writer submissions

Short Attention Span Theatre was set up in 2015 by Tom Brogan and Karen Barclay with the aim of enabling early career writers to see their works staged. Writers will write to a deadline, see their work rehearsed, re-write, and see their finished piece performed in front of a paying audience. The writer is encouraged to attend rehearsals and work collaboratively with the director and cast. It may be that a dramaturg may also work on the script ahead of it being rehearsed.


If you are interested in writing something for us have a look at the criteria below. If you'd like to submit a script to us, we'd be happy to read it. If you have any questions contact us on info@shortattentionspantheatre.co.uk


Tom and Karen, Short Attention Span Theatre


  • The piece should be self-contained and not an extract from a longer work.

  • One submission per writer.

  • Write for no more than a cast of three. Although two-handers are easier for us to stage. Ask yourself if the third character is really necessary, often three-handers can be done, and may be more powerful, with just two on stage.

  • We have a pool of six actors at any one time – Three women (20s/30s/40s) and three men (20s/30s/40s).

  • You can have any make-up of from that pool – three men; three women; two women; two men & one woman etc.

  • No lighting effects, bar lights up and lights down.

  • Sound effects should be kept to a minimum.

  • Scripts should be around 10 to 15 minutes. So that is...

  • No less than 8 pages.

  • No more than 15 pages. As a guide the BBC Writersroom or Comedy Plays sample layouts are both suitable.

  • List your characters and their ages on a page before the play begins. 

  • As few props as possible – Only write in props that can be easily sourced or you know you can source. (So if you have, for example, an old typewriter you can bring in, great, but if you can't lay your hands on one don't write one in.)

  • The set should be created with no more than tables and chairs.

  • Any costumes required should be cheap and easily sourced (charity shops etc).

  • Ideally scripts should be written for the show and not have been performed at other workshops/scratch nights.

  • You should be open to working with a dramaturg on your piece, should one be assigned. As such you should be available to meet with your appointed dramaturg in or around Glasgow in the weeks between the deadline and show date. Although, most dramaturgs are happy to work remotely.

  • The dramaturgs working with us are all current or former MLitt Playwriting and Dramaturgy students at the University of Glasgow.

  • Dramaturgs all work in varying ways, but for a general idea you can look at the attachment, ‘What’s the Point of a Dramaturg?’ by Glenys Leigh McIntyre.

  • There are no themes or genres suggested; if you can work within the above parameters then you can write what you like.