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In pictures: Playwrights at work

First Published 29 January 2015, Last Updated 30 January 2015

The act of writing is about as romantic an idea as they come. For centuries, people have fallen in love with the idea of locking themselves up in rooms with books stacked higher than their heads and nothing to do but put words to paper. Well, we have at the very least.

Playwriting is no exception, so we were bowled over to receive this incredibly intimate series of photographs by theatre photographer Simon Annand that offers a rare glimpse into some of Britain’s most exciting stage writers caught in the act itself.

From David Hare’s enviably book-cluttered study to Sarah Solemani’s unique watery desk, Annand’s photos offer a fascinating insight into the often mysterious lives of writers. Look past the paper-laden desks and eager eyes will spot revealing details – Hare’s Blu-Tacked photos of wife Nicole Farhi adorning the stairs or Bola Agbaje’s outdoor gym for starters! – that might just give you a fresh perspective on the writer in question.

The stunning portraits, which will be displayed at the Royal Exchange Theatre in Manchester from 25 April, were commissioned to celebrate the 10th anniversary of the prestigious Bruntwood Prize for Playwriting. This year’s competition is now open for submissions, so we would encourage anyone feeling inspired by the photos above to dust off their notebooks and get writing. You never know, Annand’s next series of portraits could include you.

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