Today we have part two of our interview with screenwriter Joe Brennan.
(This interview was conducted by email and no edits were made to Joe’s answers.)
Interview – part two:
SMS: What are some of your favorite screenplays?
JB: Nobodyâ€™s Fool is my favorite. What a great story.
SMS:Â Can you tell the readers a little about New Hope ? How long did it take you to complete?
JB: New Hope took years to complete only because I was still learning structure. It is a story of Faith. It has to do with Near Death experiences, Clairvoyance. It is a twisted tale that spans some 40 odd years. It has a big hook at the end and I try to leave you to decide for yourself the meaning, for that is what faith is all about. It has to do with the battle between science and religion. That is what also makes it a hard sell. Hollywood likes to stick with mainstream. Mention religion and they slam doors.What they seem to miss is that New Hope does not give you the answers. It lets you decide.
SMS: How has placing in contests changed your writing career? Have you been contacted by any agents/managers/producers? If so, did anything come of it?
JB: It pushes me to continue, but the best thing is the networking. Meeting other writers. No agents have knocked at my door.
SMS:Â Do you have any books on screenwriting on your bookshelf (or that you regularly get from the library)? If so, what are they?
JB: Yes, but they are mighty dusty. I can’t remember the names. I don’t feel I nee them anymore. They are great to get started. But you have to find your own writing skill and not mirror others. That will only limit your creativity.
SMS: Name one thing that you have done in your writing career that you think has helped you the most.
JB: Write what you are passionate about, it will shine through. Tell your great story, not one a production company wants you to tell. Unless you have a family depending on that income.
SMS: What advice do you have for screenwriters that are entering scripts into contests where they repeatedly get rejection letters?
JB: Keep writing. Don’t get stuck on one script. Move on to another one. It’s like school. If you get all Bs in first grade, you don’t keep doing first grade until you get all As, You move on to 2nd grade and try for As there. That’s how you continue to grow and learn.
SMS: Have you ever attended events like a pitchfest? If so, how was that experience?
JB: My first pitchfest was very successful. Shame my script was not as good as my pitch at the time. A major production company asked to read my script. They went with Stir of Echoes instead, so I think that what it was. I had no idea what I was doing.
That concludes part two of our interview with Joe Brennan. Part three will be coming up next week. If you missed part one, you can read it at An interview with screenwriter Joe Brennan, part one.