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We have a range of training courses running this Autumn and Winter through our own Skriva Writing School and delivered outside at University of Edinburgh. Courses are at different levels so check which is right for you. If in doubt, get in touch and we will help you choose.



Screenwriting 1: an introduction to writing for film and television (10 weeks) STARTS 25 September 2013

A back-to-basics course for complete beginners or any writer who wants a refresher in how to start writing for the screen. Delivered for University of Edinburgh - part of a 30-week, year-long foundation programme.

Classes run weekly on Wednesdays.

For details and bookings go here



Writing Moving Pictures (6 weeks) STARTS 17 September 2013

Writing visually is the number one skill of a good screenwriter. When you write for the screen, you are writing for moving pictures. Action, image and sound are the core strengths of film and television. It is also how you make the reader "see" your story.

This 6-week module concentrates on the craft of visual storytelling. We will look at how to write vibrant images, movement, space and texture - all in ways that capture the reader's attention and makes them want to see your storytelling on screen.

We will cover:

  • Static settings vs Dynamic Settings
  • Character through Action
  • Writing Action for Impact
  • Using Tension, Perspective & Comedy to make a scene move
  • Writing set-ups and payoffs
  • Writing organic action

Classes are a mixture of lecture and workshop. Students will get the chance to develop their writing outside of class and workshop it with fellow students inside of class.

Classes take place every Tuesday evening 6.30 to 8.30pm from 17 September to 22 October 2013 at Skriva Writing School.

For details and booking, go here



Writing Original Television Scripts (5 month development workshop) STARTS 5 October 2013

Got an idea for a new TV series or serial? This course is intended for writers with some experience who want to develop original ideas and scripts specifically for television. The course will take place on Saturdays over 5 months. Students should come with an idea to develop in a supportive workshop environment.

Students will work up ideas and, over the course of 5 months, develop a first draft ready to be presented to commissioners.

We will cover:

  • The structure of modern scripted television (series, serials and sitcoms)
  • Writing the treatment proposal for an original television idea (students will produce their development 'bible')
  • Maintaining dramatic tension and conflict in episodic storytelling (students will learn how to write effective TV episode scripts)
  • Writing and revising the screenplay (students will write their draft scripts)
  • Advice on approaching commissioners and agents

Classes will be a combination of tutor led workshop, reading of work, and peer critique. You must be willing to do your own writing outside of the classroom meetings. Guest speakers and commissioners are being lined up to visit.

Classes will take place from 10.00am to 4.00pm on Saturdays (with a 1 hour lunch break) at Skriva Writing School in the centre of Edinburgh.

Dates: 5 October 2013 / 2 November 2013 / 7 December 2013 / 18 January 2014 / 1 March 2014

For details and bookings, go here


What people say about us:

"I first met Douglas when I enrolled in his screenwriting course at the University of Edinburgh, after he was personally recommended to me by several local screenwriters. He did not disapppoint. Not only is he an expert in teaching the process of screenwriting, but he is an active industry player and consultant, and has been vital in giving advice about film production and education that resulted in the production of my first feature film. If you have any desire to learn about the elements of screenwriting, then Douglas is the person to get in touch with."
                                                                                                                                                                                                                       Shakirah Bourne

"Great course. Great materials. Arguably the best taught and resourced screenwriting classes in Edinburgh."
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Gordon Maclean

"Dougas is a great guy. Solid, hardworking, creative, reliable and conscientious. I really can't recommend him highly enough."
                                                                                                                                                                           Richard Baker, Executive Vice President,
                                                                                                                                           Marketing & Distribution at FilmNation Entertainment LLC

"Have worked with Douglas on a number of creative projects and he impresses me by being quietly effective both at leading teams or as an individual creative. Good to work with and brings a lot of skills to the party."
                                                                                                                                                                            Penny Haywood Calder, MD at PHPR Ltd

"Douglas is a great teacher. Coming to his scriptwriting classes was an absolute pleasure. I highly recommend his courses to anyone interested in writing."
                                                                                                                                                                                                                   Agata Jagodzinska

"I thoroughly enjoyed the course. Thanks to all the comments and feedback I now have a script I feel committed to."
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       Aileen B

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