Peter Dingwall, a once successful playwright, is running a weekend course on the art of writing plays. Five - the minimum number for a course - aspiring playwrights gather with varying degrees of enthusiasm and expectation for his class in this little country town. Clare, a housewife, ambitious for social as much as artistic reason; Brian, the wisecracking dentist; Margaret, whose bout with polio twenty years ago has left her in a wheelchair; David, a secondary school teacher of English and Neil - abrasive, sure of himself and a surprising choreographer! They have all been asked to come prepared with a piece written about their fathers and to read this aloud to the rest of the group. From this exercise, and others over the weekend we learn the legacy each has struggled to live with - a theme which is central to the plot.