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Michael Angel Johnson,LISP Film Festival 2023 Screenplay Finalist

LISP Film Festival 2023 Screenplay Finalist, Shadows by Michael Angel Johnson


-Can you please tell us about you and your daily life?

I am from New York, but I have bought a small house in a medieval village in Italy.

Because I can teach online, I am spending more time in Italy, which I love.


- When and how did you get into writing?

I thought that I would be a painter, but I really wasn’t that good. I always enjoyed writing poetry for fun. When I was in college, I was in a creative writing class. We had to write a short play. The teacher, who was a playwright, said that I was a playwright. After studying playwrighting , my love of  visual art merged, and I became interested in writing screenplays.


- How often do you write? Do you have a working routine? And what inspires you to create?

I love to write first thing in the morning for a few hours. My day can then go in different directions. And then last thing at night, I enjoy going over my writing, which makes it my last thoughts of the day.


- How does it feel to have your work recognised?

Writing can be an isolating experience, and one’s love of writing keeps one going. However, having the work “recognized” by others is a wonderful justification for all of the work done in isolation.


- What's the best and most challenging thing about writing a Screenplay?

The best part of writing a play or screenwriting is watching others bring a new life to the piece, and watching that can also be very surprising.


- How did you develop the idea for your LISP-selected script? Is there a story behind your story? And, how long have you been working on it? 

SHADOWS is a classic whodunit. Since I was a child, I have loved that genre. The twist that I have put on SHADOWS is that I have placed the murder in a church. The female minister finds her mother standing over the dead body. This had been in my mind for years before I was able to begin working on the piece.


- Can you please give us a few tips about writing a Screenplay?

My only tip is to be as honest as possible in the writing, which will organically make the piece universal. I am not saying that it is easy, but it is worth striving for in writing.


- What's the best thing and the most challenging thing about competitions and festivals? 

It can be frightening putting oneself - work out into the world. The best is be acknowledged for the work.


- Lastly, do you recommend the writers submit to LISP? 

I certainly recommend LISP. LISP is very supportive and encouraging and has created a strong community



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