There’s a great opportunity to apply for a recruitment workshop at Lime Pictures for Hollyoaks - read more for details
Story & Script Workshop - at Lime Pictures for Hollyoaks
Storylining on a soap opera is one of the best entry-level jobs into television for a writer or editor. As demonstrated by the above advert, storyline opportunities are advertised by the four big soap operas - and you are likely to be invited to a workshop along with other fellow applicants.
The usual format for a story workshop will be that you are asked to pitch a storyline in the conference for their characters, engage in a story debate and build narrative with other writers, and then submit a written storyline as a follow up. Sometimes a trial period is given in the story department for a shortlisted few - this isn’t training, you must hit the ground running to secure the job, showing natural storytelling ability but also understanding the craft of storyline writing and production requirements. It can be pretty daunting stuff if you’re doing it for the first time but don’t let that put you off. It’s a wonderful opportunity.
I have run many of these workshops over the years and I know that natural flair and talent benefits from knowing the storylining craft. There are books you can seek out about story structure, but storylining on a soap is a particular craft – and one you need to know if you want to make sure you shine at opportunities like this. If you can attend a workshop to learn these skills before being in a recruitment situation it’ll definitely put you ahead of the crowd.
Storylining is also essential to any Script Editor in soap opera. As a Script Editor you are going to be the one who helps a writer take an episode from a storyline document through various drafts to a shooting script – and if you don’t know how to ‘read’ storylines, you aren’t going to be able to support the writer in the most effective way.
It’s also normal for some story work to be done at script stage – you may have five writers across five episodes, and sometimes what works well at story stage doesn’t quite play out in scripts as a producer hopes. And a Script Editor will be asked to rebeat out the storyline and direct the writers accordingly. Or a writer will make changes as they write their first draft and understanding storylining helps you to deconstruct the story beats of a script and assess if it’s working.
Don’t hesitate to look into this opportunity for Hollyoaks – the team there are absolutely fantastic and it’s a wonderful show to work on.
Here’s a tip for you – hundreds will apply, and so the recruitment team will be reading hundreds of applications – therefore make sure your answers to the questions they pose are passionate, informed, spell checked and most importantly, succinct!