The Write Stuff: 40 Episodes from the Panel Game of Literary Correctness

Unabridged Audiobook

Release Date
May 2024
18 hours 38 minutes
Highlights from the light-hearted literary quiz chaired by James Walton

The Write Stuff is the book-based panel show that takes a witty and whimsical look at well-known authors and their work. Host James Walton challenges the erudite contestants with tricky literary teasers, which they endeavour to answer using a combination of knowledge and guesswork.

Each episode is themed around an ‘Author of the Week’, who is the subject of the introductory rounds in which the panellists read out favourite quotations from their writing and field questions about their life. Among the intervening rounds are ‘Connections’, ‘Odd One Out’, a music round, an archive round and a fast-paced, fingers-on-buzzers round of general literary knowledge. And for the rib-tickling finale, the contestants are tasked with penning parodies in the style of the chosen author, resulting in comic gems such as Jerome K Jerome’s ‘Three Men on a Club 18-30 Holiday’, a hardboiled crime novel in the style of Virginia Woolf, and a Twitter thread by Jane Eyre.

Collected here are 40 of the finest episodes from the show’s 17 series, featuring iconic writers from Jane Austen and Charles Dickens to James Joyce, Anton Chekhov, William Wordsworth and John Milton. Pitting their wits against each other are the fiercely competitive team captains Sebastian Faulks and John Walsh, aided by celebrity guests including Stephen Fry, Miles Kington, Philippa Gregory, Sue Limb, Simon Brett, Lynne Truss, John O’Farrell, Natalie Haynes and Mark Billingham. Also included is a Christmas special, filled with festive quizzing and seasonally themed pastiches.

Clever, funny and decidedly unstuffy, this knockabout show is a must for bookworms, bibliophiles and anyone who enjoys mixing some laughter with their literature.

Production credits

Compiled, written and presented by James Walton

Produced by John Rolph, Katie Marsden, Dawn Ellis, Alexandra Smith and Sam Michell

Readers: Rachel Atkins, Beth Chalmers and Becky Hindley

First broadcast on BBC Radio 4 on the following dates:

Jane Austen 31 July 1998

DH Lawrence 28 August 1998

Charles Dickens 4 September 1998

Arthur Conan Doyle 14 July 1999

The Brontë Sisters 21 July 1999

James Joyce 28 July 1999

Oscar Wilde 11 August 1999

William Wordsworth 11 April 2001

Samuel Taylor Coleridge 10 April 2002

Virginia Woolf 17 April 2002

George Orwell 2 April 2003

Dylan Thomas 12 May 2004

Rudyard Kipling 26 May 2004

Alexander Pope 9 June 2004

Samuel Pepys 16 June 2004

The Write Stuff at Christmas 29 December 2004

Lord Byron 25 May 2005

John Milton 22 June 2005

Charles Dickens 29 June 2005

Henry James 19 June 2006

Thomas Hardy 17 July 2006

F Scott Fitzgerald 9 April 2007

John Keats 16 April 2007

Jonathan Swift 7 April 2008

Hans Christian Andersen 14 April 2008

George Eliot 28 April 2004

DH Lawrence 3 November 2008

Marcel Proust 19 October 2010

Daniel Defoe 27 January 2012

Gustav Flaubert 3 February 2012

HG Wells 24 February 2012

The Brontës 12 May 2013

Mark Twain 19 May 2013

Greek Tragedy 26 May 2013

William Blake 9 June 2013

Gerald Manley Hopkins 19 October 2014

Jerome K Jerome 26 October 2014

Henry Fielding 2 November 2014

Virginia Woolf 9 November 2014

© 2024 BBC Studios Distribution Ltd. (P) 2024 BBC Studios Distribution Ltd.
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