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Monday, 16 March 2009

Radio 4 Offers Round

Right. As anyone who reads my blog is naturally deeply intelligent and creative, I thought I'd give y'all a heads up. The Radio 4 Offers Round is now open - it runs twice a year, so you get the opportunity to get your feelings stamped on, not once but twice! Here's a link to a more detailed blah I gave on it:

Anyway, you have till 24th March to come up with An Idea. What happens is you think of a book you'd like to adapt or a fantastic comedy idea or an Afternoon Play idea, and in the first instance what they want is this:

A maximum 100 word paragraph summarising the plot.
("Brilliant 17th century Danish Prince seeks to revenge the mysterious death of
his father and in so doing loses his mind, destroys his family and overturns the
state of Denmark. Renaissance tragedy. Period verse drama." would do for
Hamlet. 35 words.)

A maximum 200 word paragraph telling us why you want to do it, how you want to
do it and why it would work for Radio 4. Do not use the second paragraph to
continue summarising the plot. Some information about the author would be
useful, especially if he or she is a first time writer for radio.

I'll pass the ideas on to my lovely producer. Radio 4 then sifts through the ideas and decides which ones they want to develop further. You then get to go through the whole thing again, only in more detailed form. I should warn you the odds are horrible, and my producer is an independent so he only gets to bid for about 15% of the total radio 4 output. If you really want to write for radio, you'd be better off getting an in-house producer. Having said that, I've had two series, some sketches and a play through indie producers. But having said THAT, even with a slight track record I'm no better off than a newbie - they rejected everything I suggested last year. Bastards. So it's all about the idea.

Oh and on the very very small off chance of you getting a commission, the pay is shit too. A couple of grand for an Afternoon Play, and about £5000 for a Woman's Hour Series.


Liz said...

Thanks for that, Jane. Where do we submit these ideas to? Or do we send them to you (you could be overwhelmed with stuff to pass on)?

I'm frantically busy at the moment, so probably won't manage anything this time, but next time I might have a go.

Anonymous said...

Hello Jane.

Appreciate the heads up. I may be being a bit dense (I can be, and I imagine that might severely limit my opportunities with the BBC anyway), but are you offering to forward our ideas on to your producer?

If not, fine. If so, that's incredibly nice of you.

Thought I'd ask, cos I've missed so many opportunities in life through not asking. I remember missing out on an awesomely delicious-looking chocolate eclair at a kids party when I was 8 because I was worried I'd look like a pig.

The pain never goes.



Jane said...

Hi Liz

Yep - pass them onto me and I'll pass them onto my producer. But do follow the instructions - length wise - 100 words summarising the plot and 200 words (or less) on why you want to do it and why it would be so great on Radio 4. (And saying - it's a fuck of a lot cheaper than telly although true isn't a good enough reason)

Hello Jim

Yes. I will pass the idea onto my producer. See above.

Anonymous said...

Thanks Jane, I have a couple of things in development so I think I'll give it a go.

Must get some kind of internet Id thingy so I don't keep appearing as 'Anonymous' on peoples blogs.


Antonia said...

Darn it. Just seen this. Never mind, if you do the same thing again next time round, I'll send something. How nice of you to do this, though.