Sessions 2014

Sessions being added now

Over the three days of the London Screenwriters’ Festival we will run over one hundred seminars, workshops and networking events for professional screenwriters. We film most sessions, so if you miss one, or two clash, you’ll be able to catch up later online. For updates about the festival, sign up below.

From this particular Jersey girl who took 24 hours and a 13.5 Force 7 sleepless, overnight ferry crossing to get there, A GREAT BIG THANK YOU!

Jan Caston, Screenwriter

Jan Caston, Screenwriter

Headline

The 2014 Inaugural British Screenwriters’ Awards

The 2014 Inaugural British Screenwriters’ Awards

It’s about time someone put the originators and architects of great storytelling front and centre. And we are rising to that challenge.

I felt like every single person I met gave me something that I needed to take me to the next step of my journey

Emily Southall, Screenwriter

Emily Southall, Screenwriter

In conversation

Echoes in eternity: In conversation with William Nicholson

Echoes in eternity: In conversation with William Nicholson

Nicholson has an impressive body of work, Gladiator, Nell, Elizabeth: the Golden Age, Les Miserables, Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom and of course his hit play (which he adapted for the screen) Shadowlands.  

Getting paid to write funny with David Reynolds

Getting paid to write funny with David Reynolds

Comedy writers MUST attend this hilarious but informative session with Dave, who has been a staff writer for Conan O’Brien and Pixar and is now writing for Adam Sandler and Steve Carell.

Hollywood Classics: The Scripts Of Joel Schumacher

Hollywood Classics: The Scripts Of Joel Schumacher

Joel has directed many movies that we would consider Hollywood classics and in this session we get to explore his varied career through the words of the screenplays he sometimes wrote, sometimes didn’t, but always directed with his trademark flare.

Lessons learnt from the scriptwriting trenches

Lessons learnt from the scriptwriting trenches

In this hyper inspiring and unmissable session Tony talks candidly with fellow writer Barbara Machin, about the high and lows and the realties of the day to day process.   

Writing Breakthrough Crime Drama: The life and works of Lynda La Plante

Writing Breakthrough Crime Drama: The life and works of Lynda La Plante

On so many levels, the work of Lynda La Plante CBE is breakthrough and iconic. Come and listen to her, in conversation with BAFTA winning crime drama writer and showrunner Barbara Machin. This promises to kick off LSF in extraordinary fashion.

It was a wonderful creative bubble to live in for a few days, challenging, informative, inspiring and fun. What more could I want?

Janet Awe, Screenwriter

Janet Awe, Screenwriter

Great British PitchFest

Pitch at the Great British Pitchfest

Pitch at the Great British Pitchfest

This is your big moment… Pitch your killer project to professional producers and top agents. Past sessions have resulted in options AND representation!

The Pitch Factor

The Pitch Factor

Have you got the Pitch Factor? Live from the London Screenwriters Festival, the Pitch Factor returns with CASH prizes and our very own Simon, Cheryl, Louis and ridiculously Scary!

The Elevator Pitch

The Elevator Pitch

Are you good enough to exit the elevator with the million dollar business card before the doors slide shut?

I can only say thank you to the organisers for what felt this end to be a seamless event without hiccups

Neil Hannah, Writer & Director

Neil Hannah, Writer & Director

Script To Screen

'Finding Nemo' script to screen LIVE

'Finding Nemo' script to screen LIVE

Meet screenwriter Dave Reynolds as we record the unofficial DVD chat track for Finding Nemo in this live and exclusive Script To Screen.

Deconstructing ‘Pulp Fiction’ with Linda Aronson

Deconstructing ‘Pulp Fiction’ with Linda Aronson

Universally considered one of the greatest films of the nineties, ‘Pulp Fiction’ also employs fractured narrative, flashback and multi protagonist storylines. Join Linda Aronson as she deconstructs the movie in real time.

Script To Screen Classic: with Joel Schumacher (film TBC)

Script To Screen Classic: with Joel Schumacher (film TBC)

With an embarrassment of riches, we are still working on the best film for this session. The Lost Boys, The Client, St Elmo’s Fire, A Time To Kill, Falling Down, even House Of Cards? Check back soon.

Script To Screen LIVE: 'Silence Of The Lambs'

Script To Screen LIVE: 'Silence Of The Lambs'

Join Ted Tally in this extraordinary Script To Screen LIVE with the Oscar winning and universally acclaimed genre inventing hit ‘Silence Of The Lambs’

Starred Up : Script to Screen

Starred Up : Script to Screen

An in-depth examination, from ‘Script to Screen’ of Brit hit prison drama ‘Starred Up’ with Screenwriter Jonathan Asser.

It was better than going on holiday! I came away buzzing with excitement – no holiday blues!’ I simply cannot wait for the next one!

David Buick, Writer & Director

David Buick, Writer & Director

Practical help

Actors Table Read: LIVE

Actors Table Read: LIVE

How do actors and a director approach your screenplay? What happens when your words are reinterpreted through other artists? Join us for a sensational live onstage performance and deconstruction of one LSF delegate’s script.

Against All Odds: Strategies for writing, holding down a job AND raising a family

Against All Odds: Strategies for writing, holding down a job AND raising a family

It’s hard enough to write a great script, let alone do it in your out of work hours. Add a family to the mix and it seems almost impossible right? Well, not necessarily…

Beyond The Chick Flick: Writing The Female-Driven Screenplay

Beyond The Chick Flick: Writing The Female-Driven Screenplay

Don’t cry into your Haagen Dazs! You can write a female-driven screenplay that sells … without selling out.

Book Signing

Book Signing

Book Signing

Brainstorming Through The Block

Brainstorming Through The Block

Stopped in your tracks by where to go next with a plot point, a character, or a scene? Or maybe you feel it’s just not happening today? Pilar will show you a number of tools that will immediately and powerfully unstick your creativity so the words continue to flow.

Creating Compelling Characters

Creating Compelling Characters

Claudia Myers leads this cracking session about creating complex and compelling characters that hook us into a story and refuse to let us go.

Creating the Nonlinear TV Series

Creating the Nonlinear TV Series

TV and digital drama as well as feature films are increasingly using nonlinear, ensemble and flashback storytelling. Let Linda pull back the curtain to reveal the tools that makes these formats work so darn well.

Creative England: How to wow the Gatekeepers

Creative England: How to wow the Gatekeepers

Paul Ashton and Richard Holmes, Senior Film Execs across development and production, walk us through their top tips for success, the avoidable common mistakes they see every day.  Expect the warts and all truth from the people putting the money where their mouths are.  

Drama, Drama, Drama!

Drama, Drama, Drama!

If you’re keen to write a drama, whether feature, short film or TV, then this session is not to be missed! After years of research, reading and helping writers and filmmakers, Lucy V Hay can reveal best practices for success.

Finding Your Voice: How to make your script stand out from the pile

Finding Your Voice: How to make your script stand out from the pile

An frank talk from Abigail Gonda, Development Producer at BBC Writersroom about how talent gets spotted and what a writer can do to maximise this happening. 

From First Draft to Final Draft

From First Draft to Final Draft

Joe Mefford of Final Draft is here to help screenwriters of all experience levels navigate their way around their scripts with Final Draft 9.

How To Be A Successful Screenwriter: Patterns, strategies and tactics for a lifelong career

How To Be A Successful Screenwriter: Patterns, strategies and tactics for a lifelong career

Meet Robert and Amma, both overnight successes… It only took ten years! What defines a successful screenwriter and how do you keep going?

How to get an agent in 2015

How to get an agent in 2015

This session is an opportunity for you to discuss all of these things and more with two agents. What attracts them to a writer and his/her work? What can an agent do for you that you can’t do for yourself? And what should you avoid when trying to find one?

How to make it in Hollywood without moving there

How to make it in Hollywood without moving there

Hollywood Career Coach Lee Jessup shares strategies and invaluable inside knowledge into conquering the US from anywhere in the world.

How to survive past your first success: Best Practice For a Lifelong Career

How to survive past your first success: Best Practice For a Lifelong Career

Don’t fall after you pass the first hurdle… Get coached for a lifelong career with Hollywood coach Lee Jessup.

How Your Worst Writing Can Be Your BEST Work

How Your Worst Writing Can Be Your BEST Work

Conquer perfectionism and writer’s block by purposely writing terrible scenes and dialogue. You read that right. The worst. You will finish a scene you were stuck on, make yourself laugh and then be inspired to make it better. Bad writing is the new good writing.

I can’t get my script produced: Is it time for me to take the reins?

I can’t get my script produced: Is it time for me to take the reins?

The number one reason so many screenwriters fail to move forward is that all important first credit. So why not produce your own script yourself?

I need a SCRIPT! And I am shooting it next month…

I need a SCRIPT! And I am shooting it next month…

Meet the micro budget filmmakers. They have a problem. They need GREAT scripts. You may get no money but you will get produced. Join the revolution!

Is Your Script The REAL Crime Scene? Cops and Docs, getting it ‘right’ on the page

Is Your Script The REAL Crime Scene? Cops and Docs, getting it ‘right’ on the page

While the foundation of any story is good drama, there is nothing worse than badly researched dialogue and action, especially in crime and medical drama. Meet the people whose lives inspired Prime Suspect and Casualty.

It looks like a script, but is it a film? Writing Visually to excite Producers, Directors & Audiences

It looks like a script, but is it a film? Writing Visually to excite Producers, Directors & Audiences

You may have the world’s most engaging or moving story, but of course the way you tell it is crucial to its success.  

Living in a Stranger’s World: The Joys and Sorrows of Adapting Novels

Living in a Stranger’s World: The Joys and Sorrows of Adapting Novels

When you’re offered the possibility of adapting the creative work of another writer, what do you do? How do you go about it? Where and how do you begin? Join Ted Tally and Daniel Martin Eckhart in this session about craft and collaboration in adaptations.

Off The Cuff: Improvisational Screenwriting

Off The Cuff: Improvisational Screenwriting

Halfway between pure acting improvisation and structured screenwriting, this method can produce spontaneity and authenticity a writer would never find alone with their laptop.

PitchFest Bootcamp with Bob

PitchFest Bootcamp with Bob

Great American Pitchfest Guru Bob Schultz will start every day with a short 30 minute PitchFest bootcamp to get you ready for your pitch!

Scriptercise: 20 minute low impact routine for writers

Scriptercise: 20 minute low impact routine for writers

We all know we don’t get up and stretch enough. And boy do we have our excuses! But deep down we know we should do it. So what better place to make a commitment to a simple low impact change? One that could significantly improve your life?

Taking the room by storm: Networking shot in the arm

Taking the room by storm: Networking shot in the arm

One primary reason writers and producers return to the LSF year on year is for the exceptional networking. It’s also the thing so many of us fear the most. Get a shot in the arm on this short Thursday night session before the LSF and ‘own that room’!

The Art and Craft of Dialogue

The Art and Craft of Dialogue

Claudia Myers leads this informative and practical session focused on the craft of creating great dialogue.

The BIG idea: Finding the organising principle and thematic heart of your story.

The BIG idea: Finding the organising principle and thematic heart of your story.

Writers are often asked: What is your film about? A valid question, but hard to answer when you’re still undergoing development. Get answers to this question so you can both better pitch AND write.

The Craft: Killer style, tone and techniques

The Craft: Killer style, tone and techniques

Is your script a great read?  Is your story on the page? It all comes down to the writing.

The Hour Of Power: Prepare for IGNITION!

The Hour Of Power: Prepare for IGNITION!

So you have been at the festival for a whole day now, and you are about to enter the sweet spot, day two… Get ready to fully ignite and get the very most from the LSF opportunities in the Hour Of Power!

Understanding and Expanding Genre: Using Horror and Rom-Com as Examples

Understanding and Expanding Genre: Using Horror and Rom-Com as Examples

Get inspired to write a horror, or a romantic comedy, or revitalise an existing project with new and original approaches.

Where's the Story Gone? Why originality has become a dirty word in the industry

Where's the Story Gone? Why originality has become a dirty word in the industry

How can we reinvigorate the industry by writing stories that are fresh and original while also playing to the strengths of the commercial marketplace?

Write a what?!  Knowing your treatments from your beat sheets

Write a what?! Knowing your treatments from your beat sheets

Treatments, Outlines, Beat Sheets, Scene Breakdowns, Synopsis, Step Outlines, Pitch docs…the list goes on and is often bewildering. But what are they for? Why should we use them? And what do they look like?  Ludo Smokski is here to help you navigate your way through the forest of development docs.

Writing With Purpose: How YOUR Work Can Change the World

Writing With Purpose: How YOUR Work Can Change the World

What we do as screenwriters can often inspire hearts and minds, even change the world. If ever there was a reason to write, this is it.

Manifesting Success

Manifesting Success

Following their packed to capacity sessions in 2010, 2011, 2012 and 2013, Chris Jones and Jonathan Newman are back to run their highly successful and super controversial manifesting success workshop.

What will actually happen to your finished script? Live script edit

What will actually happen to your finished script? Live script edit

Live and dynamic script redraft, edit, slash and burn… Only for the bravest of writers!  

Where in the ‘real’ world could you just sit down with a stranger at a table and immediately have something in common?

Peter Spencer, Screenwriter

Peter Spencer, Screenwriter

Film and television

Acting Up: Writing to attract the killer cast

Acting Up: Writing to attract the killer cast

Getting a named actor interested in your screenplay will move it from the ‘pass’ pile, to the ‘consider’ pile. So how do you go about writing parts actors want to play?

Deconstructing 'Utopia'

Deconstructing 'Utopia'

Follow us down the ‘Utopia’ rabbit hole and discover how one of Britain’s most ferociously original TV shows got commissioned and produced.

Everything I Know by Kate Leys

Everything I Know by Kate Leys

Industry heavyweight Kate Leys tells you everything she knows that you should know too. Unmissable!  

Getting Commissioned in 2015: What The Broadcasters Want

Getting Commissioned in 2015: What The Broadcasters Want

The seat of power in British TV is occupied by a select group of commissioners – what are they looking for and how do you get it to them so that they can greenlight YOUR work?With Ch4, BBC and Sky.

Made In Britain: Culture Clashes & Revolutions

Made In Britain: Culture Clashes & Revolutions

What makes cultural revolution and class wars such fertile ground for entertaining film and television? And why do mass audiences flock or tune into these films and shows?

Sizzle or Substance? : Commercialism Vs Creativity in TV Drama Series

Sizzle or Substance? : Commercialism Vs Creativity in TV Drama Series

In the cut and thrust world of popular television drama series production, can Creativity work hand in hand with Commericalism or does one over ride the other?

Surreal, subversive and satirical: Inside the head of Charlie Brooker

Surreal, subversive and satirical: Inside the head of Charlie Brooker

Charlie Brooker is one of the most diverse screenwriters working in the UK, and it seems EVERYONE loves his unique voice that cuts through, whether it’s the darkly surreal Black Mirror, gag led Touch Of Cloth or the caustic satire of his Screen Wipe.

The A-Z of Storytelling

The A-Z of Storytelling

Drawing inspiration from the great story tellers of the world, Nik Powell examines storytelling from the point of view of the producer not as is usual from the point of view of the writer or director.

The Road To Writing Southcliffe: Channel Four’s hit drama with Tony Grisoni

The Road To Writing Southcliffe: Channel Four’s hit drama with Tony Grisoni

Join screenwriter Tony Grisoni as he shares his inspirational and instructional journey creating and writing his hit drama ‘Southcliffe’ for Channel 4. This session will offer insight into how you can follow his pathway to success writing TV drama.

Writing Fantastical Television

Writing Fantastical Television

When we think of ScFi we often think of movies, but TV has always been the most fertile ground for innovative fantastical storytelling. Join our panel as we discuss how best to get your work produced.

A whirlwind where for three days, the outside world simply ceased to be

Emmanuel Casey, Writer

Emmanuel Casey, Writer

Have you considered?

Be part of the BIGGEST writing gig in town: Games 5.0

Be part of the BIGGEST writing gig in town: Games 5.0

Not many people know this but the games industry dwarfs the film industry. For the fifth year in a row we are running a Games session, reflecting the speed of evolution and thrilling opportunities writing games can offer for scribes.

Could Your First Paid Gig Be For Radio?

Could Your First Paid Gig Be For Radio?

In the UK we are blessed with BBC Radio 4, fertile ground for drama and especially comedy writing talent to get that vital first break. And the list of Radio 4 alum in extraordinary. Join us to find out just how to get your break.

Getting a writing gig that lasts years: Writing Sit-Coms

Getting a writing gig that lasts years: Writing Sit-Coms

What exactly is a sitcom? It’s a very distinctive genre and a surprising number of writers don’t fully understand how it works. Here’s a chance to learn from the experts.

Why writing for the stage and NOT the screen could lead to greater success

Why writing for the stage and NOT the screen could lead to greater success

Many screenwriters have made the successful leap from screen to stage, where the success model is more immediate than film and TV, both in production speed and financial returns.

Writing for young audiences: Have you considered?

Writing for young audiences: Have you considered?

Writing for young audiences rarely seems to be an entry point for new writers, yet it is demonstrably a huge market that is in many ways starved for great stories. Should you consider writing for young people?

I shall be dedicating my first Oscar / BAFTA to you guys!

Cera Rose Pickering, Screenwriter

Cera Rose Pickering, Screenwriter

Talent fast-track

Get YOUR Script Produced and in UK Cinemas: Create 50 Part 2

Get YOUR Script Produced and in UK Cinemas: Create 50 Part 2

Following the extraordinary success of the London Screenwriters’ Festivals first feature film, 50 Kisses, we are doing it again… And we want YOU to write it.

Meet The Experts

Meet The Experts

A panel of leading film industry professionals provide confidential one-on-one advice to move your project onto the next stage.

Get legal advice in our free legal clinic at the festival

Get legal advice in our free legal clinic at the festival

We all have concerns about our screenplays and career, but often can’t afford a specialist lawyer. At the festival you can get that face time you need, with a media lawyer.

One of the best hours of my life – the Actors Table Read at LSF

Terry Comer, Screenwriter

Terry Comer, Screenwriter

Script Labs

Script Lab 2: Writing Family Films For Disney, Pixar and Hollywood with David Reynolds

Script Lab 2: Writing Family Films For Disney, Pixar and Hollywood with David Reynolds

Returning to LSF’14, Dave Reynolds will again run his uber successful advanced mentoring lab for writers who have a great family film but want to take it to the next level.

Script Lab 3: From Short Script To Short Film... Getting Produced NOW with Stephen Follows

Script Lab 3: From Short Script To Short Film... Getting Produced NOW with Stephen Follows

Undergo an intense process over the LSF weekend, developing your short script to the point where it has a clear roadmap to production… Not one day, but now.

Script Lab 4: Writing Killer TV with John Yorke, former Head of Channel Four Drama and Controller of BBC Drama Production

Script Lab 4: Writing Killer TV with John Yorke, former Head of Channel Four Drama and Controller of BBC Drama Production

Yes, John ran the show at both CH4 and BBC Drama and his CV is ridiculous. If you want to write TV, you can’t get much more qualified than John. This is one Lab you MUST submit to.

Script Lab 5: Creating Fantastical TV with 'Buffy', 'Battlestar Galactica' and ‘The X-Files' Exec Steve La Rue

Script Lab 5: Creating Fantastical TV with 'Buffy', 'Battlestar Galactica' and ‘The X-Files' Exec Steve La Rue

Former VP of Creative Affairs at Paramount, Steve developed a string of iconic TV shows, working daily with writers such as Joss Whedon, Chris Carter and Mike Scully. Seriously!

Script Lab 6: Getting your jokes/sketches performed and broadcast

Script Lab 6: Getting your jokes/sketches performed and broadcast

Ged Parsons is an award-winning comedy writer. Currently working on Have I Got News For You and Mock The Week, Ged has also written for comedy legends John Cleese, Rory Bremner and Smith & Jones.

Script Lab 7: Writing Children's TV, getting commissioned and broadcast

Script Lab 7: Writing Children's TV, getting commissioned and broadcast

Getting your work commissioned, produced and broadcast for the 0-6 year old’s market with Mellie Buse.

Script Lab 1: Creating TV Drama Series with top script consultant Philip Shelley

Script Lab 1: Creating TV Drama Series with top script consultant Philip Shelley

Do you love television? Do you have the next returning hit TV drama series in your portfolio? Then we want to hear from you.

LSF reinvigorates a screenwriters ‘mojo’ and infuses it with the strength to persevere

Dee Chilton, Writer

Dee Chilton, Writer

Open and Close

Festival Opening

Festival Opening

Get fully prepped to get the most from the festival in this kick ass opening that will frame your three day roller coaster. NOT TO BE MISSED!

Festival Close

Festival Close

NOTE THIS SESSION BEGINS AT 6.15pm SHARP AND IS JUST 15 MINS LONG. Join the team for the FABULOUS close of the festival and our promise for 2015.

The best run, best organised and best attended writers’ fest I’ve ever seen…

Karen Krizanovich - Presenter, Writer and Journalist

Karen Krizanovich - Presenter, Writer and Journalist

Social Connection

Dylan Thomas: The Poets are taking over the asylum!

Dylan Thomas: The Poets are taking over the asylum!

Griff Rhys Jones, Owen Teale (Game Of Thrones) and friends take time away from their Dylan Thomas in Fitzrovia weekend to join us for some informal readings celebrating the great poet and his works.

Special LSF 2014 launch event

Special LSF 2014 launch event

Join us for a drink on Thursday night as we open the London Screenwriters’ Festival

Networking Drinks In The Bar

Networking Drinks In The Bar

Don’t be shy – grab a beer and break out those business cards!

The PitchFest is a fantastic opportunity for screenwriters to meet producers and companies that might lead to long-running relationships

Rob Watson, Producer, Poisson Rouge Pictures

Rob Watson, Producer, Poisson Rouge Pictures

Beyond the workshop

Book Signing

Book Signing

Book signing

Book Signing

Book Signing

Book Signing

Script Chat

Script Chat

Get intimate face-to-face time in our hugely popular Script Chat roundtable sessions. Ask our speakers the questions you want answered.

Advanced Mentoring at the Script Labs

Advanced Mentoring at the Script Labs

Get one on one tuition and coaching from our experts in these intensive three hour sessions. Only six writers are selected for each lab.

Get Your Script Performed

Get Your Script Performed

Have scenes from your script read, performed and workshopped by professional actors and directors.

We will read your script: The Script Surgery

We will read your script: The Script Surgery

Need a professional to read your screenplay? Get one-on-one feedback on your script with Euroscript.

Where else can you queue up for lunch with Edgar Wright and Joe Cornish stood next to you?

Andy Wright, Screenwriter

Andy Wright, Screenwriter