Playwrights' Competition Calendar

September 2014

1st September

T.S.Eliot Commissions – Old Vic

The TS Eliot Commissions are now in their second year and if you’ve got a story to tell they want to hear from you.  In 2013 they commissioned plays that explored topics such as dystopian future governments, the big bang theory and monogamy in gay relationships. They want writers with big ideas who can tell stories with heart, humour and style.

This year we there are two categories of commission that you can apply for: A play for young people and two plays for adults. They are not looking for completed scripts, but want to hear your ideas for the play you would write should your application be successful.

How to apply:  Applications are made through the online form on their website.  (There are different forms required to apply for writing a play for adults and a play for young people.)

Before applying please read the brief. They also encourage you to read the FAQs.


1st September

Rochdale Literature & Ideas Festival seeking 15 minute plays

Prizes: The winners of each age group of the competition will receive:

  • £50 cash prize.
  • An enactment of the play on Crescent Radio by performers agreed by the winners and the Rochdale Co-operative Members Group.
  • An enactment of the play at Rochdale Literature & Ideas Festival 2014 by performers agreed by the winners and the Rochdale Co-operative Members Group.
  • A free All Across the Arts package of electronic and print media to publicise the winning entry.
  • V.I.P. invitation to the Annual 1844 Celebration of Co-operation in December 2014.


1st September

Lion Tamers Theatre

The Liontamers Theatre Company is looking for submissions for our 2015 North West tour.

Cast Size: Strictly between 2 and 4 cast members. We can allow for doubling
however we must be strict on having no more than four actors. We will
particularly welcome scripts with strong female characters.
Technical Requirements: Again no specific limitations except the need to be suitable for a touring
environment where short get in times limit us.
Length: Full length. To appeal to venues we must have the option of including an
interval. (Bar sales, crikey!)

Please e-mail your play to



2nd June – 1st September

Bush Theatre Submissions Window

What Are We Looking for?
We are passionate about encountering new playwrights through our unsolicited script submissions. We receive unsolicited play submissions twice a year in dedicated windows, these open in the summer and autumn respectively.

How to Submit
Our Summer/Autumn submission window is open from 9am on 2 June 2014 and closes at 5pm on 1 September 2014. During this period, please email your proposals to and include, as a separate attachment, a fully completed cover sheet which you can download here
We are unable to receive or read unsolicited scripts that are:
• sent to us by post
• without a cover sheet
• not full-length plays (1 hour +)
• previously produced
• from writers from outside of the UK and Ireland
• sent outside our submissions windows.
• that have been previously submitted to us



15th to 29th September

BBC Writersroom – Stage Plays and Writers’ prize for radio drama

All Scriptroom entries should now be made via e-submissions, our new online submissions system. Please read the terms and conditions


15th September

Arts Center Group

Call for scripts from young playwriters for the Arts Centre Group 2nd Playwriting Competition.

ACG announces its own playwriting competition with two drama awards for innovative play and creative play scripts, 40 to 50 minutes in length. There is no fixed subject but it should in some way reflect the human condition. The two awards are:

  • The Julian Battersby Award for young playwrights under the age of 30. Prize £300.
  • The Jasperian Drama Award for playwrights from any age. Prize £100.

It is intended that the winning plays will be showcased in part or in whole by professional actors. The awards will be presented on Thursday October 23rd at the Society of Authors, London. Entry fee £10 per text.

Deadline is 15 September 2014. All the details are on our website:


15th September

Book Pipeline

The Book Pipeline Competition, presented by Script Pipeline, is searching for playwrights and authors with material well-suited for film or television adaptation. The winning writer will have meetings with Energy Entertainment (Extant), Benderspink (We’re the Millers, A History of Violence), Lakeshore Entertainment (Million Dollar Baby), and Paradigm to discuss further development.


Acceptable entries include:

  • Novels (fiction or non-fiction)
  • Book Proposals / Pitches
  • Graphic Novels
  • Plays

*Books and graphic novels may be published or unpublished; if published, the film AND television rights must be available

Supplemental materials (illustrations, character bios, etc.) may be included as well.


All entries are judged on the basis of concept originality, writing ability, and the project’s viability of adaptation into a film or television property.


15th September

She Writes

She Writes is an event featuring script-in-hand rehearsed readings of short plays and extracts from work in progress from female playwrights curated and run by 17Percent.

The new 4-weekly incarnation of She Writes, a regular night of new short plays by women starts on 4 August as part of Roundabout Nights (a regular live literature night) at the Alexandra Hotel in Chatham. The format is a script-in-hand performance, showcasing about 8-10 plays on a loose theme at each event. The night is programmed and produced by Sam Hall.

They are currently accepting submissions for the following dates/themes:

  • 29 September 2014 – Byron:  To coincide with the Rochester Literature Festival, we will present a script-in-hand reading of plays inspired by the ‘Mad, Bad and Dangerous to know’, Lord Byron. Submission deadline: 15 September.

(Note:  They are currently prioritizing plays from those who can attend the performances, to get the most out of the experience of seeing their play read.)

What to submit:  Ideally they are looking for plays of 10-15 minutes maximum, but we accept shorter (and sometimes a couple of minutes longer). They don’t have a limit for how many characters, but with a shorter play a maximum of 4 or 5 seems to work best.  They are also accepting extracts from work in progress. Please send a synopsis of the rest of the play, and describe how the piece fits in.

See full details of submissions guidelines for writers.


15th to 30th September

Craic Off – N. Ireland

BBC Comedy Commissioning and BBC Writersroom are joining forces in a talent search to find new comedy gold in Northern Ireland.

If you can invent characters that make us laugh out loud, tell stories that keep us on the edge of our seats, and tease the audience to come back for more, then we want to hear from you. Write it, send it in – and you could be in line not just for a comedy masterclass but you will also get a comedy mentor to help you develop your idea with BBC Comedy producers, and a £1k pilot script commission. This is an opportunity not to be missed – (if your idea leaps every hurdle then you may even get the chance of your work performed at our Sitcom Showcase).

The challenge is to write an original comedy script with series potential. We’re looking for writers that reflect modern Britain, comedy voices that have not yet been heard, and Northern Irish talent that’s just bursting to get on our screens. We are open to different forms of comedy, with great characters that leap out at us, including non- traditional forms of narrative, but we are NOT looking for sketch shows.

You will need to send us a script that’s between 15 – 30 minutes long and a one page outline of how your series would develop. The work you submit must not have been previously commissioned, optioned or produced on terrestrial TV.  You must also be living and working in Northern Ireland.

Read the full Terms and Conditions of entry

Judges: Kate Rowland (BBC Creative Director, New Writing), Kristian Smith (Commissioning Editor, BBC Comedy) and a comedy writer/actor (name to be announced).

Opening Date for Submissions: Monday 15th September 2014

(Submissions will be via our online submissions system – the submission link will be available on this page from Monday 15th September 2014. Please note that all scripts must be submitted in PDF format.)

Closing Date for Submissions: Tuesday 30th September 2014

Winner Notified and Announced:  December 2014

(Craic Off workshops have already taken place on 10th & 11th July in Derry and Belfast)


18th September

Street Voices 5 – Yorkshire

A free playwriting course for Yorkshire-based writers at the beginning of their writing careers, to develop their talent, learn how to write a script and make their voices heard.

Do you love writing?  Do you have something to say that no-one else is saying?

This course is aimed specifically at Yorkshire-based writers over the age of 18.  It will run over a period of six months from October 2014 to March 2015 – on Saturdays and sometimes with a theatre trip to follow in the evening. The group will be led by playwright Aisha Khan and will include sessions with established writers including Mark Catley, (‘Sherlock’ and ‘Call the Midwife’), Naylah Ahmed (‘Mustafa’ and ‘Silver Street’) and Henry R Swindell, (BBC Writersroom).



19th September

Ghost Dog Productions are looking for 10min short plays for our next Playground New Writing Showcase. Deadline is 19/09/14.

The theme is FEARS.

No other rules other than consider the fact that it’s on a small stage in a tiny theatre with limited tech capabilities.

Email your scripts to Please state which theme you are applying for (we run multiple of these!) when you email.

We will also be looking for directors so please email us if you would like to direct a piece.


22nd September

Write to Play – Graeae theatre Company

Graeae Theatre Company in partnership with The Liverpool Everyman & Playhouse, The Royal Exchange Manchester and The Octagon Bolton bring youWrite to Play, a bold new writing initiative committed to developing the skills and experience of Deaf and disabled writers in the North West.

Fresh from its first year in London, Write to Play is breaking out and heading to the North West of England to discover and develop five new writers!

Working alongside leading artists in the UK this paid one year programme consists of tailor-made workshops, one to one mentoring and opportunities to have your short pieces of work performed in front of a live audience.

For full details on how to apply visit the website.

Please be aware that you must:

– Identify as a Deaf or disabled person

– Work or live in the North West

– Be available for select dates from December 2014 – December 2015


26th September

Words and Women seeking submissions about the East of England

The commission means 4 women writers, selected through an open competition, will not only be given paid time to write but will be mentored by Words and Women as well as theatre director Adina Levay and performance poet Hannah Walker.

The resulting new work will be published in Words and Women’s second anthology and performed on International Women’s Day next year.

How to apply: For more information email or see  for entry details.


27th September

Behind the Bikeshed

Behind The Bikeshed are a London based non-profit sketch collective. Off the back of their sell-out show in May, “Midnight in the Garden” they are now back with a new show for October and they want to showcase your sketches!

This time they are looking for any sketches inspired by any song of the Beatles, be it the title or the lyrics. Here are some ideas to get your creative juices flowing:

Magical mystery tour, Octopus’s garden, You can’t do that, While my guitar gently weeps, Yellow submarine, You like me too much, Three cool cats, Some other guy, She’s a woman, Please please me, Old brown shoe, Not guilty, The long and winding road, I’ll keep you satisfied, Do you want to know a secret, Day tripper…

… or probably just as easy for you to refer to this handy wikipedia list:  – or even better, get listening to those old Beatles records of yours!

They are looking for sketches about 2-3 minutes long – please ensure the title of your sketch is also the title of the Beatles song that inspired it so!

Please submit your sketches to by Saturday 27th September 2014 – midnight – please include in the subject line “Beatles Sketch”. They will let you know by Sunday 5th October 2014 if they are able to perform your sketch.


29th September

Writer’s prize – Radio plays

The Writer’s Prize wants to commission the best ideas across the Radio 3 and 4 networks. We are looking for bold, original new stories with characters that will engage, challenge and entertain the audience.

Opening Date for Submissions: Monday 15th September 2014

Closing Date for Submissions: 5pm on Monday 29th September 2014

Selected Writers Notified: December 2014

Submit your script via our online submissions system

Please note that all scripts must be submitted in PDF format.

Read the FAQ’s for the new online submission system

Before entering, please read the full Terms and Conditions

If you are unable to submit your script online for any reason, please refer to clauses 4 & 5 of the Terms & Conditions.



29th September

Very excited to launch a prestigious new writing award and commission valued at over £12,000.
In collaboration with The Langham, London to celebrate their 150th anniversary, Defibrillator has been commissioned to create a bespoke theatrical production which will take place in the private suites and public spaces of the hotel.

The winning writer will become the hotel’s first ‘Writer-in-Residence’ receiving a package that includes a £5,000 cash commission and a 5 week production staged at The Langham, London early next year.
Defibrillator invites writers to submit a brief summary of their idea and approach for the show, with an entry deadline of 29 September, 2014 to




1 Comment »

  1. Book pipeline address is

    Comment by Pete Barrett — 04/09/2014 @ 09:35 | Reply

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