Where do you live (City, State, or Country)?
I live in Campbell, CA.
Your script stood out among hundreds of others. What was the inspiration for your story and why did you write a script instead of a short story or a novel?
The world is a marvelous place with a multitude of cultures that tell their unique versions of universal stories and themes. I believe that portraying these folkloric stories to a global audience would be both educational and entertaining, so I was inspired to create an anthology about monsters from different cultures. I’ve chosen to be a screenwriter for my career so I never thought about writing my anthology as a story or novel. I spent a lot of time deciding which monster to write about in my pilot and finally picked Ireland’s Púca. The Celtic entity was mischievous, could bring good or bad fortune to a town, and shapeshifted into whatever it desired. The Púca felt like a good introduction into my Monster Carnival world, as it could be regarded as beneficial or menacing. It reflected my desire to incorporate both good and evil creatures in future episodes of my anthology because I believe that exploring our fear of the unknown touches upon the human condition in a significant fashion.
How long did it take you to write your script...and what is your writing process? Do you outline...use index cards...white board...or just start with FADE IN?
I start all of my scripts with an outline and beat sheet on a Word document. I’m unable to write spontaneously and I’m a stickler for order and organization so my outlines are heavily relied upon when I begin to write my drafts. I think starting a draft off with good structure helps me in the long run because I won’t have to make drastic adjustments to the overall story in future revisions.
What is your ultimate ambition as a writer?
I aim to be a showrunner and to write a high-concept show that transcends cultural barriers! Also, I’d love to help create more anime shows, as I believe they’re still underrated in Hollywood.
Was your entry at The Wiki Screenplay Contest a full script or “the first ten pages”? Why did you make that choice?
I entered a full script because I wanted to get feedback on my story. Regardless if I won or lost, I’d be able to use the coverage to revise my script and improve it for the next competition.
What’s your all-time favorite movie or television show...and why?
My favorite movie of all time is The Dark Knight, since it was what inspired me to become a screenwriter. I found the film to be an equal balance of emotion and action, which I believe is incredibly rare to master. It touches upon terrorism, class conflict, and morality with intelligent dialogue and gritty fight scenes but also injects heart and soul through Bruce Wayne’s personal struggles and Alfred Pennyworth’s implied fatherhood.
What advice do you have for writers hoping to win a contest or place as a finalist as you have?
Definitely get a writers group going in order to get feedback. Feedback is key. Coverage from festivals also helps but it’s unrealistic in the long run because it’s expensive so it’s prudent to find other emerging writers to get help from. Some professional writers may be kind enough to mentor writers or offer up their words of wisdom, but they’re short on time so use their help wisely. Most importantly, never give up on writing! The only difference between great screenwriters like Christopher Nolan and emerging screenwriters is that the greats persevered and followed their dreams. Screenwriting is a marathon, not a race.
What else are you working on that the world needs to know about?
I’m currently finishing up a female-driven ancient Greek fantasy pilot that touches upon identity and fate, which was inspired by my love of Greek mythology from an early age. In addition, I’m tinkering with another fantasy pilot idea about djinns in the Middle East, as I feel that my unique voice as a Gen Z Palestinian woman will create an interesting interpretation of their mythos.