LISP 2nd Half 2021Short Screenplay Finalist, It Could Have Been Me, Romana Carén
- Can you please tell us about you and your daily life?
My days are very full being a freelance writer/director/producer, module leader for Raindance Film School and a mom of two young children.
My day starts with meditation followed by writing morning pages. These help me to sort my thoughts and will often guide my work and even solve issues I face with a character or a storyline I couldn’t crack on the desk.
After the school run, I do all the necessary admin work. Then I do some writing or rehearsing and later I will do the teaching.
When I’m filming my schedule is of course according to the one on set.
- When and how did you get into writing?
I’ve always enjoyed writing, but it took me a few years to find out that writing screenplays and plays is „my area“. I first attended London Film Academy, followed by a Masters Degree at Raindance and now I’m doing a PhD at DeMontford University, with a focus on directing.
The first screenplay I wrote is called „Where The Wild Roses Grow“ which was made into a film in 2011 and shown at Cannes Film Festival the year after. In the meanwhile, I have written and realized eight or nine more short films and I’ve just finished a feature film screenplay named „Schwoaza" that will be realized this year. LISP finalist screenplay „It could have been me“ is going to be shot this May and I’m really looking forward to it.
- How often do you write? Do you have a writing routine? And what inspires you to write?
Every day. Starting with my morning pages and later I write at least 3 pages a day for a screenplay.
My routine is, like for many parents, very much dictated by my children’s schedules and I have learned to be very effective with the time I have.
I’m inspired by life, by day-to-day taboos, by human behavior, by nature and by art and music.
- How does it feel to have your work recognised?
It’s of course an amazing feeling. When you’re working on a screenplay it’s never clear what the response to it will be. As an artist, I’m used to putting immense effort into my work and the reward is something that might come or not. This recognition is not just a great honor but it also encourages me to keep writing!
- What's the best thing and the most challenging thing about writing a Screenplay?
Trusting the idea and my own skill set ;)
- How did you come up with the idea for your LISP selected story? Is there a story behind your story? And, how long have you been working on it?
„It could have been me“ was inspired by the tragic culmination of femicides last year and the death of a child star in the late 80ies, who was killed by her own father. I researched into the traumatizing effects and variations of domestic violence. This screenplay is a proof of concept for a feature film-length screenplay I intend to develop to give this important topic enough space and those who feel unseen the notion that they are not forgotten.
- Can you please give us a few tips about writing a Screenplay?
Write every day. It doesn’t matter if you feel it’s good what you’re producing every day. But keep writing. This will give you the practice and establishes a routine that can even prevent writer’s block. And: keep a notebook with you at any time to ensure you write down any snippet of inspiration you might encounter in the most unforeseeable situations.
- What's the best thing and the most challenging thing about competitions?
The best thing is to learn about all those other talents and their work. It’s incredibly inspiring.
I haven’t found anything challenging about competitions, because I’m happy for others when they win as much as when I win.
- Lastly, do you recommend the writers give a go on LISP?
Absolutely! It’s a standout competition and being recognized by them makes me really proud!