I wrote a short screenplay titled “HARVEST.” The film is about how dire circumstances place two shopkeepers at the edge of a crucial decision that may tear their world apart.
I did an interview for the film’s director, Brent Brooks, for his web site. This interview and other information about the film are posted on the web blog for Blank Stage Productions as well.
Winner of the FILMAtlanta script competition. The project was written after the location, “A Klassy Clutter” was locked down. Shot over the course of only one weekend, the Blank Stage team set out to film the project.
The idea of HARVEST came after I received the script call packet and I learned about its location. I thought about interesting spins and some idea that I have not seen lately or ever before, and also something original for anyone that would watch it. I wanted to write something with a suspenseful edge and that led into making an Alfred Hitchcock-style story. I did some research for the key concept of the story and wrote it out.
2) FILMAtlanta landed “A Klassy Clutter” as a found location, was it difficult to ask to write around a set location?
Writing for a specific location was not difficult for myself because the location became a character unto itself with the siblings Brandy and Jim almost entrapped by the building into doing its work. I like challenges and being able to incorporate surroundings organically into your story instead of it just being the location of action makes everything click a lot better.
The script call gave us two weeks to come up with an initial draft, and that was a luxury! I had the location set and a number of photos definitely helped to frame the action. Then I write out a character list and a list of what I call “cool stuff” which is randomized things that would be cool to see happen in the story. The story was outlined by the end of the first week and I was finally ready to write it out. The initial draft was 18 pages long and it was too long. Brent Brooks needed it trimmed and I did trim it down to 13 pages. After going through Mr. Brooks’ reading and through fellow writers of Blank Page, factoring all new input and making further revisions, the finalized script was 11-12 pages.
Blank Page is an invaluable resource for anyone serious about writing. A writer can make all the revisions, cutting, adding and rewriting in the world however it takes an objective eye to spot the little things that need improvement. Every script can always be better, but as people, we decide where the line ends. For HARVEST, the writers pointed out some themes to play upon and helped me to plug some plot holes.
The first time I saw my name attached to the project, it was very surreal, especially with this film being my first being the sole writer instead of a contributing writer. Compared the great production and hard work that brought my story to full life, I felt extremely thankful for this opportunity. I will work and hope that my name will continue to grace the screen.
To my fellow writers, it helps to know what your primary goal is as you engage in screenwriting, or any type of writing. Know where you want to take it whether you want to one day win an Academy Award, become a selling author, or write for hobby. You want to give your talent a purpose in your life so that it works for you and not the other way around. Everything else such as script mechanics, structure, style and so forth is the easy part.
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