Where do you live (City, State, or Country)?
Las Vegas, NV
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?
I’m a criminal law attorney in my day job, and Muni Court was an attempt to showcase a side of the law that I don’t see depicted very often on screen: the municipal court system. Because these systems don’t handle severe crimes like murder, grand larceny, etc, they are often overlooked as story sources. However, having worked within these systems for a long time, I saw that the prosecution of even minor crimes regularly has life changing consequences for all involved (including the attorneys) and I wanted to give a spotlight to this overlooked corner of the criminal justice system.
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 have a bad habit of avoiding outlining by using the excuse that I want to discover the story by writing it instead of manufacturing it according to an outline template. This approach often works to my detriment as I end up having to toss large portions of the script (and lose the time I spent drafting them) once I’ve finally “discovered” the story. In the case of Muni Court, it took about 5 drafts to get it in the shape that it was when I submitted it to the Wiki.
What is your ultimate ambition as a writer?
My ultimate ambition as a writer is to get to the point where I can not only support myself and my family through writing, but where I have enough professional credibility that I can decide what I’m going to write and when.
Was your entry at The Wiki Screenplay Contest a full script or “the first ten pages”? Why did you make that choice?
I entered the full script for Muni Court into the Wiki because I felt it was better represented as a whole piece than by the opening pages alone.
What’s your all-time favorite movie or television show...and why?
As an 80s kid, I love Back to the Future. From the coolness of the DeLorean as a time machine, to the totally engrossing friendship between Marty and Doc, to the excitement of the “what if” that comes from time travel stories, it hit on all cylinders for me when I was a kid, and still does to this day.
What advice do you have for writers hoping to win a contest or place as a finalist as you have?
Put in the time. Read screenplays for all your favorite films (and even some of your less than favorites). Write screenplays. Like anything else, your first attempts won’t be great, but you’ll learn from them. Take those lessons and write more. Eventually, you’ll hone your abilities to the point where you can produce something you can be proud of.
What else are you working on that the world needs to know about?
My current works in progress are: Tarnished, a supernatural western feature about a sheriff who pursues a rival sorcerer who has kidnapped her daughter; and Clown Fight!, a comedy feature about a man who discovers an underground clowning club and finds himself stuck between two warring factions within the club who are ideological opposites.