|Lovely snowy day. I actually adjusted the contrast|
so the peak would stand out. The sky was
bright and sunny directly overhead.
I feel so blessed to have participated in BYU's writer's conferences nestled deep in the mountains near the Sundance Ski Resort. For four days, the conference convened at a lodge BYU has on the back side of Mt. Timpanogos that I never knew existed. It snowed, it rained, and we even had perfect weather. But more importantly, we had amazing guest speakers that offered insight into the screenwriting process and the overall world of screenwriting.
|View of Timp from the porch of the lodge.|
|Jared & Jerusha Hess|
Rebecca Thomas, who directed an episode of Stranger Things, the feature Electrick Children, and is a BYU Alumni, was interviewed and fielded questions from the group.
Have you ever watched an episode of The Office where Dwight Schrute is on his beet farm? If you have, you most likely have seen Mose Schrute, Dwight's silent Amish cousin.
|Mose Schrute, a.k.a Michael Schur|
Schur taught us some very important principles about screenwriting. One thing I thought was interesting is how as a writer, we might have an idea who the character is. But often the actor will bring something to the table that will require you to adjust your perspective. And as a writer, if you don't listen to the actors, you may need to step back and reconsider your approach to screenwriting. He used the example from Parks & Rec of the character of Ron Swanson. Originally Ron was supposed to be a conniving, corrupt bribe-taking politician. Schur explained that Nick Offerman is actually full of integrity, so it was odd for him to play the character that way. Also Offerman really does build his own canoes as we see Ron Swanson doing in an episode. So Offerman changed who Ron Swanson is, and thankfully because Ron is such a fun character as Offerman plays him.
I have a notebook of other great advice from all of these amazing guests at the conference, but I think I'll keep them to myself. One last little thing I must say. Courtney and Tom Russell, thank you so much from the bottom of my heart for all of your hard work and dedication to making this writer's conference such an amazing experience. Also to Jared who cooked some of the best food I've had (dreaming about that Alfredo sauce now... YUM!).