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]

View submissions

Upload

Submissions are currently closed

Submissions

The Incredible Electric Light
By Beth Jellicoe

The day the electric streetlamps came to our town there was a grand switching-on, with the mayor and corporation showing up to flick the switch and illuminate all the roads in the town… Well, not…

Time to Fly
By Ella Carmichael

Anything worthwhile entails sacrifice. That’s the message Bethany’s parents instilled in her from the beginning. Time and again, they reiterated the need to forgo. Forgo leisure, forgo boyfriends.…

All That Glisters
By Hugh Oxlade

I have done it. I have changed lead into gold. Well, not me exactly. I masterminded and supervised the project, but much of the work was carried out by other members of my team. The credit should go to…

Show and Tell
By Andy Wright

Autumnal sun streamed through the blinds, creating patterns of light and dark. At the front, Michael held a supermarket carrier bag, handles scrunched in his fist. The other children, some fascinated…

Making a Change
By Rachel Henson

From the main road, Sarah could hear the children squabbling at break time. Their volume increased as she approached the school. In the playground, she noticed one child pushing another. She felt her…

The power and the glory
By Julie Ryan

It had started as a joke. They had decided that they should elect a leader to take care of their interests and his allies had put his name forward scarcely believing that it would be accepted. Over the…

RUNNER
By BOBBIE PRIME

She pounded along the pavement through the darkness and pouring rain, splashing through puddles, clinking on pebbles.“Woman beats car!” she thought to herself with satisfaction, speeding past…

Inside Out
By Pete Harrison

My body stands in a room surrounded by friends and relatives. Here to celebrate my thirtieth birthday. All having fun, singing happy birthday, pulling party poppers and batting balloons around with the…

Garden Wall
By Michaela Botterill

Life is death. Life is love. He was my life and I was his. He sacrificed himself for me, and each day I did the same. Stuck behind these garden walls life was nothing more but me and him. But, what was…

The Great Divide
By Catherine Skellern

The bleeding stopped when she stayed still. Tilting her head back, the sun shone hot on her face, crusting the blood around her nose. She smiled in its warmth. ‘Lady,’ shouted a voice from…

Leading Lady
By Charise de Becker

Luci-E supposed Mr. Stein had kept his promise to show her the world; she still wasn’t sure seeing the world consisted of this black-listed theatre in Paris’ underground circuit, but she hoped…

Mr Cat
By Alex Dixon

Miriam: It was dark when Mummy woke me up. "Get up Miriam, we need to go!" "What's wrong?" I asked. "We need to leave now." I stood up. Mummy was wrapping Aaron in a…

Hope hides screaming
By Fay Deller

Hope hides screaming by Fay Deller Jayne looked at the post on Facebook. Two beautiful faces beaming with love and happiness gazed back at her; she felt tears sting her eyes although she was smiling.…

Debris
By Catherine Baird

There was no sign of a vessel. No blip, no lights. She scanned the sounder screen – nada. The water was dark, metallic against a washed out sky. Nothing could survive these conditions. She radioed…

A Plate Holds More Emotions Than The Rich Ever Could
By Cait Zipfell

I woke up in a virtually silent room with a pounding heart and sweat-drenched clothing. Panting as I clutched my chest, I collapsed back into bed as if I'd just ran a marathon. The sharp pain was…

Changing The World
By Annie Percik

“I’m going to change the world!” Timmy announced. “That’s nice, dear,” his mother, Elaine, said, barely looking up. “Could you tidy your room first, please?”…

Frexit (Frank's Exit)
By Sinead Cox

Shadows from yesteryear catch up to these shadows we knit today infiltrating our hidden souls. I say ‘hidden’ for we conceal them within the depths of a dark abyss. We invite chaos, a vicious…

A change in location
By Taylor Brown

“The thing about space travel is that it’s never a big deal until days before the next big launch. At least, that was the case in my experience. Nobody cared that I would be embarking on the…

The Mugging
By Kevin Crowe

THE MUGGING. I awoke from a nightmare. When the pain hit me, I knew it hadn't been a bad dream. I tried to move. I screamed in agony. “You're probably better staying where you are for the…

For More Sense
By Christina Shin

Two shops down from the Corner of Mayfield Street stands a little hotdog cart with four bold, black words strewn across the sign at the top: JUST FOR MORE SENSE. From the nonsensical words, you assume…