Kim's reason for applying was also one of the key reasons I started this program. Writing is hard work, and it's lonely. Here's what Kim wrote when she applied, "The honest reason I’d love to be chosen to participate in your one-week screenwriting program is that I am DYING for feedback and mentorship. I am a dedicated writer who starts every day with my writing work. However, I sit alone everyday in my office and put in my work without really getting the feedback necessary to know if what I’m creating is of any quality. I am constantly striving to get better and would love to get your help."
When a writer can help another writer, even in a simple way, it's a great thing - and something we should all strive to do more of. Read below to find out about Kim's experience on the KITFR Screenwriting Program.
I enjoyed working with you. You were happy to go away and do your thing and to check in with me when you'd completed drafts. How was it for you?
Did having the one week deadline help you?
Every year I challenge myself to have a new feature script ready for Nicholl Fellowships because it’s that submission deadline that forces me to hunker down and finish a project. So, in response to your question, having the one week deadline absolutely helped. There was no getting around that I was going to have a short script completed by the end of the week. Excuses weren’t an option. No way was I going to let you or your readers down when we had agreed on a set deadline.
You're an experienced writer, you've been doing this a while --- how was this week different? Did you learn anything about yourself as a writer?
No matter the number of years I’ve been writing, it’s always a challenge to start and finish a new project. Though it’s never a calming situation to be in, I typically do thrive in a tight deadline situation. I don’t work under these conditions all the time, so this week definitely required that I remain focused and disciplined. Going through this week-long screenwriting program and successfully completing the script helped build my confidence of being able to produce under pressure.
How was my input for you, was it helpful?
Sometimes after spending hours and hours alone, drowned in the work of one particular story, I start to lose the ability of being objective. Your feedback and assistance was very helpful because it pointed out both areas that I was somewhat already concerned with, and other areas that I hadn’t realized needed work. Plus, it was awesome to receive positive notes on what you did like and what did work for you, so I knew where I was on the right track.
What I said to most of the writers at one point or another, was that they should simplify things -- have one idea and go with it. That's definitely something you were doing here with your writing. You had one solid concept, and the jokes and characters grew out of that. Did that structure come easily or did you need to work at it?
As simple as my story concept is, I did have to put in a good amount of work on the structure. There isn’t much complexity to the story, but it took some effort to keep it moving. I always try to be aware of the pacing of the stories I write. I knew in this one that I wanted it to ease in slowly as we’re introduced to Dennis, our protagonist, and then pick up in pacing as he starts to have fun and get a little crazy. I wanted the tempo of the script to coincide with the energy of Dennis’ journey.
What are your plans with this script?