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Online Play Writing Class

Introduction to Playwriting

ALL THE WORLD’S A STAGE:  An Introduction to Playwriting by Christina Hamlett

START DATE:  Starts the First Tuesday of Every Month

DURATION:  6 weeks

LOCATION:  Email only

FEEDBACK:  Instructor feedback

COURSE DESCRIPTION:  Since the time of the Ancient Greeks, the live theater experience has satisfied an audience's need for entertainment that is immediate, intimate and accessible to all ages and levels of society. Whether performed in an outdoor courtyard, on a vintage stage, in a school auditorium, or above the din of an urban coffeehouse, a play is an ever-evolving and timeless art form that derives its energy from both sides of the footlights. Unlike a novel or a film which is financed and produced only once, a theater script undergoes a new transformation with each change of cast and each change of venue. Even the passage of time itself impacts how a theatrical story will resonate with successive generations, giving new definition and perspective to old ideas or providing a yardstick of how far we've come from social mores that were once held as truth.

In this class, you'll be learning what makes a play successful...and how to write one yourself! Each module consists of a lecture and writing assignment, as well as interviews, websites and anecdotes. Ideally, it should only take one week to complete each exercise. The final assignment will be the writing and submission of an original 15-minute one-act play, which will be professionally critiqued for its adherence to all of the principles addressed in class.

Christina Hamlett is a treasure! Her meticulously constructed curriculum reflects her vast experience and knowledge of all facets of the theatre world. She teaches the grammar of playwriting and guides us step by step by presenting a toolbox to use in the process of constructing a play. Each assignment builds upon the previous one and incorporates templates and examples plus offering resources to enrich the learning process. The weekly assignments, including going to a play after having learned essential components of playwriting, are an opportunity for experiential learning. By offering individual instruction, Christina is helping me to harness my passion and to create a work that will shine a light on a universal problem by sharing my personal story. Her constructive criticism is coupled with additional advice and resources. She continuously goes the extra mile. How fortunate I am to embark on a playwriting journey with such a gifted educator. ~ Susan Resnik

Christina is not only formidably talented and experienced, her passion for the written word is non pareil which makes working with her an experience that a writer lucky enough to do so will keep with them for a very long time to come. Christina is the Rolls Royce of script consultants. ~ Julie Gray, Founder, The Script Department and author of The Rouge Wave

Christina's the best. Shortly after the first workshop production of my musical, "MadAvenue," I asked her to help fix some things I thought needed changing. Her advice and suggestions were amazing. What a difference she made! Thanks, thanks, thanks to a real pro." ~ Walt Bagot

As an artist, I work with creative high school students as a mentor. Encouraging these fine young people to "keep at it" is a real challenge. Keeping their passion alive is the goal of the mentoring teams that I field. Christina Hamlett has accomplished something quite rare as an author/teacher in her "Screenwriting for Teens." First, she breaks her message down into (well organized) bite-sized pieces for easy mental digestion. Secondly, with the assistance of young Nick Morgan, she speaks directly to her audience in a most compelling way. Thirdly, she demystifies this important lesson about story telling. And, lastly, this book resonates with any person interested in learning how to be a more effective storyteller . . . the author's genuine warmth and intelligence imbue each and every page. ~ Dan Koffman, Artist-educator

Christina Hamlett is one of our most valuable writers. She takes care to attune herself to each client’s individual vision, and dedicates herself to realizing the potential of every project. She also has a keen eye for the needs of the market, and never hesitates to provide the client with honest and invaluable advice. ~ Sara King, Project Manager, Penn Group, LLC

Working with Christina Hamlett has been a wonderful experience. Her professionalism, attention to detail, and positive attitude has made it so easy to work with her. I appreciate her willingness to share her knowledge and I admire her passion and infectious enthusiasm.  ~ Maggie Worrix King


Week 1:  How to tell if your story is right for the stage.

Week 2:  How to write roles that actors will want to play.

Week 3:  The actor’s prescription for curing doofy dialogue.

Week 4:  Everything you need to know about sets, furniture and props.

Week 5:  How to write plays for young people.

Week 6:  How to get your play produced.

As part of the homework, students will also be asked to attend one play production during the course and write a short review demonstrating what they learned from it. This can be turned in at any time during the six weeks. Unlike a traditional classroom or an Internet chat room that requires group attendance at the same time and day every week, this course provides one-on-one instruction via email. In addition, the Adobe Acrobat workbook format is one that you can either print out a lesson at a time or simply save on your hard drive.

Materials needed: All materials are supplied by the instructor.


Christina Hamlett

ABOUT THE INSTRUCTOR:  Former actress and theatre director Christina Hamlett is an award-winning author whose credits to date include 47 books, 266 stage plays and squillions of articles, blogs, and interviews. She is also a script consultant for stage and screen, a gourmet cook and a professional ghostwriter. Her cozy mystery series is set against the backdrop of the UK and currently includes A LITTLE LARCENY IN LYNMOUTH, A LITTLE SCANDAL IN ST. ANDREWS, A LITTLE DRAMA IN DUNSTER, and A LITTLE POISON IN PAISLEY.

COST:  $175, which includes one-on-one support and critiques through email.

BUY NOW:  ALL THE WORLD’S A STAGE: AN INTRODUCTION TO PLAYWRITING, by Christina Hamlett (6 weeks, starting the first Tuesday of the month.) Limit: 10 students.

Notes:  Upon successful completion of payment, your name, email address, and contact info will be submitted to your instructor. She will contact you via email so you can get started.

Questions? Email Marcia & Angela at:

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