Kids' soap opera, with a cameo by Nick Hornby: "Dead Ends"

Lucy writes,

Best-selling author Nick Hornby has a cameo role in a new soap opera, written by young people at the creative writing centre he co-founded in Hackney. Created through after-school workshops with input from EastEnders writers, 8 young writers devised and scripted 4 episodes of a new soap opera inspired by Hoxton: 'Dead Ends'.

The project is a new venture from UK charity the Ministry of Stories, co-founded by Hornby and celebrating its second anniversary this month. The Ministry chose to work with soap as a genre that young people engage with and understand. Writing about their own local area and in a style they enjoyed, young people turned themselves from audience members into confident, motivated writers.

Dead Ends follows the stories of Andrew, a young man trying to put his troubled past behind him; his mother, Lou, who has a dark family secret to guard and the hapless Chloe, a local girl who has fallen in love with a man that she can't have. These individual stories combine towards a dramatic and shocking climax!

Ministry of Stories is my local literacy charity (my office is a block away in Hoxton), and they do awesome work. And they've got a secret door. And they sell screams in jars, as well as candied ear-wax.

Dead Ends | Ministry of Stories (Thanks, Lucy!)


  1. It’s obvious the inspiration is somewhere between “Eastenders” and latter-day episodes”The Bill” – some of the actors in this segment are quite compelling, however I’m not certain that most American viewers can decipher the heavy East End patois. Gritty realism is what a lot of British TV drama is about (see: anything ever broadcast on ITV) and I suppose it’s great that kids and young adults are writing about their neighborhoods. Jolly good!

    1. “Gritty realism is what a lot of British TV drama is about (see: anything ever broadcast on ITV)”

      I’m a Coronation Street man myself, although I definitely wouldn’t put that in the gritty category :P

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