More info about the writers and plays at our first events

For those of you who were unable to make the showcases last week, here’s a little bit of information about the playwrights and their plays. If you would like to contact any of the writers, please email 17percentevents@gmail.com 
Another stab at life by Sue Blundell A play about life after death that turns the myth of Orpheus and Eurydice on its head. ‘Inspiration comes from characters and snatches of dialogue that enter my head; then the perspiration begins when I have to create a story that makes them meaningful’. Sue teaches ancient Greek history, and her plays are mostly based on Classical themes.
Pinching squirrels biscuits by Carolyn Csonka Out of food, drink and baccy. Even the cat can’t take any more. Is this their lucky day? ‘I was waiting in the queue in a post office watching and listening to a couple bickering. In those few moments, all my assumptions about these two and the relationship they had between them were turned upside down.’ Carolyn has had two short plays performed at the Rondo Theatre in Bath and recently graduated with a MA in Scriptwriting from Bath Spa University. She currently lives in Bath.
The Love story of fred and buttercup by Ava Cummings If you fall in love with someone when you’re 15, what chance do you have when you lose him 38 years later? A middle-aged woman with no way forward looks back on the relationship that shaped her life. Ava is 27 and was born in Birmingham. She trained as a journalist on local papers in the Midlands, before moving to London to work on television documentaries. This is the first time she has written something for the stage.
The road to enlightenment – via Maidstone by Sarah Davies The world’s loneliest man finds love amongst the Little Chefs and petrol stations of the M25! ‘I wanted to explore vast, lonely, anonymous places, and the people who are drawn to them; this place became the M25 and the stops along the way. I liked the idea of a character taking a physical as well as emotional journey, and couldn’t resist the potential for humour that comes with this man who is obsessed with motorways!’ Sarah is a writer and drama lecturer, with an MA in playwriting. Published works include short stories, articles and theatre reviews. She has written many plays and a novel.
Do the right thing by Maggie Drury  What is ‘the right thing to do’. Kate is unsure. However, when she thinks the wrong thing, Tom knows exactly what to do … but is it the right thing. ‘I’m a compulsive writer. Something springs to mind, often a couple of lines of dialogue, and I go along with it until a messy puzzle emerges that challenges me to make some sort of sense of it. And that’s the part I enjoy most.’ Maggie started writing for the theatre in 2004. Showcased & workshopped short pieces. Attended courses: long, short and residential. In 2007 ‘Not Knowing Who We Are’ was performed at The Blue Elephant, Camberwell.
Magic thing by Kerry Hood Shoey the ferryman rows his ex-wife across the river. Twenty years ago today, their son went missing… ‘I’m inspired to write by seeking to understand a small part of the human world. I write bleakly funny stories about isolated individuals on the edge of what we call ‘normal’ and the consequences of not/miscommunicating. I explore theatrical language that pulls my audience into my skew-whiff head.’ Kerry has written nine plays including Meeting Myself Coming Back (Soho Theatre), Caution! Trousers (Stephen Joseph), Feng Shui at Hair By Christine (Bristol Old Vic), How to Live Without Love (Ustinov, Bath) and Talking For England (Ustinov). My Balloon Beats Your Astronaut opens at Tristan Bates Theatre in April. She’s also an award-winning short fiction writer.
The king was in his counting house by Gill Kirk A fly-on-the-wall view of coffee breaks at the Treasury one Saturday in October ’08, during discussions on whether or not to close down the UK’s cash point system. ‘I knew there’d been – albeit short – conversations at the Treasury about the consequences of closing down Britain’s ATM system, and I couldn’t stop wondering how the various personalities that must have been around – and outside – that table must have dealt both with the issue and with one another. They had a duty to “think the unthinkable”, but how far would they go? What alternatives might they have considered?’ Gill is a Bath-based playwright (and political consultant), whose recent projects include Theatre:24 and Writers’ Sprint at Bristol Old Vic, and a script-in-hand of a dark family comedy, ‘Water’s Not So Thick’ (Tobacco Factory, Script Space).
Lydia Bennett returns by Joanna Alexandra Norwood Lydia Bennet, the wayward sister in “Pride and Prejudice” seizes Jane Austen’s pen and writes herself a redemption- -much to the consternation of Elizbeth and Mr. Darcy. ‘I write in part to make sense of my life, and also to connect with audiences and other theatre makers. The prospect of inspiring collaboration is a huge motivator for me.’ Lawyer by day and playwright by night, Joanna wrote ‘Lydia Bennet Returns’ as a prequel to her first full length play, ‘Lizzy, Darcy and Jane’, published by Samuel French Ltd.
The girl who collected stories by Joanna Pinto “Once upon a time there was a girl who collected stories. She travelled far and wide to collect her stories. She slept under bridges, up trees, in boarding houses and bawdy houses. She kept with her at all times the Book Girl on whom the stories were all written in a language that only she could understand.” ‘I’m inspired by stories that people tell me – be it family history, stories recounted in the pub, overheard conversations or half-remembered fairy tales, myths and legends. I’m interested in how fractured narratives and stories-within-stories can show what it’s like to be a human with a past, a present and a future all affecting our moment-to-moment choices in living.’ Joanna studied Drama at Bristol University, and continued her training as a writer with the Royal Court Theatre, Soho Theatre and National Theatre Studio. Her full-length plays “Gardening Leave”, “The High Cost of Living” and “Pebbles on the Beach” have been performed in New York, London and Edinburgh. ‘This piece was written as part of Ugly Sisters Productions’ “The Story Project” in 2009. I was asked to write a short play based on the dictionary definition of “story”, and this play grew from my love of fairy tales, tattoos, and sad stories of things coming to an end.’
Khao San Road by Marianne Powell Jim is a legend on Khao San Road. The backpackers’ backpacker. The caner of caners. But girlfriend Daisy wants more from Bangkok than cheap whiskey and lost weekends. Lindsay, fresh off the plane wants to write her creative masterpiece. ‘In general, I try to start with some interesting characters and see what they end up doing’. Marianne is a writer and editor in the not-for-profit sector. She’s relatively new to writing scripts, but has had one short piece performed at the Leicester Square Theatre as part of a comedy showcase.
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About 17Percent

A campaign to get more plays by women playwrights onto UK stages.
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