Writing for Radio

Techniques, tricks of the trade, and thoughts around the writing of Audio drama.


5 Common Twists and a Model for Writing Short One Act Plays

FIVE COMMON TWISTS Twist endings are the result of a sudden reversal that thwarts the outcome a character has been working towards. There are five common types, three that depend on a surprising revelation and two that depend on the intervention of a surprising event. In the first three, the … Continue reading


A Guide to Basic Script Conventions in Audio Drama

THE CONVENTIONS OF SCRIPT PRESENTATION At the outset I should acknowledge that there are numerous conventions in use for script production and presentation. The ones I am writing about here are the conventions that I, personally, use most frequently. They are not original to me, having come by way of … Continue reading


Five Suggestions for Implementing Subtext in Audio Drama

What is Subtext Subtext is the message beneath the message. The meaning beneath the surface that, indirectly communicated, either amplifies, modifies, or contradicts the words that are spoken. It can either be subtractive (where you remove explicit dialog to hint at meaning) or additive (where you add extra meaning to … Continue reading


How to Use Character Archetypes in Audio Drama

ARCHETYPES CAN (BELIEVE IT OR NOT) HELP US WRITE A while ago I took some heavy fire in a conversation because I like using archetypes in my fiction… and while I’m happy to take it on the chin for not using them well, I remain pretty committed to the idea … Continue reading


The Path of Continual Improvement as an Audio Drama Scriptwriter – A Personal Reflection

CONTINUAL IMPROVEMENT – A MODE OF TRAVEL, NOT A DESTINATION Wow, now there’s an arrogant headline. Or at least it would be if I thought I’d arrived at the destination rather than saw myself as a fellow traveller on the path.  This article is my own take on the mindset and … Continue reading


How to Write Immersive Audio-Drama that your Audience can Decode Easily

THE COUNTER-INTUITIVE WAY WE ACHIEVE IMMERSION   I’m unlikely to make any friends with this week’s comments… and they probably belong more properly to a discussion of production rather than scripting – though I think writers need to understand some of these production issues in order to write effectively for … Continue reading


9 tips to Help Write Action Scenes in Audio Drama Scripts

Tips for Planning the Action I’m not particularly good at doing action scenes so a while back I did a bit of research and thinking in order to improve what I do. Here are some general principles for designing action scenes that I arrived at. They help me to be … Continue reading


How to Manage Pacing in Audio Drama Scripts

The Elements of Pacing Here’s some general advice I’ve pulled together from a variety of sources to help me manage the pacing in my scripts. Pacing is concerned with the way we control time in a narrative (both time as it passes in the story, but also the way we … Continue reading


Beginning – How to Begin a Script that Grips

The Elements of a Good Beginning How we begin matters. The beginning of the story needs to establish two essential things. Firstly, we must introduce our protagonist/s in terms of the life they experience as normal (I’ll explain that in a minute). Secondly, we must introduce an event that upsets … Continue reading


Character Arcs Made Easy

Character Arcs Made Easy A SIMPLE WAY TO UNDERSTAND CHARACTER ARCS It’s been fun using this forum to think out loud about the craft of story-telling and story-telling structures. I’ve recently been thinking about character arcs as they apply in audio drama and I thought I’d share the results… Whereas … Continue reading