This is one hell of a weird time we're in at the moment, isn’t it? People are going through the waves of emotions and daily struggles we thought we would never face in our lives. People have lost loved ones, people have gained loved ones that they thought they’d never have the time to catch up with again. What’s important is staying safe and mentally healthy during this time. As creatives, it’s been an especially tough time as our industry has taken a huge blow. There’s been a lot of debate about how creatives should be spending the time we have now, when really it’s a personal thing. Use this time how YOU wish. Or don’t use it at all.
We’ve been lucky to connect with lots of creatives over the last few weeks, we’ve jumped on board the Cockpit’s Theatre Maker Zoom every Thursday which has been a wonderful outlet and a great way to keep a routine. We'll be taking part in their online Scratch Night on the 18th May at 7pm. We’ve been writing together. We’ve Facetimed A LOT. Creatively and non-creatively. Discussing what we did at the weekend, what we ate for dinner, how we're feeling and how much we miss each other. But it’s the little things, right?
Our Writing Process: Recently, we’ve had a lot of questions about how we write together. Most people are used to writing alone or with no one else to consider how they write, however, we love to write together. Depending on the project that we’re working on depends on how we start the process. Usually we spend the beginning of our projects together in person, with one google doc and our laptops. Being together speeds up the process as we can bounce off one another whilst writing. If we hit a wall when writing together, we’ll break off separately and work on a specific section each. We'll come back together to see what we've created and then tie it in together. We always show each other our work as we go along in case the other gets an idea, rhythmically or creatively. Usually we find a nice quiet spot in Central London (The National & Soho Theatre) or one of our houses.
With the situation right now, we’re all stuck in the same spot in our homes, which can make it a lot more difficult to differentiate between writing time and I'm going to watch TV time. We’re quite used to writing together over Facetime when we can’t meet up in person so this is what we’ve gone with throughout the past 6 weeks. Sometimes, we’re on Facetime 11am on Monday morning, raring to go and we can’t even get a line down. Other times, we might call each other to catch-up and then all of a sudden we’ve written a page of work. We definitely don’t believe in forcing ourselves to write if it’s not happening. On one side, there’s been many comments on how great all this time we have to write is, but for many, this has seemed daunting as putting pressure on yourself to write sometimes is counter-productive. A lot of us are feeling lots of emotions at the moment; stress, anxiety, the uncertainty of the future, we’re missing loved ones… so, we think we all need to remind ourselves that it is okay to not do too much in this weird time space we have. Just being you is enough and if that does involve writing bits here and there, then great, keep writing. And if it doesn’t, then that is totally okay, too.
Staying Creative: We think this is about taking each day as it comes. Even in ‘normal times’ we have good and bad creative days - so why should it be any different in lockdown? Some days you wake up and feel like conquering the world - iced coffee in hand; writing paragraph after paragraph. But sometimes you wake up, and Netflix is the only thing you want on your agenda! Time is standing still, and it’s important to take this time to nurture our creativity.
In these months you may write the next best-selling play, but you may also learn a new skill or reconnect with family. These things all add to your creative skill set. But if you are looking for things to get the creative juices flowing:
Take walks & discover places you’ve never seen before.
Watch new films & listen to new music - outside from your ‘go-to’ genres.
Try Yoga or Meditation - we recommend ‘Yoga with Adriene’ on Youtube
Offer to read other people’s work, if you are struggling yourself to write
Connect and catch up with Friends that you haven’t had the chance to in a while
Read that book you said to yourself you’d read last summer
Have a go at baking some treats - Check out @_peckishmoments on IG for some inspo!
Try new foods by cooking dinners you haven’t before
These are just some of the things we’ve found to help us stay grounded.
It’s getting to the point that a lot of people probably want to avoid that quiz or that zoom call; if that’s the case, just say I’m not feeling great today and you can jump on board the next one. Don’t beat yourself up for these things.
Staying Connected: Just a reminder that we are still accepting submissions for our next scratch, albeit we aren’t certain of the date yet. If this goes on for longer than expected, we have thoughts about doing an online Scratch Night with fellow creatives to help keep your work moving forward.
If you aren’t sure whether you want to be a part of the scratch night but would still like some guidance with your work. Please do still get in touch, we’d love to help, even if it’s just a second and third eye on your script or idea. We’re in this together!
H & B x