Creating drama: telling stories

Welcome to my website. I am a professional writer and dramatist who creates drama for stage, screen and audio.

Writer Liz JohnThrough my plays, I tell stories to challenge, touch and inspire an audience – to entertain them but, more importantly, to make them think.  As an experienced writer I love collaborating and experimenting with new ideas, and I seize every opportunity to turn those ideas into powerful works of drama.  A couple of years ago, I joined The Archers scriptwriting team (BBC R4) which means I’m let loose in Ambridge!

Based in the Midlands – the heart of England –  I am particularly active on behalf of my region –   I co-founded  the Screenwriters’ Forum, I chaired the Midlands TV Strategy Group,  I’m a member of Big Script Writers and a regional committee member of the Writers Guild of GB, and I founded BOLDtext Playwrights – a collective of eight Midlands-based playwrights.

boldtext-playwrights-cropped-logoOn behalf of BOLDtext, I helped develop the Open Door initiative at the Birmingham
Repertory Theatre in 2014, starting with a pilot season of our works-in-progress performed in their studio space, The Door.  Since then, we have presented a further TWENTY shows there, giving our growing and very loyal audience a huge array of exciting new writing – including shows on the General Election 2015 (The Russell Brand Effect), Sunstroke focused on the refugee crisis, Eurotrashed was about the EU Referendum, Disorder was inspired by issues around mental health,  Behind Bars concerned prison reform, Fake Times explored the fake news we come across all the time nowadays, and most recently The Sentence explored the lasting effect of crime on our communities.  Our shows frequently sell out, sometimes weeks in advance, and the panel discussions are always lively affairs.  Plus our audience gets a discount at Marmalade afterwards, so the debate continues in the bar.  Most recently, BOLDtext collaborated with the proposed WM Police Museum at the Lock Up in Birmingham’s Steelhouse Lane to present some site-specific theatre, Behind Bars: Ghosts of the Lock Up, which brought us a whole new audience.  The show sold out and we are planning to bring it back this summer.

As well as political theatre, I have written both historical drama and madcap comedy for the stage.  My WW1 play, Perversion of Science, was produced at the Mockingbird Theatre (2015), and my co-written stage comedy, Calling for Help, was both interactive & immersive and toured the Midlands to enthusiastic audiences (2016).  Both plays attracted very pleasing 4* reviews.