Swamp Motel launches new paid commission programme, Room 21

Swamp Motel are looking to support creative talent in the live theatre and entertainment industries through a new paid commission programme, Room 21. 

Swamp Motel launches new paid commission programme, Room 21

Off the back of a very difficult year for live theatre, Swamp Motel are looking to support creative talent in the live theatre and entertainment industries through a new paid commission programme, Room 21. Swamp Motel are opening their doors and asking for submissions - be that an original script or creative idea to adapt and produce into an online entertainment experience.  



Room 21 is a virtual room in ‘Swamp Motel’ that the company are offering to a writer to then develop their original script/idea into a multi-platform narrative that can be told through an online, audience-led experience. Applicants could be amateur, professional or completely undiscovered writers. They could be university students, school leavers or 40 years into their career. Swamp Motel are welcoming creative applications from those who have not ventured into digital formats before.

The motivation behind Room 21 and welcoming new creatives into the fold at Swamp Motel is all about providing an opportunity for people who have been affected by the government’s closure of the live theatre and entertainment experiences because of Covid-19.

Over 2020-21 Swamp Motel has diversified its creative offering. The Swamp Motel Trilogy began with ‘Plymouth Point’, in the autumn followed ‘The Mermaids’ Tongue’ and in March 2021 the final part in the trilogy ‘The Kindling Hour’. The success of the trilogy has enabled growth from 4 - 40 staff in the team, and extended capability to work with brands on tailor-made experiences. 

Taking theatrical storytelling to new audiences, the Swamp Motel Trilogy has been experienced by over 40,000 people. The Telegraph’s Dominic Cavendish commented how the experiences ‘feel very now.’ Firmly established as part of their work moving forward, when in-person performances resume, this sub-genre will continue to bring gamers towards theatre and vice-versa. 

Need to know

The commissioning programme will provide:
  • A writer’s fee of £2,000 (a non-returnable advance against royalties)
  • A month working in collaboration with Swamp Motel Creative Directors (Working virtually of course)
  • An additional writers fee of £2,000 should the script move into production (a non-returnable advance against royalties) 
  • A ticket royalty of 10% on net box office profits
  • Administrative, producing, production and marketing support from the Swamp Motel team

Eligibility criteria:
  • You must be a UK resident.
  • You must be 18 years of age or over.
  • We cannot accept scripts or ideas that have been commissioned for another organisation.
  • Ideas must belong to the applicants
  • We’re open to applications submitted from more than one person.

Application Guidelines:
  • A cover sheet, detailing contact information, name, email, phone number, address, website (if you have one) and 150 words on your reasons for applying
  • An A4 one- page treatment OR an online link to one 3-minute video-based treatment delivered by yourself. Treatment should include the following:
    1. Outline the narrative premise
    2. Highlight the key characters
    3. Detail any other creative features of note that help to communicate your creative vision.
    4. Why this piece is perfect for an online immersive format.
  • Your CV (or combined CV if more than one person) 

Decision-making process:
  • There will be a collaborative shortlisting and decision-making process led by Swamp Motel’s Creative, Production and Marketing teams. Please note we will be unable to give feedback to unsuccessful applicants who are not shortlisted.
  • Shortlisted applicants will be contacted and invited to a 60-minute discussion with key decision-makers from Swamp Motel via video conference. Further detail regarding the format and attendance of this discussion will be shared in advance with all shortlisted applicants.
  • The final decision will be at the discretion of the Directors at Swamp Motel, and may or may not require an additional meeting post the shortlist interviews.

Deadline for applications: 14th June 2021
Successful awardee notified: By 30th June 2021
Writers residency: July 2021

For more information about Room 21 and how to enter, visit swampmotel.co.uk.

Good luck everyone!

Header Image Credit: Swamp Motel


Saskia Calliste

Saskia Calliste Voice Team

Saskia is the Deputy Editor of Voice and has worked on campaigns such as International Women’s Day, Black History Month, and Anti-Bullying Week. Outside of Voice, Saskia is a published author (Hairvolution) and has guest featured in various other publications (The Women Writers’ Handbook/ Cosmopolitan/ The Highlight). She has a BA in Creative Writing and Journalism and an MA in Publishing. She is a mentor for Women of the World Global, has guest lectured at the University of Roehampton and has led seminars/panel talks on Race, Equality and Diversity. She was a 2022 Guest Judge for Dave (TV Channel) in search of the 'Joke of the Fringe'. She is 27-years-old, based in London, and loves to cook and explore new places in her spare time.


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