Tell A Tale in 500 Words

Tell A Tale in 500 Words

Tell A Tale in 500 Words

“A day wasted on others is not wasted on one’s self” Charles Dickens

Charles Dickens is celebrated as one of Britain’s greatest writers. With novels such as Oliver Twist, Bleak House, Great Expectations and A Tale of Two Cities he created some of the most amusing and enduring characters in fiction.

Dickens lived in the Victorian era, a time of change and moral responsibility where social problems such as poverty, rioting and poor working and living conditions were widespread. During his life, Dickens was an advocate for children’s rights and free public education and through his novels attempted to address the social inequalities he observed.

In A Tale of Two Cities, he explored his concerns that the troubles people were facing in England would lead to a revolution similar to that which had happened in France in the 1790s and drew attention to the inevitability of violence caused by the irresponsibility of people in power.

 

This project needs you!

In celebration of Dickens and to mark the Autumn 2016 theatre tour of Mike Poulton’s adaptation of A Tale of Two Cities, we want you to write a 500-word tale with the theme making change happen. Dickens wrote many short stories and believed doing so helped people release private emotions and fantasies that couldn’t be placed in longer narratives.

 

Get writing! 

Dickens created worlds and characters to bring wider attention to the issues he felt needed to be changed and to give a voice to the people of his time.


We want you to tell a tale with the theme making change happen. How you do it is up to you! Your tale doesn’t have to be set in Victorian England, or even England at all! It doesn’t have to be about people or politics. It could be about a lonely robot or a baby frog. Be as imaginative as you can!

 

All we ask is that you look at the themes from A Tale of Two Cities as your inspiration and think about what you would like to change and how.

Themes: inequality, revolution, sacrifice, violence, shadows and darkness, imprisonment.

 

Prizes

A Tale of Two Cities premieres on 12th September at Royal & Derngate, Northampton. It then tours to cities and town across the UK until 26 November 2016.

  • At each city or town, Theatre Cloud and the Tell A Tale judges will select two tales to send to the cast of A Tale of Two Cities. An actor will then choose their favourite tale and perform a filmed reading at the theatre. Each reading will be available to watch online and makes it onto the shortlist.
  • In the final week of the tour, the Tell A Tale judges will review the shortlisted tales and decide which one comes top and receives a grand prize of £300. Judges will also choose a runner-up who will win £150. A third prize will be awarded to the tale that’s most popular with audiences online.
  • Everybody that participates in the project will receive an exclusive £10 ticket offer  (valid on 2 tickets) to see A Tale of Two Cities on stage at their local theatre.

Get Involved

#TellATale

Write a 500-word short story with the theme of 'making change happen'.

Register to TheatreCloud.com and add your submission

 

Deadline: 6pm, 19 November 2016

Rules

1. Entry to this project is free and open to persons of all ages who reside in the UK.

2. Your story must be your own original work and must be unpublished at the time of entry. We accept no responsibility should entrants ignore these Terms & Conditions. Short stories should be fictional and must be no longer than 500 words in length.

3. Submit your story by registering to theatecloud and uploading your work via the online form. Unfortunately, we are unable to accept submissions by other methods. All submissions will be published here on the project page.

4. Submissions will be judged on originality, characterisation and enjoyment, in addition to the relevance to the theme and a consideration of Charles Dickens’ beliefs.

5. Entrants retain all rights to their entries but by submitting a story to the project, grant and acknowledge our right to publish the story as required in promoting the project and in the fulfillment of prizes.

6. Due to the large number of entrants, we are unable to respond individually to all submissions

7. Entry opens on Monday 8 August 2016 and closes on Saturday 19 Nov 2016 at 6PM. Submissions received after this deadline will not be accepted.

 

For more information or help, please email [email protected]

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Submissions

Things Will Be Different Now
By Ben Howels

THINGS WILL BE DIFFERENT NOW He’s resting in his little pine bed; face calm, eyes shut, and mind elsewhere. Both of you are dressed for church. You’ll have to leave soon, but you don’t…

Mr. Hardcastle’s Accidental Revolution
By Scott Aaron Tait

Whistling, with the aggravated grievance of a steam train, the kettle billowed a thin jet of steamy vapour. Lifting the kettle off the hob the room was once again filled with the gentle melody of a piano…

Lucky
By Kate Monaghan

Soni Kaur was one of those lucky girls, of course. You’d have to be an idiot not to realise – she displayed all the classic tell-tale signs of prosperity and felicity, from having a sudden…

Just Staying
By Liz Rich

*Beep* “Dad! Me again, Carly, y’know, your daughter. Are you coming? Nigel said he hadn’t heard from you, I texted you his number, well, social services number but they’ll put…

Reclaiming Words
By Vicky Ward

“Getting angry,” Her sister Marigold says, “Is a waste of time.” She folds her small white hands on her lap, and chews at the corner of her lip with her small white teeth. The…

Parenthood And (Un)conditional Love
By Ameera Mian

I was very young when my mum brought us to England. I don’t remember much but I have since been told that I was eager to be reunited with my family. My mum had looked after us like a hero over the…

Reformation
By Lily McNally

Nestled within cold pines, we were hidden; thick branches blocking a sun we had long forgotten. These festive trees recall every Christmas lived and missed. Of half-remembered domestic scenes, children…

Leisel
By Nicholas Bulmer

S: Are you sure? You don't have to do this. M: I do. Yes. S: You have the right to regular contact with all four of your children. The court will recognise this. M: It's hurting them. S: What…

The Undesirables
By Cecily Fasham

‘Change is a difficult thing.’ Says the Politician. His smooth words and easy, empty smile conceal a nervousness only betrayed by the way he is fiddling with his wedding ring, twisting it…

Transition from the AM
By Millie Dunne

I was always one to hide my emotions until they'd spiral out of control; I'd wait until my feelings were physically holding down my chest and stopping me from breathing to physically care. That…

LIFE-CHANGE.
By Christine Law

LIFE- CHANGE. After doing the family shopping in Kingston on Thames Savannah would buy herself a coffee and sit by the river. She had become friendly with Leonardo a Polish waiter who was ten years her…

A Game of Two Halves
By Michael North

A Game of Two Halves I told Ed he didn’t have to come and watch me play for Yeadon Town because he can’t stand football. But the real reason was that I’m not ‘out’ to the…

The Oblong
By Carolyn Ward

I woke up that last day feeling nervous. I glanced at my school bag and sighed. Why was I doing this? I’d met Rudi Gonzalez in the street – given him my spare change, actually. He had lifted…

The Shoemaker
By Ian Henery

The Shoemaker I stepped back and admired my work. The pungent smell of real leather was so familiar it was just a nagging notification at the back of my dull mind. The fresh shoes begged me to shine them;…

Plus ca change
By John Nuttall

John Sacks was a surgeon in New York, doing cosmetic work for rich patients. This paid well, but he got no job satisfaction. One day his daughter, Jane, brought home a Syrian student, Feizal, on a visit…

What are apples?
By Pauline B

“I know they’re fruits, they have seeds, stalks and leaves; but what are apples?” “Apples are red and green. You get occasional yellow, but they’re meant to be red and green.”…

Imprisonment
By Scarlett Belladonna

It’s been so long inside this tiny space. It’s been so long that I forget the taste of my favorite food, so long that I forget the feel of a comforting hand, so long that I begin to think…

The Infant and The Cave
By Edward McLaren

The Infant and the Cave Within the fractured hemisphere of the cave, a child lived and played betwixt the neap and the tethered structures he had set about making the day before. Tires and glasses, shattered…

A Peaceful Protest
By Connor Wray

“Before closing my eyes and moving towards the vision of the Buddha, I respectfully plead to President Ngo-Dinh-Diem to take a mind of compassion towards the people of the nation and implement religious…

Old Age
By Jacqui Robinson

‘I’m cold, lonely, bored and I miss you so much my love’. If Jim held the framed photograph very close to his face he could just about see a picture of his beloved wife. He rose, slowly…