Three months. Not good, but kind of inevitable.

.. since my last post. But I’m back now, anyway.

I’ve put up some clips on YouTube from a indie sitcom pilot I did a long time ago in a universe far far away.

It’s an innuendo happy Jane Austen/Henry Fielding-esque romp, which my co-writer, Peter Thornhill directed, and I produced, call Sedgefield Park. We raised the money in a very complicated and clever scheme from one of EM Media’s predecessors, EMMI, and used it as a calling card. So this is the first time it’s been put before an adoring public.

The three YouTube clips are Pig Whispering, Wedding Bells, and Bush Trimming, and Tearstained Letters.

Or they’re here:

The wimpish Mr Nancy confronts his old adversary Major Boner:

Meanwhile, the Squire’s two handymen, Perkins and Grummock, show off their talent for ‘pig whispering’, encouraging Mr Nancy’s recalcitrant boar Percy to romance his own prize sow, Twinkie.

While Mr Nancy’s genteel intended, Jane assess Major Boner’s charms…

And Mr Nancy spies on their courting:

Enjoy.

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Online writing. OMFG.

Online writing. Yay. It’s free, there’s no barriers to entry, there’s no barriers to readers (save the little matter of internet access, and who hasn’t got that, right?), and its edgy cutting-edgeness of edgiosity on the edgability is so, like edgy, yeah? Kewlio.

Well, no. Not if you want to get paid. You’re either writing upmarket adverts, like Kate Modern (not that adverts need compromise your drama, just in case Neil Mossey‘s reading) etc. or you’re, apparently, a grooming teenagers for Da Man:

I am paid to post comments and send emails in the characters’ voices to the personal pages of people I don’t know, a form of legitimised grooming. This is one of the big worries about social networking sites. I wonder whether I am on shaky ground and what the boundaries are because what I am doing is starting relationships and everyone knows they are two-way. So as the lead gets a love interest, I deal with many young girls demanding acronym answers to the great questions of life and love. Another part of this writing gig, it seems, is being manipulated by 11-year-olds daily.

This is from a piece posted on 12 Point, the online successor to Scriptwriter magazine (for which I’ve written and been paid by, I’ll have you know), by a 38 British woman whose job is pretending to be fictitious characters online, salaried – SALARIED – by a big American studio.

So this is how you make a living out of the brave new online world… I’ve been a reporter, a government spindoctor and now I’m a freelance PR, and even I find this a bit, well, yucky.

Or, like me, you keep doing basically old fashioned copywriting that just happens to end up on websites. You can read more about it here. That’s a call to action, btw.

NB (1) 12-Point. I’ve linked to it but it’s a pay site, so unless you’re already a member you probably won’t be able to read the full piece. However it’s a good site for UK screenwriters, and you should sign up.

It just goes to show you can’t be too careful

David Mitchell (the one, as per his twitter description ‘who’s in Peep Show and things, not the novelist or the former Tory MP’) saw a sketch of mine on Monday night, in a pub cellar near the BBC. It, plus about a dozen others, were the fruits of the loins of a BBC comedy workshop for people who’d got stuff on Recorded For Training Purposes on BBC Radio Four.

I felt sorry for him. Not because of my Crime Festival sketch – necessarily – but because he was sitting at the front of an audience of about 40, max, thirty of whom had written stuff he was watching. The other ten were Radio Four comedy producers. Eyes were on him. Would he laugh? Would he cry? Would he slump comatose from his stool into the lap of a Radio Four producer?

My wife had already subscribed to his Tweets. She had instructions to text me if he twittered about the brilliance of any of the sketches. He didn’t. Not even mine. Actually he mostly looked bemused, although he did laugh a couple of times. Not even at mine. Nor did he slump into a lap. Not even mine.

But then neither did he slag them off, presumably because he’s far too nice and professional. Or he couldn’t be arsed. Or he was focusing on aiming his slump at a specific comedy producer.

Most likely though, he knows you just can’t be too careful.

Freelance writer

I’m a freelance copywriter, PR, producer based in the East Midlands.

 

Amongst my many talents, there are:
  • DVD writing and production
  • Conference and speech scripts
  • Brochures and magazines
  • Copywriting
  • Website copy and management
  • Press office and media handling
  • VIP and event handling
  • Media training
  • Crisis management
  • Press releases

There’s more information on my real actual proper website…