The ups and downs of filmmaking

It’s been a good week in festivals for IMPRINT. Not so good for GAS! The IMPRINT poster was shared by a festival which is considering its selection, was then selected by the Berlin Movie Awards, was selected by and then has been considered as a Finalist in the Vancouver Independent Film Festival and lastly, received extremely detailed, positive and insightful feedback from the Portland Screenplay Awards – although we’ve got to wait to see it if places in that competition. However, GAS! didn’t make the quarter finals of one of the most prestigious top-tier screenplay festivals.

I share this because some people might be forgiven for assuming that these scripts are always winning. They’re not. And as this top-tier fest explained, writing is subjective, so what might not even get selected at one festival, may in fact win at another. So if you’re a writer who’s keen to find out where there writing is currently at, I would recommend getting people to read it and eventually trying to enter into some festivals to get some form of benchmarking.

Also, two potential planned short films, that were being discussed and considered for production in the coming months, are no longer happening. I don’t understand the sudden change in viewpoint, but I wholeheartedly agree with the reason why – which is it’s time to get features happening. Although I definitely still want to make some quality shorts, like SEPULTURE, GAS! and IMPRINT, which would serve as proof-of-concepts for more ambitious feature-length projects, I do have a burning need to make a feature. However, IMPRINT is definitely a short worth making and I am going to start actively shopping that one around to find a way to get it made, even if someone else directs it. Currently though, it will need some investment – just to help us pull off a couple of key moments / give it the production value it warrants.

IMPRINT temp poster
IMPRINT temp poster

Luckily, the latest screenplay, for my vampire feature BLOOD RAGE, has had two reads, and both “loved” it. Still waiting on two other readers. But so far so good. Despite then dealing with the crushing weight of being exhausted after delivering that script on top of my other work demands, I am now making progress on the planning of my next feature project. And work is resuming on the micro short film TUMBLE DYING, which has been sadly neglected of late. I need to get it done.

An update on GAS! and more

Fresh Voices selection
GAS! is a selection and into the quarter finals

It’s been a strange, stressful and very long week. But one where it was great to learn that my WWI Short Script GAS! made it into the Quarter Finals of Fresh Voices screenplay competition. Nice. That made up for the rest of the drama and stress.

Also, it’s been fun! Each evening, the whole week, I’ve been doing a course by Lucy V Hay of Bang2Write fame, called SUBMISSION SECRETS, re helping creatives master the tricky art of presenting themselves and their creations in the best light to prospective publishers and production companies, with a view to getting work published / commissioned – like creating a creative resume, query email, one-pager or synopsis etc. It’s been very useful and nicely complements two other courses I did at the end of last year, which were also geared around different parts of the same process. And it’s also been good to meet with the same creative peeps, and network a little online this week and find out that everyone pretty much feels the same out there. You – as a creative entity – are not alone! And I’m hoping that the course will come in very handy, in the near future, when we look to secure funding for SVEN GUNNAR the feature and MURDER TOURS.

But now I need to decide if I am going to give GAS! a little polish and pay to resubmit it to Fresh Voices????

GAS! is a Semi-Finalist at NiagaraFalls Indie Festival

Gas! poster with 11 laurels
GAS! poster with latest laurels

I was very happy to see this week that GAS! – my WWI short horror screenplay was selected to and placed in the Semis at the NiagaraFallsIndieFestival. This was great news. Competition was apparently fierce, with well over 1000 entrants. So I’m happy that it placed. And it’s looking quite nice with a full row of laurels. Hopefully a few more to add before its festival run is done.

It’s a further reassurance, that although not perfect, it was good enough to submit to festivals and shouldn’t be left sitting in a drawer, forgotten. And with two other recent rejections, that came with excellent feedback, I know exactly which areas I should focus on for polishing it even further.

Many thanks to Karen Keslen for updating the poster for me.

#WWI #short #script #shortfilm #gas! 

Meet the directors – interview with L’HIFF for GAS!

a chat with Darwin Reina at L’HIFF

I recently did a 30 minute interview with Darwin Reina for his L’HOSPITALET DE LLOBREGAT INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVALhttps://www.lhifilmfestival.com – to talk about the official selection for the WWI short screenplay GAS! and you can watch a 7 minute cut down version of it above. And enjoy my corona-do; my lockdown hair cut. 😉

Thanks to Darwin and L’HIFF for the interview.

Fest update and more

Lit Scares International Horror Festival semi-finalist wreath
LIT Scares laurel wreath

GAS! has made it to the semi-finals of the Lit Scares International Horror Festival! Which is awesome! The finalists are announced on Friday Dec 12th. So fingers crossed this WWI horror short script makes it through. But it’s much appreciated to see it get through this far. I’m definitely beginning to think that this may have a future beyond being merely a writing sample…

And in other news – re TUMBLE DYING, I have managed to cut from 2hrs of total footage, down to 24 minutes. I have a workable sequence, rough cut of 2.5 minutes. But have much further to go. But I’m enjoying how this one is coming together, even if my time is quite limited.

Work is proceeding apace on two feature script ideas. I’m expecting one meeting this week to resolve for me which one is definitely going to be the official front runner, because I can’t do two at once. And although I am sure which is the natural front runner, it seems that there might be a good reason to move the other one forward, to jump the queue. Apologies for being cryptic, but I just wanted to show that not all in writing goes as planned, when you’re collaborating with others. But I’m keen to resolve that asap. – what I can tell you is that the MURDER TOURS synopsis has been well-received by 3 of the trusted readers. I’m still waiting on feedback from two others. But I do really appreciate their collective efforts and feedback.

I also surprised myself this last week, by writing a couple of micro fiction / flash fiction short bedtime stories with a Christmas theme, and no one died in them! There was a very specific reason for doing so, and in such a rush, and if anything comes of it, I will tell you more. But I was happy to challenge myself and do something very different.