Guess what I did this weekend? Oh all right, I’ll just tell you. I revisited a passion that I’d abandoned a few years ago. Screenwriting.You see, when I began to take writing seriously my goal was to write for film. As a student at NWACC I took two creative writing classes and soaked up so much information. The man who taught both classes (Tim McGinn) was wonderful. I still see him out and about at times and we always have a little chat. Hmmm…where was I going with this? Oh! Right! For the final in those creative writing classes you had to write a short essay or letter to Tim telling him what grade you thought you deserved and why. Well, I thought I deserved an A because my writing improved vastly from beginning of semester to end. I ended with a caveat: If you don’t give me an A, when I accept my Academy Award for Best Original Screenplay I’ll forget to mention you in my acceptance speech. Or something to that effect.
I made plans to attend a film school but my health forced me to put that dream on hold. I did try to attend the University of Arkansas but found the pace impossible. When you are in pain 75% of the time you’re bound to miss classes and if you miss classes at that level you get behind. That stressed me out!
By the time my father fell ill in 2010 I had all but given up on writing for the screen. During my father’s illness and eventually his death I didn’t write at all. My focus was on him and other members of my family.
In early 2012 I began writing a novel. Since that time I’ve been focused on the many forms of creative writing. Screenwriting hasn’t been among them. I don’t know why. I didn’t even put my script writing software on my new computer. Didn’t think about it at all.When I work on a craft project, making jewelry, photo frames or paper crafts, I always ask God to guide my hands. Recently my nightly prayers have been filled with not only praise and thankfulness, but appeals for guidance. How does God want me to use my skills? For some reason, the story about Tim and my final grade popped into my mind before I fell asleep the other night. I took it as a sign.
This weekend, I pulled my screenwriting books from the shelves and skimmed through them. I visited blogs of screenwriters. And I opened Scrivener and created a new document using the scriptwriting template. For the first time in a couple of months I felt excitement for writing.
I’ve been going through story ideas and soul searching. Which ones would best fit the screen? It’s strange to kindle a flame thought dead from neglect. I question why I let it go out in the first place. Maybe I feared failure. Maybe I felt inferior. Maybe, just maybe the time wasn’t right when I felt so passionately about it before.
It’s something I want to explore again. I want to write a screenplay. I want to submit it. I want it to be turned into a script. Maybe God wants that too and that’s why I remembered Tim McGinn and that final.