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Screenwriter Interviews

Writers: If you've finished first, second, or third in any screenwriting competition listed on MovieBytes, we'd like to interview you! First, make sure the contest results for the year you won are posted on MovieBytes, including your name, so we can verify your submission. Then submit our online interview form for that contest. We'll notify you via email when your interview has been posted.

MovieBytes Interview:
Screenwriter Jeffrey Russel

An interview with screenwriter Jeffrey Russel regarding the Chicago Screenplay Contest Writing Competition.

Q: What's the title of the script you entered in this contest, and what's it about?

A: GRACE - This is an historical drama based on actual events. In 19th century Scotland, a brave young woman born into privilege risks everything to stop the brutal eviction of tenant farmers.

Q: What made you enter this particular contest? Have you entered any other contests with this script? If so, how did you do?

A: Chicago was important because it represents a mid-western US audience. we have won 25 festivals with this script and have also garnered over 40 other awards including Honorable Mentions, Awards of Excellence, Runner-up and more. All are listed on our website

Q: Were you satisfied with the administration of the contest? Did they meet their deadlines? Did you receive all the awards that were promised?

A: The administration responded quickly to out questions and email. Deadlines were met and we have a beautiful trophy for winning 2nd place.

Q: How long did it take you to write the script? Did you write an outline beforehand? How many drafts did you write?

A: We have been working on GRACE for 18 months. I wrote an outline in Scotland when we were there to research the story. The number of drafts in incalculable, but it's probably around 300.

Q: What kind of software did you use to write the script, if any? What other kinds of writing software do you use?

A: Final Draft 8, However, we have upgraded to Final Draft 9.

Q: Do you write every day? How many hours per day?

A: Do I write every day? The short answer is yes. I put in as many as I can. Usually I'm at my desk for 5 or 6 hours a day, but that may not be entirely spent on writing.

Q: Do you ever get writer's block? If so, how do you deal with that?

A: No. I don't think I've been at this long enough to experience block. Right now my imagination is more like a river flowing down a steep grade. I have to hustle to keep up.

Q: What's your background? Have you written any other screenplays or television scripts?

A: I now have three scripts available. Two complete and one in progress.

Q: Do you live in Los Angeles? If not, do you have any plans to move there?

A: I live in Toronto, but I'd love to live in LA for part of the year. At the moment, its pretty easy to go back and forth as I need.

Q: What's next? Are you working on a new script?

A: Yes, a new script is on the way. Once again, its completely different from any of the others I've penned. I expect to have it ready for my editor in about 6 weeks.

Posted Wednesday, September 17, 2014

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