I’m heading to the Austin Film Festival (AFF) tomorrow as a badge-holder, which means I get to go to some of the panels and listen to great, successful screenwriters discuss their experiences writing for film and TV. By many accounts, The Austin Film Festival is the best festival for writers, having been created for the purpose of nurturing and honoring them.
Last January I attended a warm, helpful, inspiring panel sponsored by AFF in which Noah Hawley, creator of THE UNUSUALS and MY GENERATION, and Kyle Killen, creator of TV series, AWAKE and LONE STAR, and screenwriter of the feature film, THE BEAVER, discussed writing and being showrunners for TV. Hawley and Killen were gracious, interesting, funny, smart. I loved being in the same room with them. Enjoying music, books, painting, sculpture, movies, TV shows, beautiful buildings, dance, plays are all great ways of communing with the artist. We all do it when we enjoy the arts. We can have direct experience of the creative mind when we view art. But listening to them discuss their creative process in the same room, days in a row, and going to films at night (or at least next week as the festival continues), I imagine will be even more rarefied.
During the conference and festival, which run tonight through next Thursday, I plan to write shorter blogposts more often about my experiences there. I hope to hit most of these panels:
- Opening Remarks
- How to Work the Conference: For Writers
- Sustaining a Writing Career Outside of L.A.
- Roundtable: The Business Side
- Based on a True Story
- The Creative Career: What You Need to Know
- Agents and Managers
- A Conversation with 2011 Outstanding Television Writer Awardee Hart Hanson
- The Heroine’s Journey: Writing and Selling the Female Driven Screenplay
- A Conversation With Jay and Mark Duplass
- In the TV Writers’ Room
- A Conversation with 2011 Distinguished Screenwriter Awardee Caroline Thompson
- On the Level Staffing TV
- The Art of Storytelling with the 2011 Awardees
- Producing Outside the Norm: A Conversation with Elizabeth Avellan
I’ll keep you posted. Are you going to the Austin Film Festival? Want to meet up at any of the panels? Do you want me to ask anything in particular of the panelists?