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My Achievements in 2020: I Wrote a Screenplay

2020 has been an incredibly hard year for many of us, due to the pandemic. It has been such a down year, and it can be easy for me to dwell on the disappointments of the slump I had with writing and film-watching at the start of lockdown or the lack of work I did despite being on furlough for nearly eight months at this point.

However, this is a time where we should be lifting each other up, especially ourselves. With that, I want to make a few posts closing this year with the achievements that I am proud of that I have done within 2020. The first of which, and one I certainly was not expecting when I started the year, was that I wrote my own screenplay for a short film.

This was not just a random idea that I had, this was part of my university course for the semester. When I saw that I had the chance to pick a screen-writing course and develop my own screenplay, I leaped at the chance to learn what I could to help me get there. I have had a concept for a short film stuck in my head for a while, only comprising of individual images and moments, and I wanted to learn the craft of piecing them all together and structuring the screenplay.

It was rocky to begin with the screenwriting, as I struggled initially to grasp how much detail and imagery I had to place in the body of the screenplay. It is not like a book, where thoughts can be implied as if it is first-person. With film, it is a visual medium and everything has to communicated in a particular manner. Once I got past that hurdle, the images within my film started to make more sense and I was able to finally put words onto my document and start writing.

It helped that I had a great group of people to help me throughout the semester, both on campus and off. Not only were the students able to help me with feedback and working on each other’s scripts, but the tutor (who is an author who has had his works adapted on screen himself) also helped with feedback that was constructive and helped me find my pacing for the screenplay quickly. His lessons were insightful, adding more layers and techniques, and helped set the ground for a screenplay that I would be proud of.

I also had some help and support from the film community when it came to working on my screenplay. I am blessed that I have connections with people who have written their own screenplays to both give me notes for my screenplay, but to even give me the starting blocks before classes even began to push me to write the best that I could. Every time I would post something on my Twitter in regards to my writing, I would get a flood of likes and support, which was such a boost to my confidence.

I will not say much about my screenplay right now, as it is still needing to go through a draft or two and I do want to submit it to festivals in 2021. I will say, though, that it is influenced by films such as Pieces of a Woman (2021) and Marriage Story (2019) with the focus on a couple who are dealing with a high-risk pregnancy and the need to focus on their relationship. It is a film that deals with a taboo topic, but I have been also inspired by the women such as Meghan Markle and Chrissy Teigan who have been open about their own experiences with miscarriages and the struggles placed on women to go through a pregnancy and the emotional connection they have with their unborn child.

I will put some pictures underneath of small moments within the screenplay right now that I am proud of, and to show the capabilities of my writing. If any producers, filmmakers etc. are reading this and are interested in having a full look at the screenplay, or if any other screenwriters are wanting a look and are willing to give me extra notes, please feel free to get in contact with me through my email: amyjensmith10@gmail.com

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