Winning Short Story – The Ferry Man by Jax Logan

Performed by Amaka Umeh

Get to know the writer:

What is your short story about?

A serial killer.

What genres would you say this short story is in?

horror

How would you describe this story in two words?

Grim Reaper

What movie have you seen the most in your life?

Lord of the Rings

What is your favorite song? (Or, what song have you listened to the most times in your life?)

Sting / So lonely

Do you have an all-time favorite novel?

I like a lot of the Ken Follett books

What motivated you to write this story?

I was working on a film script with the same theme and thought it would make a great one pager.

If you could have dinner with one person (dead or alive), who would that be?

Taylor Swift (yes, I am shallow) and there would have to be desert.

Apart from writing, what else are you passionate about?

My kids (most of the time)

What influenced you to enter your story to get performed?

I saw a promotional email from FilmFreeway

Any advice or tips you’d like to pass on to other writers?

Before you jump in to something, understand what you’re jumping in to.

Winning Short Story – A Far Distant Wind by L S Kleinschmidt

Performed by Val Cole

 Get to know the writer:

What is your short story about?

A Far Distant Wind tells the story of an everyday person living her life who becomes trapped in an international crisis and learns the importance of living everyday.

What genres would you say this short story is in?

Dramatic Memoir –

How would you describe this story in two words?

Tragic realities

What movie have you seen the most in your life?

I have a LONG list, but definitely one is Schindler’s List. Another is Forest Gump, and of course any movie with Sidney Poitier, Fred Astaire or directed by Alfred Hitchcock.

What is your favorite song? (Or, what song have you listened to the most times in your life?

It’s not actually a song – I love Gershwin’s Rhapsody in Blue. A favorite song is Moon River.

Do you have an all-time favorite novel?

Again, there are many, and my favorite changes regularly, probably too regularly, but Grapes of Wrath is one of the best.

What motivated you to write this story?

A news story and my deep passion for telling stories, understanding history, and New York City

If you could have dinner with one person (dead or alive), who would that be?

Again, I have a long list, but Pope John Paul and Jacqueline Kennedy would be definite choices. Their courage during terrible times and their dedication to history, country, and human freedom impressed me greatly. As a writer and lover of movies and screenwriting, I would have loved to meet Robert Osborne on TCM.

Apart from writing, what else are you passionate about?

Improving literacy skills ( writing + reading as without both, a free society is lost); human rights and advocacy also can help everyday persons live happier meaningful lives.

What influenced you to enter your story to get performed?

A recent connection I made on LinkedIn told me about the festival. I’ve been writing in multiple genres for years, and I particularly love the power and emotion of oral dramatic performance. So, I submitted the story.

Any advice or tips you’d like to pass on to other writers?

Ideas are everywhere around you, but it is the constant gathering and personal consideration of them that makes you a writer. Being in the right place at the right time is luck, but when that stroke of luck appears, you need the talent and the experience to discover the story only you can tell. Then you have to know how to tell it right. I believe good writing is all about scene, and you learn scene and how scene delivers character, theme, and story by watching tons of movies. I do that all the time.

 

 


Director/Producer: Matthew Toffolo http://www.matthewtoffolo.com

Casting Director: Sean Ballantyne

Editor: John Johnson

TV CONTESTSUBMIT your Short Screenplay or TV SPEC Script
Voted #1 TV Contest in North America.
SCREENPLAY CONTESTSUBMIT your Short Screenplay or FEATURE Script
FULL FEEDBACK on all entries. Get your script performed
SCREENPLAY CONTESTFIRST SCENE (first 10pgs) SCREENPLAY CONTEST
Submit the first stages of your film and get full feedback!

Short Story Reading of THE ATTACK by Mark Renshaw

Performed by Val Cole

 Get to know the writer:

What is your short story about?

It’s about a guy experiencing a severe panic attack. From his perspective, he views these incidents more like battles, as if he’s being assailed by an invisible force. Using this viewpoint helps him to focus through the pain and fight back.

What genres would you say this short story is in?

Drama.

How would you describe this story in two words?

Grief, recovery.

What movie have you seen the most in your life?

I’m a sucker for the original Star Wars trilogy.

What is your favorite song? (Or, what song have you listened to the most times in your life?)

My favourite song changes as time goes by. One of the ones I keep going back to though is Dream On by Aerosmith.

Do you have an all-time favorite novel?

One of the few books I’ve read numerous times is Legend by David Gemmell.

What motivated you to write this story?

At the time, I was trying to cope with the loss of my mother and I was experiencing anxiety and panic attacks for the first time in my life. Writing this was quite cathartic.

If you could have dinner with one person (dead or alive), who would that be?

Isaac Asimov. He’s my literary hero.

Apart from writing, what else are you passionate about?

I love turning my work into produced films. I’ve produced two of my own stories so far and I’m in post-production of a third. It’s amazing to see what I’ve written given life on the screen.

What influenced you to enter your story to get performed?

I entered a Doctor Who TV script into the Fanfiction Festival a couple of years ago, and it won a table read. It was wonderful to see the script performed by real actors so I decided to try something similar with one of my short stories.


Director/Producer: Matthew Toffolo http://www.matthewtoffolo.com

Casting Director: Sean Ballantyne

Editor: John Johnson

TV CONTESTSUBMIT your Short Screenplay or TV SPEC Script
Voted #1 TV Contest in North America.
SCREENPLAY CONTESTSUBMIT your Short Screenplay or FEATURE Script
FULL FEEDBACK on all entries. Get your script performed
SCREENPLAY CONTESTFIRST SCENE (first 10pgs) SCREENPLAY CONTEST
Submit the first stages of your film and get full feedback!

Winning Short Story: Post Mortem Rebellion by Jax Lemon

Performed by Geoff Mays

Get to know the writer:

What is your story about?

A serial killer wakes up 30 years after a cryogenic life sentence just to find that a surviving victim has cloned his victims for revenge.

Why should this story be read by people?

It’s a hell of a ride with a great payoff.

How would you describe this story in two words?

Sci-fi thriller

What movie have you seen the most in your life?

I like Pulp Fiction – can never seem to get enough of it. Cures hangovers, the blues, lazy Sunday afternoon boredom, etc.

How long have you been working on this story?

I had the idea for the story probably 20 years ago but I think the this version is the best. Took me a morning to write.

Do you have an all-time favorite novel?

Lord of the Rings

What motivated you to write this story?

I write thriller film scripts and it was a challenge to write a mini-thriller in 400 words.

What artist would you love to have dinner with?

Oh – it must be Banksy – that’d be fun! And he could paint the walls on the way home.

Apart from writing, what else are you passionate about?

I mostly write film scripts so watching movies is a must! 🙂

What influenced you to enter the Novel Festival?

I received a promo email from FilmFreeWay.

Any advice or tips you’d like to pass on to other writers?

Follow your passion – and don’t expect to get rich.

*****

Producer/Director: Matthew Toffolo http://www.matthewtoffolo.com

Editor: John Johnson

Casting: Sean Ballantyne

Winning Short Story: THE POET by Stephen Karnaghan

Performed by Geoff Mays

 
Get to know the writer:

What is your story about?

‘The Poet’ is a story about the lies we have to live in order to be accepted and praised. Even at the end of time, the protagonist has to lie to be accepted, when his truth is lost for ever.

Why should this story be read by people?

All the artists of the world, working to be recognised, and working to have their work loved by the masses have to create a body of work that is accepted. Is this the true message they want to put across? How would they react in the same circumstances?

How would you describe this story in two words?

Truth lost

What movie have you seen the most in your life?

‘Koyaanisqatsi’ by Phillip Glass.

How long have you been working on this story?

As I work on several things at the same time, it is difficult to say how long it takes me to write something. I really wanted to write something positive, that at the end of time truth would take centre stage. However, I couldn’t write that.

Do you have an all-time favorite novel?

At the moment my favorite novel is ‘The Beckett Trilogy’. Each time I read it I find new writing to enjoy.

What motivated you to write this story?

After reading ‘The Beckett Trilogy’ I thought about death and how it is treated in commercial literature. From my initial planning I thought about the end of time and how it would be treated.

What artist would you love to have dinner with?

I would like to have dinner with a really successful writer in order to understand their idea generation process.

Apart from writing, what else are you passionate about?

I am passionate about composing music that has not been heard before. Music that helps people create.

What influenced you to enter the Novel Festival?

My main aim is for my writing to have an audience. The Novel Festival is the best way of doing this.

*****

Producer/Director: Matthew Toffolo http://www.matthewtoffolo.com

Editor: John Johnson

Casting: Sean Ballantyne

Winning Short Story: Seedy Hotel Sex by R James Turley

Performed by Geoff Mays

 Get to know the writer:

What is your story about?

A guy angered from rejection.

Why should this story be read by people?

Because I think a lot of people can relate to getting rejected by someone they lust after.

How would you describe this story in two words?

Lonely heart.

What movie have you seen the most in your life?

Major League.

How long have you been working on this story?

One day

Do you have an all-time favorite novel?

No, just love fiction.

What motivated you to write this story?

I wanted to write something erotic.

What artist would you love to have dinner with?

Sir Paul McCartney

Apart from writing, what else are you passionate about?

Baseball

What influenced you to enter the Novel Festival?

An email

Any advice or tips you’d like to pass on to other writers?

Just keep writing.

*****

Producer/Director: Matthew Toffolo http://www.matthewtoffolo.com

Editor: John Johnson

Casting: Sean Ballantyne

Winning Short Story: On the Hill by Kenya Abney

Performed by Geoff Mays

Get to know the writer:

What is your story about?

The main character’s childhood boyfriend breaks up with her before they go off to college. It is about how she lets that event overshadow all the events unfolding around her.

Why should this story be read by people?

Everyone has experienced an unexpected ending of a relationship. Some people live in the emotions of loss. Others take a pause and move unto the next moments in life.

How would you describe this story in two words?

Relatable experience.

What movie have you seen the most in your life?

Love Jones

How long have you been working on this story?

It took me a couple of hours to write it. And, it took a little longer for me to cut it down to fit on one page.

Do you have an all-time favorite novel?

No.

What motivated you to write this story?

I wrote it based on a writing prompt that I found online.

What artist would you love to have dinner with?

Alice Walker. She has lived an interesting life. She creates great characters. I would like to get her perspective on life and writing.

Apart from writing, what else are you passionate about?

I enjoy reading, watching movies and dramatic television. To be honest, I am still discovering/uncovering my passions.

What influenced you to enter the Novel Festival?

One of my resolutions for this year is to give my writing a chance to be read. I entered the Novel Festival because it is amazing for someone to bring my words to life. I am interested to see how a professional actor would interpret what I wrote.

11. Any advice or tips you’d like to pass on to other writers?

1. You probably won’t get it right on the first try. Allow those words to give you freedom. Whether it is good or bad, write it down. You can do rewrites until it is where you want it to be.

2. Sometimes you must let go of good words. You will probably write a sentence or paragraph that you are absolutely in love with. In the rewrite, it may not fit anymore. Or, someone will read it and make suggestions on how you can improve upon it. To give your story the greatest chance at being its best, you should be open to making improvements.

3. You are courageous and fantastic. It is daring to take something from your imagination and give it a life. It is fanciful to be creative. Writers are sometimes hard on themselves and their work. Since it comes from your head, you are in your head about it. Believe you can nurture and birth your work into the world. Have enough Faith in yourself to take action with your writing.

*****

Producer/Director: Matthew Toffolo http://www.matthewtoffolo.com

Editor: John Johnson

Casting: Sean Ballantyne