NFTS Scotland: Developing and Pitching Drama Online

Short course


Delivered in the NFTS Cymru Wales Virtual Classroom, accessed via Zoom, in partnership with NFTS Scotland and NFTS Leeds

This course is for writers, script editors, producers and people with ideas for making television drama or feature films. It will take you through the process of practising and delivering a successful verbal pitch, which is a crucial skill to acquire for anyone wanting to work in the industry today.

Over three days, the course explores how best to develop drama proposals, script outlines or un-commissioned scripts and how to target and pitch these to potential financiers, sales agents and distributors.

It will make you think realistically about your ideas and give you a framework for going forward. If you’ve been struggling on your own, it will give you invaluable feedback, suggestions and ways of packaging your ideas.

Participants will come to the course with an idea for a TV drama series or screenplay at an early stage of development.

DAY 1 Begin discussing your drama with your fellow writers. We will ask: what makes a great TV drama or screenplay? Key breakthrough dramas will be analysed from both the streaming services and UK broadcasters. Emphasis on how character is crucial to every successful idea for drama. Overnight: write two scenes from your pilot or screenplay for discussion the following morning with a view to creating memorable characters as well as a strong narrative.

DAY 2 After sharing and discussing your scenes with your fellow writers and producers, we’ll look at your idea in the context of the industry today. How will it stand out among the competition? What is original in terms of genre and appeal to audiences? You will then rehearse your pitches, with your fellow writers as the first audience. Overnight: write a two-page summary of your series or movie which can be sent out to agents.

DAY 3. You will pitch your project to a leading Head of Development. This will be followed by career advice which will include how to locate the right production company for your project and finding an agent - how to get into the right room.

All discussion and practice of the work will take place in the atmosphere of a creative and supportive online Writer’s Room.

This course is led by NFTS's own Peter Ansorge (Ex-commissioning Editor and Head of Channel 4 Drama) whose award-winning career includes: A Very British Coup, Traffik, GBH, The Politician’s Wife, Tales of the City, Brookside and The Camomile Lawn.

Previous course participants said:

'Hugely insightful comments that developed my pitch - and project - in a positive way.'

'Peter's knowledge and experience was so valuable and he was generous in sharing both.' 'It was invaluable to get feedback from someone who was working at such a high level in the industry and was honest and tactful in his approach, feedback and insight.'

Fees and funding options

Fees for this course are as follows:

Freelance Rate: £525

Corporate Rate: £815

Bursaries, supported by the Scottish Government, are also available for those who are eligible.


A limited number of bursaries are available for all of our short courses. If you wish to apply for a bursary to contribute to the costs of your course, please read the bursary guidelines below carefully to confirm your eligibility. Please do not apply to a course unless you are sure you meet the bursary eligibility criteria, or can pay for the course by other means.

Please apply as far in advance of the course date as possible to give yourself the best chance of securing a supported place, as we may not be able to accommodate all applications. We aim to advise successful applicants no later than 10 working days prior to the course start date. 

Once you have submitted your course application, your bursary application, and supporting documents, should be submitted to

NFTS Scotland Bursary Guidelines (Word doc)

NFTS Scotland Bursary Application Form (pdf)

If you are not eligible for an NFTS Scotland bursary, please read our Alternative Funding Avenues document (pdf) which points you in the direction of a few other places which may be able to help. Please submit your application in plenty of time as timescales for funders differ. 


How to apply

Application deadline: Book Now

To secure your place on the next course, please complete the application form to apply. You will be required to upload your C.V. 
Please also read the Terms and Conditions of booking as payment of a successful application assumes acceptance of these. 

Begin your application