Radio Theater Project Submissions

The Radio Theatre Project accepts submissions of original scripts where the story depends on dialogue instead of visuals.

The beauty of radio theater is that it’s voices, and it’s storytelling.

Radio plays can be startlingly intimate – the thoughts inside somebody’s head. Or as wide-ranging as the universe, a story way too big for a stage. It’s easy and inexpensive to go to Mars on the radio, or converse with a dragon or your dog – this is theatre your audience builds with you, and each person designs the set and casts the characters in their imagination.

That said, we tend toward new work and only rarely do old-timey scripts. We welcome writers who have radio in mind, and writers willing to reshape scripts that have had a life onstage or screen.

If you’re adapting a work from another medium, remember that audio is a different animal. What got you screams and cheers onstage may need to be rethought if it’s delivered without visuals.

Selected plays are performed for a standing-room only crowd in downtown St. Pete, with professional actors on book and a sound effects artist. Recordings are distributed via podcast and writers receive a stipend of $50 when the script is performed.

Short plays are very welcome. Full-length plays will need to be condensed to one hour with an intermission.
Stage plays can be submitted as-is for consideration, though if selected some adaptation may be necessary.
This is an ongoing opportunity.

SUBMISSION GUIDELINES FOR RTP SCRIPTS

  • Plays should have a running time of 50 minutes or less. Brevity is the soul of.
  • Plays longer than 30 minutes will need to be able to be split in two parts with an intermission.
  • Plays that originated as stage, film or prose are fine, but we produce radio theater – works originating in other forms will need to be adapted for radio.
  • The Radio Theatre Project reserves the right to make any edits necessary for length, clarity or FCC regulations. We’ll suggest those to you, if your script is being considered for production.
  • Florida writers and plays with Florida settings and subject matter are always welcome.
  • Send plays for consideration to Jim Wicker, Literary Manager, at jimwicker.actor@gmail.com.

REQUIREMENTS

  • Please include a cover sheet with title, name of author and contact information.
  • On the second page, please include a plot summary and brief bio of the author.
  • Please submit scripts in 12-point type with page numbers in the upper right-hand corner.
  • Think about sound and sound effects.
  • The scripts will be broadcast, so FCC language restrictions apply—no seven deadly words, obscenity, overt sex or graphic bodily functions.
  • Before your script is produced, you will need to put it into radio play format – see guidelines here.

TIPS

  • Any action must be made clear by dialogue and sound effects.
  • Characters should be identified frequently by name, and there can’t be too many characters in the same scene. If characters aren’t part of the conversation, they disappear.
  • Be judicious in your use of narration and monologue, or avoid them altogether. Dialogue is more engaging.

RESOURCES TO EXPLORE

Tips from the BBC, including sample scripts. They do know all about it.

An excellent article on Writing for Audio Drama by author Robyn Paterson. Many thanks to Radio Theatre Project fan Alexander Balanda for sharing this terrific resource.

Wonderfully detailed guidelines from Independent Radio Drama Productions in the UK.

An introduction to writing NPR-style radio. All the rules about writing and the way listeners listen, apply.

If you have questions, please contact Jim Wicker, RTP Literary Manager at jimwicker.actor@gmail.com.