Pens, Project Management and Portsmouth Plugged In

Charlotte Comley reports on her recent experiences as the Project Manager for Portsmouth Plugged In, a collaboration between writers and filmmakers.

The theme of this year’s Portsmouth Festivities was Electricity, and for ten days the city celebrated arts, culture and heritage on this theme through over 100 events delivered in 32 venues across the city.

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The Portsmouth Plugged In Writers

But for me, this year was an extra-special event because my idea was in the programme, Portsmouth Plugged In, a collaboration between writers and filmmakers.

It was the first time I have run a creative project of this size. Eleven local writers used film footage as a writing prompt and then produced a series of monologues which were performed and filmed. We’ve uploaded some of these onto YouTube and you can view the whole playlist here, or dip your toe in the water by checking out a couple of the videos at the bottom of the page.

So what did I learn from working on a project of this size? Well, here’s just a few things:

  • Procrastination does not work

After assimilating the relevant information, decisions need to be made. Wrong decisions can be salvaged, if discovered early; but right decisions cannot be postponed.

  • When things go wrong, know who you can turn to for help
  • The success of a project is largely dependent on the skills and strengths of the people involved

Therefore, a project needs to have a dedicated, talented set of individuals working towards a common goal. I was extremely lucky to have a fabulous team around me.

  • Some people are difficult…

…but most are fabulous, don’t sit in difficult people’s shadow.

  • Celebrate!

Things may not have turned out the way I imagined when I put the concept together, but I was extremely proud of the finished project.

But don’t take my word for it, check out Rick Haynes with Elysium Eight and Jules Garvey Welch with two very different pieces.

Elysium Eight also worked with Christine Lawrence, while filmmaker John Williams worked with writers Lynne Stone, David Dunford and Linda Rushby.

And if you enjoyed this, keep an eye out for us next year, we might just be back!

A version of this article originally appeared on Charlotte Comley’s website.

Image of the Portsmouth Plugged In writers courtesy of Charlotte Comley.