The Writers’ Block is running a 3 day training programme for Emerging Playwrights, funded and supported by The Minack Theatre. The outcome of the programme is for the Minack Youth Theatre to commission a selection of short, original plays for Autumn 2021.

Led by writer and lecturer Jane Pugh, participants will work up a treatment and sections of dialogue to present to the Minack directors on the final day.  These free sessions will offer skills development and the time to write, develop and edit as well the chance to try out the budding scripts with performers.  There will be a certain number of paid commissions coming out of this process. Not all participants will have their play commissioned.

“Jane has been a fantastic leader to an inspiring group of writers, it’s been as exciting as it has been rewarding.” 

“I’m still energised by this experience.”

“Jane has a tremendous amount of knowledge. She encouraged us to be experiment and be creative.”


When:  February 16th – 18th 2021 timing tbc

Where:  The Writers’ Block, Cornwall College Camborne, Cornwall TR15 3RD (subject to Covid restrictions).

Who: Emerging playwrights 18+ up to a maximum of 5 people (subject to Covid restrictions).

What:  Why we write a story in whatever its form – in this case stage plays – underpins everything writers do. Our first mission, therefore, is to ask ourselves what we want to write about.  Next, we’ll look at narrative structure and how we craft a story for the stage.  Then we’ll explore characters and a sense of place.  Put them altogether and we will have produced something magical for the Minack.

Cost: The course is fully funded by The Minack Theatre so no cost to participants. We do not have budget for travel and accommodation.


How to apply:

Select one of the following art works as your inspiration

The Starry Night by Vincent Van Gogh

Obedience and Defiance by Paul Rego

Exploding Shed by Cornelia Parker

The Night Hawks by Edward Hopper

  • Write a three-minute play inspired by the painting or sculpture. You can use the work in any way you like. It could be based on the artist’s intentions or your own interpretation.
  • Include brief character biographies.
  • Also include your biography or curriculum vitae and a covering letter saying why you would like to do this course.
  • Correctly format your play.
  • Include all your contact details on your submitted play. Don’t just include your name on the email you send. We must be able to track your work.

We’re interested in your idea, your voice, and how you use the stage to best explore your story.

Send it to [email protected] by 5pm on 18th January 2021

For further information before applying please contact Amanda Harris 07712331421 or email as above.Applicants will be advised of decisions by February 12th


Jane Pugh has worked as a story writer, editor and educator since 1986. She’s worked in film and television for Channel 4, BBC and the ITV network. Her films have won a total of seven awards and she script edited children’s television, long-running drama series, single dramas and serials. A qualified university lecturer, she teaches script and screen writing at Falmouth University. Jane worked at the National Trust bringing history to life through storytelling. She is currently the Community Outreach Facilitator at The Writers’ Block as well as being an experienced workshop leader, offering mentoring to young and emerging writers across Cornwall. She has written for the stage and performs her own comedy and storytelling.