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

The mountain of rags
By Anoushka Das

It grows almost everyday. Rising above the concrete slabs of the ghettos and backed by the barbed wire, its growth is a testament to the life in those lifeless streets. The streets that seem to gleam…

Red Rain
By Joshua Matthews

Can the sky bleed? I always thought that when the rain starts, The clouds are crying. That's why people shy away from the rain I think. To block out their tears and sorrow. But what if the clouds…

Death Has A Shadow
By Saffron March

A piece of rubble crumbling from a ruined house, the wind blowing against the panes of blackened windows. Each and every small sound was intensified by the deceiving calm. The building's windows looked…

Childe Roland Returns
By Deon Lee

On an old, haggard beast treading through plains of vast heather, Childe Roland awoke from yet another half-slept dream and upon opening his eyes had found them gazing towards a familiar sight coming…

Recalculating
By Chris Clement-Green

I can feel my blood pumping, banging against my temples. Continue fifteen miles. The sat-nav makes no acknowledgement of my current state. In one mile keep right on to M1. Ignoring instruction I turn…

A Travelling Child
By Sarah-Anne Dexter

She sits in the classroom, and she hears them clearly, though the teacher is trying to use one of their essays as an example for how it ought to be done. As much as she'd love to listen to her teacher,…

Bells, Clocks and Zizzing.
By Debbie Jarvie

Anne walked in once again at 7.30am and punched her card. She could already hear the ziz of the machines as she hung her coat on the peg. She walked around to her own machine passing Sheila on the way…

Twenty Pounds Lost and Found
By Lydia Lighten

I alighted from the train and negotiated the crowds through Piccadilly station on my way to the University of Manchester. I caught sight, out of the corner of my eye, a folded £20 note falling to…

The Magic of Restoration
By mia connor

The pier is empty. All life and magic has been sucked completely out. I remember, lights from the ferris wheels, the ‘oo’s or ‘aah’s at the mesmerising magicians that brought floods…

Drop-out
By Gattara

Serena huddled into her scarf - the scarf that still smelled like her mother after having been away from her for over a month. The crisp October air chilled her not unpleasantly, but a little too much…

Calais
By Sophie Corben

I didn't think it could be our home, nobody did, but we all tried so heard to pretend. We ignored everyone and told each other they were just going through a rough patch and that Calais could be fun.…

Born Again
By Ian Boyd

He awoke from a slumber too long. When he had fallen asleep he could not recall but it had been an age ago. His eyes were closed but all his other senses told him all around was black:total and complete…

Jump
By Christopher Moore

‘Look out!’ cried the watchful bird, flitting to and fro. ‘You are all in peril, and must jump immediately!’ The other birds glanced up, momentarily roused from their slumber,…

Dream- Fields
By Brittany Armstrong

My dad always told me that only I could change my life, the only thing standing in my way was me. This was true for most of my life decisions but mother nature had other ideas. I’ve never had much…

Thomas Jefferson's Legacy
By Christopher Denton

Sally waggled a finger at the father of her six children. 'Thirty three years ago, you made me a promise.' Still dressed in his night gown, Thomas Jefferson blinked at the sunlight streaming into…

Finding Dada.
By Hazel Stevens

The night echoed eerie sounds, Annie pulled her cloak closer, if only she could see through the dark. Why had Mama sent her out into the street at this time of night? Why couldn't Alfred go, he was…

WHEN THE BOUGH BROKE
By Susan Jones

‘I spotted your boat through my binoculars, whilst standing on the deck of a Greek cruise ship. Your flimsy vessel was laden with people: unmistakably refugees fleeing from their homeland, Syria,…

The Incy Wincy Spider
By Katie Devine

There once was a little spider who believed that they could be anything, achieve anything, and do anything they wanted to do. And why? Because she lived in a country where she was told anything is possible,…

CONVERSATION WITH A WIDOW
By Geoffrey Heptonstall

I once thought I heard – when a reverend gentleman spoke – the sound of a stumbling man. ‘On the one hand…’ he began. It was a long explanation I did not wish to hear. He…

The Chair
By Colin Sinclair

She sits, the chair is all encompassing, standing, rooted, on the stained wooden floor, carved legs glued by the build-up of dust and sweat. Accentuating the shadows of the room and mind. The frayed upholstery,…