The Global Short Story Competition

It’s a monthly short story competition, with a top prize of £100 and a runner’s up prize of £25 every month.

The downside: £5 entry fee.

Still, it’s local (Darlington), it has the backing of Bill Bryson, and it gets entries from around the world. Worth a punt. I just uploaded Them Bloody Kids, which is well below the 2000 word limit. Maybe I’ll get a prize for brevity.

Anyway, if you’re interested: The Global Short Story Competition.

Stingers 2009 Launched

NFM have quietly launched Stingers 2009, their lottery-funded new filmmakers scheme. Only 6 films being made this time.


Stingers Digital Short Film Scheme is broken into two strands this year – Mini-Stingers and Maxi-Stingers. Mini Stingers is open to new writing and directing talent. 3 short films will be made through the mini-stingers strand for a budget of £7,500 per film. Maxi Stingers is open to writers and directors with more experience. 3 short films will be made through the Maxi-Stingers strand with a budget of £12,500 per film.

Recorded for Training Purposes

Submissions are open for series 4 of BBC Radio 4’s Recorded for Training Purposes, a sketch show based around the loose theme of “communication”.

You can find the brief on the Writer’s Room website.

Deadline is Friday 2nd October 2009. As ever, it’s worth a punt, particularly as they’ve come up with 6 communication-related themes to play with:


which may or may not help.

Newsjack – showcase for new comedy writing


Newsjack Website

Newsjack is BBC Radio 7’s new topical sketch show, which seeks to comically scrutinise the news, views and issues of the day.

And they have an open submissions policy.

What they’re after:

Regular Features – Part One

We will include stand-alone sketches but are also looking to establish some recurring features, which you can write for:

Your Voice
These Vox Pops (in which we pretend to ask the great British public what they think) are a great opportunity for one-liners or quick jokes.
In the pilot we chose to theme them around MP’s Expenses. In the series we have decided they can be about any prominent news issue. These vox pops will be heard throughout the show.

From the Archive
Every week we delve through the archives and find out how a fictional show from the past covered topical events of their day.

Miles answers listeners’ letters and emails. These could be topical or just silly, long or short.

Regular Features – Part Two

Celebrity Diary
Try writing a “sneak peak” into the inner thoughts of someone who’s been in the news recently.

A nice opportunity for our cast to do an impressions. e.g. Michelle Obama or Peter Andre’s diary, Joanna Lumley’s blog.

Miles Undercover
Miles does an undercover investigation related to a specific news story, a la Donal MacIntyre

Newsjack does its own parody version of “youthy” fast-paced, bite sized news such as Newsbeat and 60 second news. Hosted by 1 male and 1 female “youthy” presenters.

Another good opportunity for one-liners. At the end of the show these ‘corrections’ pretend to address any mistakes we made in last week’s show.

But don’t let us be prescriptive: you may have characters that you would like to create, a funny movie reviewer or mad royal correspondent, for example.

We would be very happy to include any amusing characters or features that you come up with. And of course, something you come up with could become a regular item in the show.

The submission deadline each week is Monday midday – we will not look at sketches that arrive any later.

The submission deadline for the Vox Pops is later. It allows us to be more topical with those. Please submit these by Tuesday 5PM – we will not look at vox pops that arrive any later.

More info at the website…

The Works


So there’s this new live sketch show in London on July 10th.

Performed in the heart of Soho The Works is a gang sketch show in the style of Saturday Night Live, and an unmissable night out!

“A new generation of sketch” The Independent

I think they’re using one of my sketches, Why I Hate Mechanics. They had me rewrite it, and split it into two parts. I hope they don’t drop it, cos I’d really like to see how someone else performs it (me and Mr George did it live in Edinburgh).  Might even be worth a trip to the smoke.


(Me and George doing it in Edinburgh.)

It’d be cool to see all the other sketches too.  But, y’know, mostly mine, obviously.

The original call for sketches came via their Facebook Group, so if you want to get involved with the next show that would be an excellent place to start.

Chad Stuff on 4Talent

Yes, I spend Saturday nights googling “Chad Banger”. Anyway, just found a thing about Chad Banger and 4mations on the 4Talent website, in which I use the word “democratizing”.

Clicky link: Chad Banger on 4Talent

There’s an interesting quote from Miles Bullough from Aardman about the sort of stuff that they’re looking for:

“We really respond to comedy. We like all kinds of animation, but if something makes us laugh, we’re likely to remember it. We’re looking for people with their own vision, something that isn’t derivative. The intention of the piece has to be clear. And less is definitely more – don’t over-animate.”

There it is: don’t over-animate. Mission accomplished there, I think. See for yourself, when Chad debuts on 4mations, Monday 27th October.

MySpace launches comedy contest

MySpace has unveiled a comedy competition to attract extra clips to its new comedy section.The winner of the contest, sponsored by Trident chewing gum, receives £5,000 cash and promotion on the website which the company says would be worth £250,000.

From now until the September 21, comedians are invited to submit their video clips. Judges will select 15 semi-finalists from which MySpace users will vote for their top six who will perform live at a national awards ceremony on November 27.

Comics will need to submit three clips over the course of the competition, and allow MySpace and Trident owner Cadbury rights to use that material, as well as footage from the final, freely.

Dom Cook, head of entertainment at MySpace said: ‘We are creating the platform for true and credible talent to shine through.’

MySpace recently launched its comedy section using material from Warner Entertainment’s ComedyBox website.

Link via Chortle