Are Your Characters too W.E.I.R.D.?

There’s a major issue in psychology that may be inhibiting your writing too. Or is it just your audience preference that’s the “problem”? Every day there is a report in the media using the word “could”. Coffee could cause cancer, Britain could be blanketed with snow in the next week or so. Journalists could be time-starved […]

No Such Thing as a Baddie

When I was teaching acting to undergraduates I sometimes had in-depth conversations with them about their characters. Although there are many kinds of acting, including the purely physical and representative, there are some that really like to roll their sleeves up and get to grips with objectives, with motivation, with all the things that makes […]

Why Your Talent is Like a House of Cards

When I was young I decided I wanted to beat a world record – lots of us did and I blame Roy Castle (80’s UK reference!). I’d seen these titans of talent on the TV and narrowed down my potential prodigiousness to beer mat flipping, pogo stick jumping or whisking away a tablecloth to leave […]

10 Things Teachers Can Learn from Actors

Whether its training bored adults in the gentle arts of spreadsheets or taming a combustible room of 7 year-olds, the process is enough to wear down the most energetic of NQTs let alone a haggard old veteran (as you tend to be the year after QTS). At all times of year, the holidays can’t come […]

The Guru and the Flood

Here’s a little story about the dangers of believing too strongly in your own myth. In India there is a special kind of teacher called a guru. He isn’t an ordinary teacher, not by any means; he doesn’t use chalk, ask funny questions or tell you to stop chewing, shut up and sit at your […]

To Play the Actor, Embrace Silliness

Acting is ridiculous. Grown people strutting about the stage in all sorts of fancy get-up and pretending to be other people. Not to mention all the playing at being trees and trying to enact the jealousy of the wind through interpretive arm flapping. Its puerile, its lamentably pathetic, its… its childish! The idea of childishness […]