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BLOG: Suzy’s Story Writing Workshop

BLOG: Suzy’s Story Writing Workshop

BLOG: Suzy’s Story Writing Workshop

When I say I ‘tripped’ and accidentally landed in the world of filmmaking and storytelling, I do quite literally mean I tripped and fell face first onto the set of X-Men Origins: Wolverine. It was 2009 and I was living in Vancouver. The local film industry was thriving off a strong exchange rate and a growing demand for Everything to Be Bigger. In the space of twelve hours, the busy student centre of the University of British Columbia went from a totem pole strewn boulevard to the bustling city of Lagos, Nigeria. Things were set on fire, stunt actors abseiled down the side of my classroom, and somehow, I managed to talk my way into a job. I returned home to the UK with a half dozen films on my CV, finished an MA in Ancient and Medieval History and applied to the National Film and Television School the same day I turned in my dissertation. Following a week-long selection process that was somewhere between Dragon’s Den and Bootcamp, I landed one of eight places on the Producing course. Two years after that, I graduated with a BIFA, an Academy Award, over 200 festival awards and the ability to drink ten shots of espresso a day without vibrating.

If you’re wanting to know what a Producer does, I can’t really give you a single answer. We do everything we need to, some things we don’t, and we attempt to look cool in the process. Some of these things we’re more successful at than others. There are many different kinds of Producers: the money moguls, the deal makers, the story developers. That is where my interests sit. I’ve worked with storytellers from my very earliest days in the industry; with writers and directors, with development executives, and with everyday people looking to find ways to tell the extraordinary stories of their lives. Some of those stories have been hilarious, some horrifying. All have been inspiring. You’ve probably seen a few on TV (one of them was filmed not too far from here only a couple of years ago!).

From a practical side, I’ve been the person that gets the manuscripts on their desk. I’ve been the one trawling through books and articles and clippings looking for the ‘next big thing’. I’ve seen people make the same mistakes over and over and I’ve seen good material get passed over because it ‘doesn’t fit’. Nine times out of ten, the writer doesn’t get any feedback and when they do, many of them have little experience in taking it. Those are just the projects that get finished. I’ve lost count of the number of people I’ve spoken to over the years who have a story bubbling within them and lack either the confidence or the tools to get it out there.

The online market is oversaturated with books, podcasts and blogs (so here’s another one!) promising to help you on your way. Deciding where and how to start can be daunting. Creative writing and storytelling classes can be prohibitively expensive. More than anything, I want to give local creators the encouragement and tools to drive their dreams and ambitions forward. Everyone does have a story in them, but you don’t usually wake up one morning just knowing how to tell it. That’s where the Story Workshop comes in.

See you at the workshop – Suzy x

The Story Workshop is running Tuesday evenings for 6 weeks from 5th February for more info click HERE

To book your place either email corohall@ulverstonenterprises.uk or call Suzy on 07904555582

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