The Bourne Legacy: sharing top tips for industry success


Media School alumni who have gone on to industry success came back to Bournemouth University to give advice and inspiration to current students.

Top directors, writers, radio producers and business owners were among those who returned to talk to third year Media School students as part of the Bourne Legacy event.

The speakers for the day-long event, which is now in its third year, included Richard Senior.

Since graduating from the BA (Hons) Television Production course in 2002, Richard has gone on to become the youngest ever Director of Doctor Who, Lead Director for children’s drama M.I. High and an award-winning promo producer, creating ad campaigns for BBC dramas.

He said that his advice to the current students was to: “Work hard, build good relationships and don’t be afraid of taking risks.”

He added: “I’m here because I wouldn’t have got where I am without Bournemouth University.

“I think some of the most useful sessions when I was here were when industry people came back to tell us about their experience. I wanted to be part of that and I hope that the advice I give is equally useful.”

Bob Fletcher, who graduated from BA (Hons) Scriptwriting in 2007, was also speaking at the event.

Bob is now working as an associate TV Producer, coming up with new comedy formats, as well as a comedy writer – creating sketches for the likes of Miranda Hart, Jack Whitehall and Harry Enfield.

“Bournemouth University has a really good reputation in the TV industry,” he said.

“If you say you went to Bournemouth, people’s ears prick up.

“People who leave here have every advantage, you just need to make sure you sell yourself and make yourself employable.”

His advice included making yourself stand out by creating and sending short films of your work, rather than just scripts, and not being afraid to hound people.

“You just have to make sure everyone knows who you are,” he said.

“Be really enthusiastic and have ideas. You have got to get past feeling bad about being a nuisance.”

He added he wished he made more of the extra-curricular activities and equipment available to him while at BU.

“I wish when I was at university, I’d made more effort to do things outside the course and collaborated with students in other disciplines.

“I wish I could come back and make some more films and sketches and use all the equipment you have here for free.”

Other speakers at the event included MA Radio Production graduate Mog McIntyre, who is now working on Chris Evans’ BBC Radio 2 programme, and Hollywood horror writer and BA Scriptwriting alumni Richard Hobley.

As well as talks, there was a question and answer panel sessions and the chance to network with the alumni.

Gavin Williams set up his own company, Fishrod, after completing the Interactive Media Production (now Digital Media Design) degree in 2010. The company, which develops web applications and interactive technology, now has clients including BskyB and WWE Wrestling.

Gavin said that he hoped his talk at the Bourne Legacy event would inspire current students.

“I hope it gives them inspiration and confidence to go out and do their own thing. They have the skills to do it,” he said.

“The most important thing is to seize opportunities. You do really tiny things and never know what it is going to snowball into.”

New Media Writing Prize shortlist revealed


An interactive murder mystery on a spaceship, a project about gang warfare in El Salvador and a sitcom based around the Siri voice application are among the shortlisted nominees for the New Media Writing Prize.

The international competition, run by Bournemouth University’s Media School, showcases innovative story-telling designed to be accessed through new media devices.

Entries could be anything from a short poem to a film or computer animation with audience interaction.

The winners will be announced at an awards ceremony at Bournemouth University on the evening of Wednesday 22 January.

The New Media Writing Prize 2013 shortlist is:

  •  The Engineer (a multi-media project following El Salvador’s only forensic pathologist and looking at gang crime in the country) – Mathew Charles, Juan Passarelli, Ann Luce
  • Siri and Me (an online sitcom featuring conversations with the voice-activated application) – Esmeralda Kosmatopoulos
  • Orange Sweatshirt (an interactive poetry site where readers can control the words used and format) – David Devanny
  • Foursquare Tales (stories and song playlists to accompany places on the Foursquare location application)  – Declan Dineen
  • Opacity (a four-part interactive story accessed online) – Serge Bouchardon

The overall winner, chosen by a panel of judges, will receive £1,000, donated by if:book UK, while a People’s Choice winner – decided by an online public vote – will win £250.

There is also a student category, with the winner receiving a 3-month paid internship with Bournemouth-based e-learning company Unicorn Training.

The shortlisted student entries are:

  • Orange SweatshirtDavid Devanny
  • Foursquare TalesDeclan Dineen
  • The Ghosts of Yamaraja (an interactive murder-mystery based on a spaceship) – Jonathan Saunders

All of the shortlisted entries can be viewed on the New Media Writing Prize website, where people can also vote on their favourite for the People’s Choice Award.

The awards ceremony takes place in Kimmeridge House, at Bournemouth University’s Talbot Campus, from 6pm to 8.30pm on Wednesday 22 January.

The ceremony is free to attend and – alongside the announcement of the winners –three top writers will be talking about and showing their work.

They are:

  • Andy Campbell, who has created a unique body of work called Dreaming Methods.
  • Rob Sherman, author of Black Crown, Random House’s first full interactive fiction.
  • Julian McCrae, creator of The Craftsman, a multi-media thriller.

To book event tickets or to find out more about the awards ceremony visit the New Media Writing Prize Eventbrite page.