We thought it would be interesting to give you an insight into how 4amcab gets made, so this is the first part of a three part blog post doing just that. Rachel shares her writing process.
Part 1: Writing
I jot down ideas as they come to me, to be written up later. When I get stuck, I put it away for a bit, and come back to it. If that fails, the method described by John Cleese here is very useful for getting a creative solution to a seemingly impossible problem. When writing sketches for radio (or, podcast), this excellent blog post by Dan Tetsell is pretty much the definitive guide in terms of formatting etiquette.
This book by Sally Holloway can show you how to get comedy out of nothing by brute force, effectively.
So Lee and I write up as many sketches as we can think of, put them in a drawer for a week, go to work, put the kids to bed, look again at the drawer, wince, sleep, get up, look at th- you get the picture. Then, finally, we make a really strong cup of #tea, open the drawer, read everything we’ve written, and hone it down to make it ‘better.’
Lee is in charge of the final script. He decides on the final order, and might include sketches that have been submitted to the show by other writers. Then we read it half a dozen times, make tweaks and usually decide that everything needs completely re-writing.
Luckily, we have a solid deadline in the form of the recording date, so there is absolutely no choice but to get it finished by, in series 2 episode 2’s case, 7pm tonight.