Wednesday, November 28, 2018


I'm married with two young sons and I have a part-time job that I work alongside my writing. The little downtime I get is spent with friends and family. Life is very hectic. The time I actually spend writing is at a premium and very precious to me but it doesn't always work out. Sometimes things crop up that kill any chance of spending time in front of my keyboard. Sound familiar?

I used to love going to the London Screenwriters Festival, a wonderful three-day break away from everyday life spent in the company of like-minded people, immersing myself in everything screenwriting, absorbing new information and making new connections. When I returned home I'd always be tired but recharged, refreshed, motivated and eager to get going pursuing fresh leads and ideas. LSWF set me up for the whole year but I was always left wanting more, desperate for more time to turn that renewed enthusiasm into words on the page. If you have ever felt the same, then like me you probably wish there was somewhere you could go for a week where the only thing you have to worry about is your writing. The EZ Going Guest House Screenwriting Retreat is the perfect opportunity that offers you exactly that.

There are only ten places available and the early bird price of £550 ends on the 31st of January, where after it will be at the full price of £699. The cost for a non-participant of the course is £440. You can find the details of the retreat below and the link to the Eventbrite page HERE.


The EZ Going Guest House  - Screenwriting Retreat - March 2019

The EZ Going Guest House is a large, private villa in Sesimbra, Portugal, offering a stress-free environment where you can relax and free your creativity to focus on your writing.

You have an idea - you may even have some words on the page - but everyday life keeps getting in the way of finishing your project. This is where the EZ Going Guest House Screenwriting Retreat will help.

We will spark your imagination, allow you to experiment with form and storytelling and workshop your idea amongst a group of like-minded supportive peers. The week will be productive, creative and fun, giving you the space to fall in love with your writing and providing you with the tools and the freedom to get it done.

You will be supported by our expert tutor who will help you explore and develop your writing in informal morning group sessions, where you can hone your craft with an inspirational mix of workshops and one-to-one advice. Then after lunch, you will be allowed the freedom and space to write, to step away from your normal routine and immerse yourself in the creative process without distractions. Regrouping over the evening meal, you will be free to discuss the day's progress, socialise or even get down to another productive session of writing.

At the end of the week, you will leave with fresh insight into your project, a new support network and more importantly a volume of completed work.

  • 6 nights' accommodation in a private room in the villa.
  • Full Board (local wine with the evening meal).
  • Unlimited tea, coffee and water.
  • 5 days' tuition and guidance.
  • Materials not included.
  • Price is based on 2 people sharing a double/twin room. We aim to avoid single person supplements, but please check with us as it depends on availability.
  • Partners not wishing to join in the writing (or other organised activity) receive a discount of €250 (from full price not inc offers).
Not Included:
  • Flights to Portugal.
  • Airport transfer or pick-up (Lisbon airport pick-up additional €45pp both ways).
  • Swimming pool.
  • Large secluded garden.
  • Free WIFI.
  • Privacy.
I hope to see you there.

Happy writing!

Wednesday, November 21, 2018


When we're children we're invincible. If we're offered the chance to do something we do it. We don't think about it, we don't hesitate, we just act. So why when we get older do we take a step back, analyse things, debate whether we should do them or not and often miss out when we stop trusting our gut instincts? As older writers, we do the same, we stop trusting our instincts and over think everything about our writing.

My current project has been in gestation since the beginning of the year and I still haven't written the pilot episode. I wrote an extended treatment, an astonishing twenty-seven pages long, and began plotting the outline of the series and episode one. But since then I've been going around in circles, closely examining what I've written in minute detail, deleting, rewriting, rinse, repeat, ad infinitum. I ground myself down into a tight little ball and clearly wasn't getting anywhere fast, or at any speed for that matter. In fact, I might have been going backwards at some point. Then Sunday afternoon I went for a drink with my mate Kevin.

Kevin is a highly intelligent bloke and often sees things from a different perspective than almost everyone else I know. That's why I love getting shitfaced with him, exploring the deeper meanings of life as we challenge each other exploring the philosophy of our existence. Somewhere between pint five and six, he said, "Let's go on a fishing trip to Scotland in the new year."

"I'll have to ask my wife," I replied, "But I'll think about it."

"Why? Why don't you just say yes and do it?"

And then we started debating why we lose our instinct to do things as we get older, why we have to debate stuff for ages instead of just throwing ourselves into things as we did as kids, why we should fight this and regain that fearlessness we had when we were young. By pint seven I had agreed to the Scotland trip and emailed myself a note so I wouldn't forget to blog about it.

What I'm trying to get over here is why spend time thinking too heavily about what you're writing? It's wasted time, a time you could be actually writing something new. When you start out as a writer you write what you love, you trust your gut with your characters and your plot. I had forgotten that my best work was written by gut instinct and that I would let my ideas evolve as I wrote them. When did I stop trusting my writer's instinct?

So the message is to trust your instincts. Stop examining or worrying about everything you do in your screenplay. Just go and write the story you want to tell, the way you want to tell it and forget about anything else

. Only when it's finished worry about formatting, plot, structure and characters. Enjoy the ride and let your ideas flow without restraint.

Happy writing!