Writing for stage and screen

Screenwriting & Playwriting Courses Online & in London

Behind every masterpiece, lies a captivating script. Delve into the magical world of screenwriting and playwriting, and learn the vital elements required to create an effective screenplay and script. Develop your writing skills, analyse scripts, and discover what it takes to reach a professional level.  

Plus, you’ll get to grips with the fundamental writing principles, and master the technique of bringing your idea and script to life. You’ll explore everything from developing onstage characters to constructing storylines, too. 

Above all, screenwriting and playwriting is a creative process. At City Lit we help you through every step of the way, from dealing with writer’s block to pushing you to your creative limits. Not only that, but you’ll also be working and engaging with like-minded individuals, who are all in the process of honing their craft. 

Courses available both in-person and online

We offer a range of courses allowing you to choose between online and in-person learning. All our courses are live, interactive, and taught by expert tutors. No matter how you prefer to learn, you’ll receive the same great City Lit experience. See our guide to online learning for more information about accessing our live online courses.

Our writing students frequently go on to further study or publication. Read their success stories.

You'll learn from experience tutors that are all published authors and experts in their field. Learn about their recent accomplishments.

Discover the key elements of dramatic writing for television, cinema and the stage. Explore character and conflict, story and structure, and receive feedback on your work as you progress from first idea to finished script. All our writing courses are taught by practicing writers.

City Lit's writing students frequently go on to further study or publication. Read their success stories.

Our tutors are published authors and experts in their field. Learn about their recent accomplishments.

For the latest news, courses, events and competitions, stay in touch with the Department on Facebook and Twitter.

Many of our courses are delivered online. For more information about our live online courses, please see our guide to online learning.

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  1. Writing political comedy
    ONLINE, Weekend
    Course start date:  Sat 22 Oct 2022

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Kate Smurthwaite
    When it comes to subjects for comedy, the news media never seems to run out. Learn to write political comedy from pithy one liners to satirical columns and monologues using techniques from professional comedy script writers.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £69.00 Senior fee £69.00 Concession £35.00
    Rating:
    96% of 100
  2. Writing comedy for TV in the online age
    ONLINE, Weekend
    Course start date:  Sat 5 Nov 2022 (and 2 other dates)

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Alan Nixon
    The opportunities to develop narrative comedy are multitude. This course led by an Emmy award-winning producer, explains how to identify your outlets and modify your projects accordingly.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £69.00 Senior fee £69.00 Concession £35.00
  3. Comedy sketch writing
    ONLINE, Weekend
    Course start date:  Sat 19 Nov 2022

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Kate Smurthwaite
    Discover the art of creating a great comedy sketch. Study the brilliance of classic sketches and learn how to deploy their techniques in your own work.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £69.00 Senior fee £69.00 Concession £35.00
    Rating:
    100% of 100
  4. Jump start your play
    ONLINE, Weekend
    Course start date:  Sat 3 Dec 2022 (and 1 other date)

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Brian Mullin
    Have you got a script idea but not yet put pen to paper, or a script you started but never finished? This intensive short course will help you inject new energy into your idea – and get started writing. Only suitable for those with playwriting experience.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £69.00 Senior fee £69.00 Concession £35.00
    Rating:
    98% of 100
  5. Playwriting: a taster
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Mon 5 Dec 2022

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Brian Mullin
    Give playwriting a try in this fun and supportive one-off taster session. Ideal if you want to unlock your imagination and express yourself, but need a bit of encouragement to get started.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £10.00 Senior fee £10.00 Concession £10.00
    Rating:
    100% of 100
  6. Screenwriting: a taster
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Thu 8 Dec 2022

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Alan Nixon
    Give screenwriting a try in this fun and supportive one-off taster session. Ideal if you want to unlock your imagination and express yourself, but need a bit of encouragement to get started.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £10.00 Senior fee £10.00 Concession £10.00
    Rating:
    100% of 100
  7. Ways into screenwriting: a taster
    Weekend
    Course start date:  Sat 7 Jan 2023 (and 4 other dates)

    Location on this date:  Online (other locations are available)

    Tutors:  Clive Ford
    Want to write scripts but don't know how to start? Discover the basics of screenwriting - character, conflict and more - on this short online course that will help you shape your ideas and get your story going.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £69.00 Senior fee £69.00 Concession £35.00
    Rating:
    100% of 100
  8. Developing your screenwriting
    Course start date:  Mon 9 Jan 2023 (and 2 other dates)

    Location on this date:  Keeley Street (other locations are available)

    Tutors:  Alan Nixon
    Continue your screenwriting journey in this practical intermediate course. Writing exercises, presentations and screenings will teach you key skills, and you’ll begin to produce work and an outline for a full-length project.
    Full fee £209.00 Senior fee £209.00 Concession £105.00
    Rating:
    94% of 100
  9. Television screenwriting
    Course start date:  Tue 10 Jan 2023 (and 3 other dates)

    Location on this date:  Online (other locations are available)

    Tutors:  Ray Grewal
    Do you want to write a script for television? What do you write and where do you start? Through exercises and examples, this course will assist you in developing your own projects.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £209.00 Senior fee £209.00 Concession £105.00
    Rating:
    100% of 100
  10. Advanced playwriting
    ONLINE
    Course start date:  Tue 10 Jan 2023 (and 2 other dates)

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Brian Mullin
    Dive deeper into the key elements of writing for the theatre, gain fresh critical insight into your own writing, and produce a new draft of your work. This course is designed for experienced playwrights who have work in-progress.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £219.00 Senior fee £219.00 Concession £110.00
  11. Ways into screenwriting
    Course start date:  Wed 11 Jan 2023 (and 5 other dates)

    Location on this date:  Keeley Street (other locations are available)

    Tutors:  Alan Nixon
    Learn to write for the screen on this practical, introductory course. Writing exercises, presentations and screenings will teach you key skills, and you’ll begin to produce work and an outline for a full-length project.
    Full fee £209.00 Senior fee £209.00 Concession £105.00
    Rating:
    94% of 100
  12. Advanced playwriting workshop
    Course start date:  Fri 13 Jan 2023 (and 2 other dates)

    Location on this date:  Keeley Street

    Tutors:  Brian Mullin
    Dive deeper into the key elements of writing for the theatre, gain fresh critical insight into your own writing, and produce a new draft of your work. This workshop is for experienced playwrights with ongoing projects.
    Full fee £309.00 Senior fee £309.00 Concession £155.00
    Rating:
    94% of 100
  13. Developing your playwriting
    Course start date:  Tue 17 Jan 2023 (and 2 other dates)

    Location on this date:  Online (other locations are available)

    Tutors:  Dawn King
    Continue to explore the key elements of dramatic writing, and benefit from supportive and detailed feedback on your own work. New students with some playwriting experience are welcome to join.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £209.00 Senior fee £209.00 Concession £105.00
    Rating:
    96% of 100
  14. Reading for writers: great plays (a fortnightly course)
    ONLINE
    Course start date:  Wed 18 Jan 2023 (and 1 other date)

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Brian Mullin
    Imitation is more than just a form of flattery - it's a tool to discover your own writing craft! Delve into a series of famous playscripts to understand their mechanics and their unique approaches. Then apply your insights to your own writing through in-class exercises.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £129.00 Senior fee £129.00 Concession £65.00
  15. Ways into playwriting
    Course start date:  Thu 19 Jan 2023 (and 2 other dates)

    Location on this date:  Keeley Street (other locations are available)

    Tutors:  Dawn King
    Explore the fundamental techniques of writing for the stage in this introductory course. Get to grips with dialogue, character, story and structure, and start work on your own play.
    Full fee £209.00 Senior fee £209.00 Concession £105.00
    Rating:
    85% of 100

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