Katarzyna Adamus, LISP Screenplay Semi-Finalist
Can you please tell us about you? Where do you live and how is your daily life?
I'm Polish, living in England for 10 years. Educated as an ethnologist, currently I work part-time as a ghostwriter. I have my own publishing house 161 Days, through which I publish my books and publications - all kinds of journals and planners. Previously I worked as a secretary at the police station, security guard and sales manager.
Recently, my daily life is focused on writing and painting. Painting is a new hobby. Sometimes I fall into a trance and paint all day and night.
When did you start writing? How often do you write? We want to learn all about your writing life!
I've been writing for several years. I started writing when I was 16 and continued until I started studying at the university. The reason for the gap was that I was able to write easily, but had nothing to write about. I started writing again 8 years later. This writing episode lasted 2 years, until I came to England. After a few years break i started to write again in 2016 year and continue till now.
At the moment I try to write on daily basis. I published in English language so far a compilation of short stories, tilted „Losers”, which you can find HERE (click please!)
I have one more book to come out soon.
How did you feel when you learned that you are a Semi-Finalist on The London Independent Story Prize?
I felt very motivated and encouraged, when I get to know these news. Especially that it was my first ever written screenplay, which most of screenwriting gurus advise to bury somewhere in the deep forest, and then run away, making some sophisticated spells.
What's the best thing and the hardest thing about writing a Screenplay?
I have written so far this one screenplay, but from my point of view, the hardest thing might be when you try to tell the story you do not believe in truly. If you believe in the story and have a passion for it – it makes your writing flow. I am telling this on experience of few novels started projects. The best thing is when you complete the draft, put it aside and read after few months.
How did you come up with the idea for your LISP selected script? Is there a story behind your story? And how long have you been working on it?
I wrote this screenplay during one day, so I had to go for a topic close to my heart, which was painting. One of my friends told me once in a fury – that I will never become a painter. That time I answered that it does not matter, as far as it gives me joy.
But these words stuck somewhere in my mind. Few months later I decided to get this theme and create a short screenplay. Two arguing friends would be too boring, so in the screenplay there is a couple of blocked artists. The husband got debts, they might lose the house. In face of serious financial problems, an attempt to paint and sell pictures comes to them naturally but also raise a big conflict and fight between them.
Can you please give us a few tips about writing a short screenplay?
I do not feel at the moment wise enough to advise about writing screenplays, but I can give few tips about writing in general. First of all, do not be a quitter! If you love writing, make it your everyday habit and a joyful process. Writing a diaries helps – plus you are in superior position, writing about others – the historians will find your diaries and those who misbehaved will be forever memorised as evil characters. Talking more seriously – writing diaries helps, as you always got a topic to write. Everyday life is full of events, small miracles, but also failures. You can portray all these ups and downs in your diaries. It will help you to improve your grammar plus to you will come up with own voice and style.
Another advise is to do writing outside. Take a notebook and start watching people. Try to find someone who stands out from the crowd. (If it is you you might have problem to watch others, when everyone is staring at you, so wear for this occasion Earth tone coloured clothes). Take a sit in cafe next to the windows. You are allowed to stare – it is your profession or a would be profession after all. Make notes. Describe everything worth to be written.
Another tip is to start doing small exercises. One day you can practise creating vivid description. The other day – great dialogues.
Also, give yourself permission to make mistakes! You can correct everything later.
What's the best thing about writing competitions?
The taste of being awarded, gives you encouragement and makes you stronger. Also such awards can shut up few non-believers, who were trying to convince you for few years that you should work in the factory or as an accountant.
Also, as i would like to see this screenplay filmed, this semi-final award might help to catch interest of people, who could make it happen.
Of course, everyone will find own reasons. For me it was mainly test of the quality of my writing.
Lastly, do you recommend the writers to give it a go on writing a Screenplay and LISP?
100 % yes. I am going to take part also myself in the further LISP competitions.