Interview with Filmmaker Mitchell LeBlanc (MELODY)

MELODY was the winner of BEST FILM at the August 2020 HORROR Festival.

1. What motivated you to make this film?

I’m primarily a screenwriter and I tend to write mostly feature length projects so I spend a tremendous amount of time working on stories that won’t be seen until years later (if ever). There’s a certain sort of loneliness in working that way. When people hear you’re a screenwriter, they always ask “anything I can see?” (never “anything I can read?”) and before you’re able to convince other people to convince other people to spend millions making your projects, you don’t really have anything to show anybody. That’s an uncomfortable and isolating position for any artist since the act of sharing one’s art can often be the only payment received at the beginning of a career. So, after a few years of this, my friend (and cinematographer on the film, Sandro Pehar) upgraded his gear and said let’s make a thing and we did.

2. From the idea to the finished product, how long did it take for you to make this short?

My ideas typically swim around in my head for months — if not years — before they are committed to paper, so it’s hard to say precisely when the idea happened. The first draft of the script was finished in November of 2018 and the short was more or less completed by late May, 2019. Around 6 months.

3. How would you describe your short film in two words!?

Artistic defiance.

4. What was the biggest obstacle you faced in completing this film?

We shot in an old house that was slated for demolition. It was the dead of winter and there was no heat or running water. It was so cold (-35 celsius on one day, if I recall) that we frequently couldn’t focus our lenses because they were literally freezing. I am still impressed that our cast and crew endured that with as much grace as they did. Especially James Thorne (The Stranger) who was required to be 99% nude for all of his scenes. If not the cold, then I’d say acquiring and moving the piano onto the set. If you’re ever wondering why there are all these free pianos on Craigslist and Kijiji, it’s because moving them is no joke. Our first attempt had myself, Sandro Pehar, and Aaron Maxwell Williams (my AD, but an actor/musician in his own right) strap harnesses across our bodies and try to heave an old piano out of someone’s basement. It must have been a thousand pounds coupled with an impossible incline. It took all day and we only got it about halfway, leaving it wedged in the staircase of these Kijiji people’s house. We helped pay for its proper destruction and had to get a piano elsewhere.

5. What were your initial reactions when watching the audience talking about your film in the feedback video?

It’s incredibly fulfilling to hear that some of the stuff you tried to imbue into the film was picked up on by an audience. It was also great to hear the multiple interpretations of the film and see people filtering our work through their perspective, I think that’s when art has its longest life. But the part I keep coming back to (to the annoyance of everyone around me) is the astute audience member at the end who mentioned that they were getting Edgar Allan Poe vibes. Anyone who knows me knows that he is one of my literary heroes and takes up much of my bookshelf real-estate. I’m sitting next to a bust of him as I write this, not a joke. It’s a very cool feeling to hear that something you made has remnants of the things or people that have inspired you.

Watch the Audience FEEDBACK Video:

6. How did you come up with the idea for this short film?

I’m not sure I can explain how I’ve come up with any idea, to be fair. Most of the time it isn’t intentional. It’s more like there’s this creative engine running internally 24/7 that gets refueled when I watch, read, or listen to something and occasionally it spits out some synthesis of elements it’s been fed. The real work, I find, is knowing which ideas are worth pursuing and how to pursue them — the ideas are easy, it’s cultivating taste that’s hard. In this case, I think the idea was more of a question — what does an artist do if there is no audience and no tomorrow?

7. What film have you seen the most in your life?

I don’t know for certain, but if pressed, I’d say it’s a tie between Before Sunrise by Richard Linklater and Sunshine by Danny Boyle (writer: Alex Garland). Two movies with sun in the title, that’s weird.

8. You submitted to the festival via FilmFreeway, what are your feelings of the submission platform from a filmmaker’s perspective?

I think it’s fairly easy-to-use and it has a pretty extensive catalogue of festivals, so being able to upload your film details once and have most of your submissions consolidated on one platform is very convenient.

9. What song have you listened to the most times in your life?

I wonder if anyone could ever really answer this and know for sure. My gut tells me that Chain of Fools – Aretha Franklin is up there, even if not the one I’ve listened to the most.

10. What is next for you? A new film?

I’d love that. One of my features has been optioned by a studio in L.A. so I’ve got my fingers crossed. More locally though, I’ve written an anthology of horror shorts I’m hoping to get on its feet before the end of this year. No shortage of ideas, just a shortage of material resources.

And on that note, if I could, I’d like to give an acknowledgement to Katheryn Blundell, Adam D’Angelo, and Cory Gasparotto who agreed to help fund Melody instantaneously, solely because they believed in me and my bizarre ideas. May all filmmakers be so lucky to know people like these.

Mitchell LeBlanc

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Interview with Filmmaker Madeline Weir (ART AT THE EDGE)

ART AT THE EDGE was awarded BEST FILM at the September 2020 Documentary Film Festival.

1. What motivated you to make this film?

From a young age, I thought people were only capable of being “good” at science and math if they abandoned their creative sides. I found that school subjects were siloed and couldn’t make sense of why things had to be so black and white. I have always been interested in exploring interdisciplinary collaborations, so when I heard about Arts at CERN I was completely inspired. When I started to tackle this project, I decided I wanted to make these ideas and this seemingly inaccessible place available for virtual exploration by the public.


2. From the idea to the finished product, how long did it take for you to make this short?

I began researching and building connections at CERN in March 2019 and finished the film in May of 2020.

3. How would you describe your short film in two words!?

Inspiringly meditative

4. What was the biggest obstacle you faced in completing this film?

This film was really a one-lady show in a lot of ways. I was the researcher, full camera and sound team, and only editor. Thankfully I had incredible subjects, a talented composer, and a great support system, but making a film, primarily on your own is challenging and time consuming.

5. What were your initial reactions when watching the audience talking about your film in the feedback video?

Ecstatic! This film was completed during the pandemic, so it has not been seen by many people – let alone, have I heard commentary! I just truly appreciated hearing the way people were inspired by this program just as I was. I love how curious people become about the topic once they’ve seen the film.

Watch the Audience FEEDBACK Video:

6. How did you come up with the idea for this short film?

I learned about art residencies in major scientific research centers during a course I took abroad. I was deeply engaged in the exploration of unique artforms that incorporate scientific research. Those interests, along with my wonder about physics research and their exploration of the universe collided and led me to CERN.

7. What film have you seen the most in your life?

Probably Interstellar.

8. You submitted to the festival via FilmFreeway, what are you feelings of the submission platform from a filmmaker’s perspective?

A+ – easy to use!

9. What song have you listened to the most times in your life?

Sing – Hozier

10. What is next for you? A new film?

I’m currently working on storytelling in the clean energy industry – hoping to inspire local and state governments and other public entities to transition to renewable energy and invest in energy efficiency measures for their buildings. Hopefully I will eventually jump back into filmmaking full-force. 🙂

Interview with Filmmaker Gail Mooney (LIKE A WOMAN)

LIKE A WOMAN played to rave reviews at the September 2020 DOCUMENTARY Film Festival.

1. What motivated you to make this film?

They say, tell the story you know. As a still photographer an filmmaker I know all about being one of the few women in a male dominated profession.

2. From the idea to the finished product, how long did it take for you to make this short?

Five years.

3. How would you describe your short film in two words!?

Female empowerment

4. What was the biggest obstacle you faced in completing this film?

Limited budget.

5. What were your initial reactions when watching the audience talking about your film in the feedback video?

I was amazed how thoughtful and insightful many of the comments were and they were very upbeat and positive.

Watch the Audience FEEDBACK Video:

6. How did you come up with the idea for this short film?

I have always been in the minority as a woman working in a traditionally male – dominated field.

7. What film have you seen the most in your life?

Searching for Sugarman

8. You submitted to the festival via FilmFreeway, what are you feelings of the submission platform from a filmmaker’s perspective?

Easy to use

9. What song have you listened to the most times in your life?

These Days by Jackson Browne

10. What is next for you? A new film?

I have an idea for a film.

Interview with Screenwriter Matthew Goudie (CLOWN OF THE DEAD)

What is your screenplay about?

At its core, I think it’s about how many clown bits I could squeeze into a zombie movie, but also having fun with a genre I’ve always loved.

2. What genres does your screenplay fall under?

Mostly horror with a hint of comedy.

3. Why should this screenplay be made into a movie?

I think it’s a fresh take on a genre that is coming back from years of oversaturation, and there’s a lot more this particular world has to offer.

4. How would you describe this script in two words?

Honk honk.

5. What movie have you seen the most times in your life?

Statistically, probably Empire Strikes Back. I really wore out my VHS as a kid.

6. How long have you been working on this screenplay?

I worked on it for about a year between 2018 and 2019 and then put it away for a bit while I worked on other stories.

7. How many stories have you written?

It’s impossible to say, really. I’m constantly thinking of new stories and ideas in my head. Now, how many are on paper? That’s a different story. No pun intended.

8. What is your favorite song? (Or, what song have you listened to the most times in your life?)

It’s hard to pin down since I’m constantly jumping to new artists and albums but probably something by Jeff Rosenstock.

9. What obstacles did you face to finish this screenplay?

This was workshopped while I was in school for scriptwriting so polishing it to a professional standard and facing criticism from real experts for the first time was certainly challenging but definitely rewarding!

10. Apart from writing, what else are you passionate about?

Music and Dungeons & Dragons are two great loves, though I guess that’s still writing, just of a different sort.

11. You entered your screenplay via FilmFreeway. What has been your experiences working with the submission platform site?

Singlehandedly the easiest and most central platform for submitting to and discovering new festivals.

12. What influenced you to enter the festival? What were your feelings on the initial feedback you received?

The festival entry was priced reasonably and free feedback is always a really nice bonus. It was great to have someone ask questions that inspired me to dig deeper into the world of the script.

Watch the Screenplay Reading:

In a world of clowns, the zombie apocalypse cuts short Bozo’s funeral.

CAST LIST:
Narrator: Allison Kampf
Father Chuckles : Allan Michael Brunet
Bozo Junior : Scott Beaudin
Klumpo : Steve Rizzo

Interview with Screenwriter MIGUEL ANGEL PARRA ANGUITA (THE PINK HOUSE)

What is your screenplay about?

Basically, the story tells us that there is a place, a home for everyone. ‘The pink house’ tells the story of Pablo, a gay guy with problems to accept his age. He lives like a youngster and never thought about LGBTI senirors. Accidentally he meets Star, an old transexual who ‘lives’ in the bar that Pablo has just bought. She makes Pablo realize how hard her life was and tells him about the situation of abandonment she and her friends live in. Pablo becomes aware of how much they worked for his actual rights and joins a crazy and funny race to find a place for Star to live in.

2. What genres does your screenplay fall under?

Comedy, but with a social background

3. Why should this screenplay be made into a movie?

I think we owe it to the ones who came before us, the ones who fought for us to have freedom and other civil rights. Specially, the men and women who fought for LGBTI rights.

4. How would you describe this script in two words?

Fun, necessary

5. What movie have you seen the most times in your life?

‘The NeverEnding Story’, when I was a kid.

‘Women on the verge of a nervous breakdown’, when I was young.

‘Big fish’, in the last years.

6. How long have you been working on this screenplay?

One year. I started it when I was studying at New York Film Academy on May 2020 and endend last spring, during the quarantine.

7. How many stories have you written?

I have lots of them, short stories, plays and scripts. ‘The pink house’ is my first feature film. Now I am working in a new one. I have some short film scripts. One of them, ‘The eternal angels’, has just been shot in August and will premiere in November.

8. What is your favorite song? (Or, what song have you listened to the most times in your life?)

Probably, ‘Because you loved me’, by Celine Dion. And since I lived in NY, I listen the ‘Hamilton’ soundtrack in loop.

9. What obstacles did you face to finish this screenplay?

There were so many things I wanted to tell that it was really hard to cut it, make it shorter, to ‘kill’ some characters… And also to keep the balance between the comedy tone and the hard story I wanted to tell.

10. Apart from writing, what else are you passionate about?

I love to spend time with my friends and family, specially my nieces and my nephew. Plus I’m looking forward to travelling again.

11. You entered your screenplay via FilmFreeway. What has been your experiences working with the submission platform site?

Since I discovered FilmFreeway, it only gives me good news. The first festival I submitted ‘The pink house’ was the Madrid International Film Festival and a few days ago they gave me an award. ‘The pink house’ was one of the five Best Unproduced Scripts. I also reached the semifinals at the Nashville International Film Festival, and I got published the script and put on sell on Amazon thanks to the All Genre Screenwriting Contest. I got all of that thanks to FilmFreeway, so… thanks!

12. What influenced you to enter the festival? What were your feelings on the initial feedback you received?

As ‘The pink house’ is a movie with a LGBTI story, so I found very interesting that a specialized festival like yours could tell me what they thought about the script. And the feedback was amazing! When I heard those professional actors playing my script, I started to cry!

Watch the Screenplay Reading:

Pablo, a hedonistic homosexual with problems to accept his age, meets Star, a transsexual who used to perform at the gay bar that Pablo just bought and in which he wants to open a disco. Shocked by the harsh history of her life and the situation of abandonment in which Star and some of her friends find themselves, Pablo joins a group of activists in a crazy and fun race to get a safe place for older LGBT people, In spite of the oabstacles that a homophobic town councilor puts on them.

CAST LIST:

Narrator: Allison Kampf
Raul: Scott Beaudin
Pablo : Steve Rizzo
David : Allan Michael Brunet

Interview with Screenwriter Annika Freese (The Detour)

What is your screenplay about?

The Detour is about a woman’s search for herself as she embarks on a cross-country road trip. Specifically, it’s about Accaila MacLochlann, a twenty-four-year-old go-getter, who’s sent into a tailspin after her boyfriend proposes and Accaila realizes she has no idea what she wants from her life. When the opportunity presents itself for Accaila to drive her parents’ truck and trailer across the country to a buyer in San Francisco, she takes it in the hopes that the journey might provide some answers.

2. What genres does your screenplay fall under?

I would describe The Detour as a dramedy that leans closer to the comedic end.

3. Why should this screenplay be made into a movie?

Growing up, the only road trip movie I knew of was centered around women was Thelma & Louise. In fact, I was always told as a little girl that those kinds of adventures weren’t safe for me. I so desperately wanted to see a woman just take off in a truck and find herself along the way; I so desperately wanted to be that woman. So, in a lot of ways, I wrote this script for my younger self, for the me that needed this movie when I was little. But I think everyone can relate to what Accaila goes through in some way or another. She finds herself at a turning point in her life: she can either continue on the path she’s on or she can decide to change. I love that she takes control of her life and finds empowerment in the fact that she has no idea what she’s doing. There’s something incredibly comforting about admitting that everyone is just making it up as they go.

I think this screenplay should be made into a movie because: it allows the audience to live in the realm of total and complete possibility, a realm in which the world opens up for you; it chips away at the idea that women are only allowed to live certain kinds of lives; and it serves as a reminder that it ain’t over till it’s over. Nothing is set in stone and it’s never too late to change your life.

4. How would you describe this script in two words?

Chaotic fun.

5. What movie have you seen the most times in your life?

Probably The Breakfast Club. Or Pride and Prejudice (2005). I’m a sucker for emotional endings.

6. How long have you been working on this screenplay?

I initially had the idea for this script in 2017 and had written bits and pieces of it, but didn’t sit down and really give it a go until the summer of 2019. I worked on it consistently, rewriting and revising, and the script was completed in May of 2020. I submitted it to WILDSound shortly thereafter.

7. How many stories have you written?

I’ve written more stories than I can count, but The Detour is my first feature-length screenplay. I’ve also written a spec script for Pen15. Now, I’m working on my second and third feature screenplays, a mini-series, and I’ve been trying my hand at short stories – they help offset the length of feature scripts.

8. What is your favorite song? (Or, what song have you listened to the most times in your life?)

The song I’m loving the most right now is “Universal Sound” by Tyler Childers, but I always have The 1975, Mac Miller, and Janelle Monáe on.

9. What obstacles did you face in finishing this screenplay?

The hardest part for me was balancing Accaila’s emotional journey with her physical one. They are linked, of course, but it was difficult choosing the right obstacles to throw at her in her reality that would spark a natural internal change within her.

10. Apart from writing, what else are you passionate about?

I’m a huge feminist and care deeply about gender equality; I try to bring that to my storytelling and stay knowledgeable about what other feminist philosophers and filmmakers are working on. I’m also invested in sustainable living and eco-friendly practices. I’ve been a vegetarian for two years for environmental reasons and continue to approach my daily life with a consideration for our planet.

11. You entered your screenplay via FilmFreeway. What has been your experiences working with the submission platform site?

I’ve loved my experience with FilmFreeway thus far. Submitting to a festival can seem like such an overwhelming feat, but FilmFreeway makes it so easy to find festivals that resonate with you and fit with what you are hoping to gain from the process.

12. What influenced you to enter the festival? What were your feelings on the initial feedback you received?

WILDSound was actually the first festival I ever submitted to and I feel completely blessed and exhilarated to have had my piece selected. What drew me to the festival was the feedback aspect – I wanted to put out feelers for my work and know what areas still needed improvement. The feedback I received was so insightful; I could tell someone had really taken the time to sit down and read my script. I especially appreciated that.

Watch the Screenplay Reading:

When her boyfriend unexpectedly proposes, Accaila MacLochlann realizes she has no idea what she wants from her life. So, when the opportunity to drive across country to sell her parents’ truck and trailer in San Francisco arises, Accaila takes it.

CAST LIST:
Narration: Allison Kampf
SPENCER : Allan Michael Brunet
ACCAILA : Hannah Ehman

Interview with Screenwriter Mike Meier (The Love Hex (or Nicest Flings in Mexico))

1. What is your screenplay about?

The Love Hex or Nicest Flings in Mexico is about the many things in life we don’t quite understand, such as love, enchantment, and magic spells. I don’t quite understand them either, so don’t ask me what love is, how enchantment comes about, and if magic spells really exist.

2. What genres does your screenplay fall under?

I see it as a comedy or rom-com, even though the story also explores more profound thoughts about the nature of human relationships. In the mix are the relationships of couples, between friends, and between relatives.

3. Why should this screenplay be made into a movie?

I think moviegoers would see it as a refreshing break from the typical films being made today. The protagonists are two women who suddenly find themselves liberated in a different country in the late 1920s, and they show genuine appreciation rather than disdain for other cultures. This is a perspective that is sorely lacking in the current political climate. Overall, I hope it conveys a positive image of Mexican culture. By the way, while I took a few liberties so that the story flows better, the historical facts are largely accurate, such as the preceding Cristero Rebellion and the Hotel Peñafiel. And yes, it is said that the Hotel Peñafiel was really haunted by a barefoot ghost girl.

4. How would you describe this script in two words?

Nostalgic romp

5. What movie have you seen the most times in your life?

The 1988 animated film My Neighbor Totoro. I must have watched it 50 times or more with my kids. It is a post-war story of a family who move to the countryside. Their two young daughters befriend the wood spirits. It must have influenced me somehow, because The Love Hex also includes the connection between reality and the spiritual realm.

>6. How long have you been working on this screenplay?

A very long time. This goes back to the early 1990s, when as a law student I listened to a program on National Public Radio (NPR) in which a young lady discussed some of her social studies research for her PhD thesis. She mentioned that in the earlier part of the century, American women often traveled to Mexico to engage in illicit relationships with young Mexican studs. I was intrigued.

Years later, I tried to find that young lady and her research thesis. NPR does not archive programs for that long. So I contacted libraries and went through listings of PhD theses, but could not locate it. If I had, I would have saved myself months of research. Nonetheless, the research gave me the opportunity to learn more about Mexico and its history.

In the early versions of the screenplay, no one died. However, on a flight back from Europe a few years ago, I sat in the midst of the U.S. Olympic skiing team. During the eight-hour flight, I chatted with the young Olympic skier next to me, and I told her about my story idea. She made the point that “to have a passionate story, someone has to die.” I gave this a great deal of thought, and eventually decided to kill off Rose’s jealous husband.

With COVID-19, I found myself suddenly without work. So I pulled the old draft out and continued writing, first the screenplay, and now I am working on turning it into a book. The book will be published in 2021.

7. How many stories have you written?

Over the years, I’ve drafted about a dozen stories. COVID-19 has given me the opportunity to focus on writing. My dystopian sci-fi book JoinWith.Me just got published

(see https://www.amazon.com/JoinWith-Me-you-want-see-future-ebook/dp/B08FB72J8T/ref=sr_1_1?dchild=1&keywords=joinwith.me&qid=1600344653&sr=8-1).

I am working on publishing The Love Hex as a book (scheduled for January 2012, see https://www.amazon.com/Love-Hex-Nicest-Flings-Mexico-ebook/dp/B08HY8HQ4W/ref=sr_1_1?dchild=1&keywords=the+love+hex+meier&qid=1600341451&sr=8-1).

I am also working on two more screenplays, both thrillers.

8. What is your favorite song? (Or, what song have you listened to the most times in your life?)

I have two songs on the guitar that I practice in the morning while my computer starts up, Sisters of Mercy by Leonard Cohen (because it is beautifully written), and Darkest Hour by Arlo Guthrie (the guitar picking part is very hard, so I practice it often).

9. What obstacles did you face to finish this screenplay?

Life got in the way; that’s why it took me more than 25 years to finish it. I wrote the first draft in the early 1990s, but did not have time to even think about it for years. Years later, I wrote a little more after the Olympic skier suggested that someone has to die in the story. Off and on I added a few ideas. Several years ago, I sent a draft to my old friend Thomas to hear his opinion. When my regular job came to a standstill with COVID-19, I finally had time to focus on the story.

10. Apart from writing, what else are you passionate about?

Passionate? Maybe “focused on.” I have been playing guitar since early childhood. I am largely self-taught, but when I lived in Argentina, I studied with one of the great tango guitarists at the time, the late Carlos Luna. Everything that I can do on the guitar is thanks to him. So I start each day by stumbling to my computer with a mug of coffee. I push the “start” button on my computer, and play guitar while my computer starts up.

11. You entered your screenplay via FilmFreeway. What has been your experiences working with the submission platform site?

My experience has been positive. FilmFreeway makes the submission process much easier, and I can easily upload revised versions of the screenplay. Also, because FilmFreeway allows the upload of related documents and links, it encouraged me to create a poster for the story and a website (https://TheLoveHex.com).

12. What influenced you to enter the festival? What were your feelings on the initial feedback you received?

The festival is a great opportunity to receive feedback and some attention. The initial feedback was generally very positive and encouraging, but pointed out that there is room for improvement. Thus, I sat back down and reviewed the comments. I did take the feedback into consideration and made a few improvements (I hope). After all, as Hemingway said, “The only kind of writing is rewriting.”

Watch the Screenplay Reading:

New York in 1929, shortly before the Great Depression. Rose is unhappily married to a mobster lawyer. She suffers from early-onset arthritis. Her doctor recommends a hot spring treatment. Her friend Alice, recently widowed and a mother of three, suffers chronic fatigue. Eventually, both travel to the hot springs in Mexico and hook up with two young gigolos. The days are jolly until on the Día de los Muertos, when Rose’s jealous husband arrives out of the blue.

CAST LIST:
Narrator: Allison Kampf
Rose : Hannah Ehman
Spencer : Allan Michael Brunet
Ramiro : Scott Beaudin

Interview with Screenwriter Matthew Willis (ARINJAY)

What is your screenplay about?

Arinjay is about an ordinary boy from the real world and an extraordinary girl from the Dream World, and how they try to stay together forever… or die trying.

2. What genres does your screenplay fall under?

Drama, comedy, surrealism, fantasy, sci-fi and parody

3. Why should this screenplay be made into a movie?

Arinjay should be made into a television series because it has unlimited story-telling potential with an amazing couple in the starring roles, Roger and Jade, who have a delicious “will-they-won’t-they” romance that just won’t ever end, forever teasing an audience to watch.

4. How would you describe this script in two words?

Unlimited Dreams.

5. What movie have you seen the most times in your life?

Silence of the Lambs – dozens of times

6. How long have you been working on this screenplay?

Arinjay started off as a staged play, then became a comic that was never finished until I finally adapted it into a screenplay. Altogether, Roger and Jade have been running around in my head for seven years, but as a TV pilot, two years.

7. How many stories have you written?

Many.

8. What is your favorite song? (Or, what song have you listened to the most times in your life?)

Right now, it’s “Meet me in the Wood” by Lord Huron

9. What obstacles did you face to finish this screenplay?

The most difficult part was adapting all the source material, from the play and the comic book, and making it fit into a serialized television pilot.

10. Apart from writing, what else are you passionate about?

History, irony and love.

11. You entered your screenplay via FilmFreeway. What has been your experiences working with the submission platform site?

Positive! Filmfreeway is a great way to submit your screenplay to contests all over the world.

12. What influenced you to enter the festival? What were your feelings on the initial feedback you received?

The initial feedback was awful. Clearly the reader had not read my script because they constantly referred to it as a feature film when it was a TV pilot, and dispensed writing advice that felt copied out of a screenwriting book. But then the second reader clearly took their time to go through and pick out the pros and cons of the script.

Watch the Screenplay Reading:

How an ordinary boy from the Real World and an extraordinary girl from the Dream World plan to stay together forever… or die trying.

CAST LIST:
Narrator: Allison Kampf
Narrator Jade/Rosaline : Hannah Ehman
Narrator Roger : Allan Michael Brunet

Interview with Poet Anika Anderson

1) What is the theme of your poem?

The theme of the poem is self discovery. Finding one’s true self.

2) What motivated you to write this poem?

I began a journey of self discovery by making the choice to have a deeper relationship with The Most High (creator of heaven, earth and me).

I began to take a deeper look at who I was, what my life was like up until this point and who I am in Him. A healing process began that helped me to begin to see things differently. It helped to change the way I looked at life. It helped me to be grateful for small things and I began to discover my worth and purpose. This journey is a continual process and as each day passes I am learning more and more.

3) How long have you been writing poetry?

I have been writing poems on and off for several years and I have watched it change and evolve.

4) If you could have dinner with one person (dead or alive), who would

that be?

I know this says one person but there are two people I would like at the table Maya Angelou and Lisa Nichols

5) What influenced you to submit to have your poetry performed by a

a professional actor?

I wanted to share my poetry with others and I wanted to know what it would sound like being read by a professional actor. I wanted the emotion of the poem captured. If it being read can provide encouragement to one person then it was worth it.

6) Do you write other works? scripts? Short Stories? Etc..?

I started a short script which I am in the process of completing. There are also two books that I am also working on.

7) What is your passion in life?

To share my life experience and what I have learned with others in order to provide encouragement. To share my voice and encourage others to find theirs.

Live Again, Anika Anderson

Alive but not living
Surviving but not thriving
Wearing masks, hiding identities
Controlled but not in control
Conforming to roles, titles and positions
Giving all but feeling empty
The meaning of me lost
A life summed
On that precipice of life, I awakened to a revelation
That the the key to me was found in my Creator
The Creator and His creation a relationship never fully explored
So I began seeking to know and understand
About my purpose and design in His master plan
What I discovered was peace, love , joy, trust and intimacy with Him
Most of all I discovered how to live again

Interview with Writer Kristen Andersen (Kissing Fish)

Matthew Toffolo: What is your short story about?

Kristen Andersen: Kissing Fish is about an intense connection with nature, one’s mother, and deep feelings of love, joy, and confidence.

2. What genres would you say this story is in?

The story is under a category or genre I like to call, “Unconscious Fiction”. However, I think it could be generally categorized as a short story, fiction, or maybe even fantasy?

3. How would you describe this story in two words?

Heartfelt and Intuitive

4. What movie have you seen the most in your life?

I have seen these movies countless times in my life and know the dialogues like a sing-along: Jurassic Park, Club Paradise, Return of the Jedi, Indiana Jones & the Temple of Doom, Indiana Jones & the Last Crusade, The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring, The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King, Harry Potter & the Sorcerer’s Stone, and The Darjeeling Limited.

5. What is your favorite song? (Or what song have you listened to the most times in your life?)

I have multiple favorite songs and being a musician too, I have to name them all. :O)

Pink Floyd, Fearless; Eric Clapton version of, Classical Gas; The Kinks, Strangers & This Time Tomorrow; Led Zeppelin, Bron-Yr-Aur; Shankar Jaikishan, Title Music from Merchant Ivory’s Film Bombay Talkie; Billie Holiday versions of, Them There Eyes & The Very Thought of You; Culture, Pyaka; Bob Dylan, A Hard Rain’s A-Gonna Fall; Chris Cornell, Sunshower; Jimi Hendrix, May This Be Love; David Bowie, Sound & Vision; Ravi Shankar, Raga Rasia; Favorite Soundtrack, The Darjeeling Limited; Acustalapse, Universe.

6. Do you have an all-time favorite novel?

All-time favorite will always be, William Shakespeare, A Midsummer Night’s Dream

7. What motivated you to write this story?

My prolific and consistent dreams inspire and motivate me to write an 11 Volume series called Unconscious Memories and the story “Kissing Fish” is from Volume I: Up to the Dreamer. Volume II: Dream into the Music is coming out soon and I am extremely excited to continue writing!

8. If you could have dinner with one person (dead or alive), who would that be?

I knew you said 3 famous hilarious actors/artists/musicians to have dinner with…

❤ Jack Black-Jim Carrey-Steve Carell ❤

9. Apart from writing, what else are you passionate about?

Apart from writing, I am passionate about music, fine art, plant life, and education.

10. What influenced you to enter your story to get performed?

I love the idea of my writing coming to life through performance. I would really like to see my book series grow and inspire others to connect with their unconscious minds and learn from their dream memories!

11. Any advice or tips you would like to pass on to other writers?

Never stop writing and always believe in your voice!

Watch the Short Story Reading:

Performed by Allison Kampf

Kissing Fish is about an intense connection with nature, one’s
mother, and deep feelings of love, joy, and confidence. It is based-on
a dream memory of mine and I hope you enjoy it as much as I did
dreaming it!

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