LISP is proud to have Denyce Blackman on our Jury board. Check out the interview to get to know Blackman better.
Denyce Blackman, LISP Jury
-What impresses you the most in a story (which can be in a form of flash fiction,
short story or screenplay)?
A story which masters subtlety. Things like dialogue, for example, have the ability
to make stories fascinating in their authenticity. It often boosts the realism of the
entire story, making it feel as though the storyteller is capturing a moment,
instead of creating a fictional moment.
- How do you describe the art of the storytelling? Also, can you give us some
tips on how to master it?
Thinking about film, I’d say a good story would be one where the quickest route
is also the scenic route. Prune areas that don’t move the story forward, and avoid
over-explaining and being superfluous.
- What do you and festivals/competitions look for while curating their lists?
Festivals want stories that fall outside of the typical narrative; stories that they
feel their audiences would not have seen before. This might be a unique
perspective, a unique mode of storytelling, or an unexpected ending. A good
story will plant itself in the viewers’ minds and stay rooted for a very long time,
and these are the ones a festival wants to be associated with.
Some things are outside of the writer’s control. If their story doesn’t fit with the
theme of a particular festival, or if the competition is searching for particular
voices, there is little you can do even with a well-crafted script, so don’t lose faith
because of it!
- Finally, what advice would you like to give for the ones wanting to enter our
Screenplay, Short Story and Flash Fiction competition?
Do not be afraid to leap beyond the typical narratives!
Denyce Blackman is a journalist turned filmmaker, film programmer, and film exhibitor with a Masters in Film and Television: Research and Production from the University of Birmingham. Born in Barbados, she has also lived in Brazil and the UK. Denyce has programmed for Film Birmingham, CineQ and Queer Screens and works with Birds Eye View's Reclaim The Frame project, promoting women-led films. In 2019 she founded the award-winning Caribbean Pop-Up Cinema.