foundation of the essential skills in advanced TV writing in the first module (July 10th-14th). This module offers participants a comprehensive insight into the fundamental skills required to be a useful member of a Series writing team in addition to the skills applicable to the advancement of the writer’s own career as a creator of shows.

The second (Collaborative Writing) and third (Working with Project Partners) modules will follow in October 2017 and January 2018.

Katrina Wood CEO of MediaXchange comments: “We are delighted that so many leading figures in the industry are dedicating time to support writers seeking to develop and hone their skills to better succeed in a fast-changing and increasingly international  Drama sector. We are hugely encouraged, although not surprised, at the quality of participants for 2017, the first year of Advanced Writing for TV Drama. I am sure the programme will be a richly productive experience for the participants who will be able to apply what they learn to accelerate their careers in the vibrant TV drama industry."

Kaye Elliott, High-End TV Lead, Creative Skillset: “The High-End TV Drama Levy is proud to support this Advanced Writers Programme. The excellent line up of experts and participants is testament to MediaXchange's long-standing reputation in supporting the development of new writers. We anticipate many positive outcomes from this high profile and challenging initiative, which demonstrates our commitment to developing the skills and supporting the progress of high-end drama talent in the TV industry.” 

The premier division experts for the first Advanced Writing Skills project will be working with an experienced and highly talented group of participants from across the UK. The partners believe that each participant demonstrates the pedigree and ambition necessary to make big strides through the programme and has the promise to become a significant player in the high-quality business that is British Television Drama.

A full list of participants follows:

  • Karen Brown, award winning writer for stage, radio and TV
  • Melissa Bubnic, London based Australian TV scriptwriter
  • Ishy Din, from Middlesborough with credits in TV and for the Stage
  • Jimmy Dowdall, from Chester who works closely with TV legend Paul Abbott    - more follows
  • Brendan Foley, former journalist from County Antrim, now an award winning author and scriptwriter
  • Alastair Galbraith, former actor and director turned scriptwriter, originally from Scotland and now based in Ipswich
  • Vivienne Harvey, also from Scotland, writes for both TV and radio
  • Kit Lambert, from Cardiff, with a host of TV and theatre writing credits
  • Jane Marlow, former writer for Broadcast Magazine, she’s has been writing for continuous drama and other formats for several years
  • Regina Moriarty, a former photographer and probation service tutor turned RTS Award winning scriptwriter
  • Ben Morris, who has a raft of script executive credits to his name
  • Laura Neal, a 2012 Broadcast Magazine Hot Shot with a strong list of theatre and TV writing credits
  • Carol Russell, with a portfolio that includes radio, TV and films
  • Tracy Spottiswoode, Cardiff based award winning writer, director and animator
  • Sumerah Srivastav, a law graduate with a background in film production and commercial radio

Full details can be found on the MediaXchange website.

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