Featured Students of Created

Anna Westbrook

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When did you begin as a creative writer?

 

I have been a writer-in-training since childhood. I was always telling stories – long, complex sagas set in fantasy worlds when I was a little kid, cringeworthy poetry as a teen, and then finding voice at university, where I wrote my first published novel, Dark Fires Shall Burn.

 

Why do you write?

 

I write to make sense of the world. Often, I don’t know how I feel about something until I write about it. Writing holds your thoughts up to the light and makes you sit with them. It can be lonely, but it is also very intimate. Reading and writing gives solace and leaves imprints of ourselves after we have gone. 

 

 

What got you interested in writing for film?

 

Like many people who write novels, I think I have quite a vivid, visual imagination, and my books unwind like a filmstrip in my head as I construct them. I’ve always loved film – going to the movies is one of my favourite things – and to write for film seemed an instinctive extension. Also, I’m attracted to the collaboration. So many people come together to make a film, and, ultimately you get to see an interpretation of what you’ve put on the page. 

What kind of subject matter/themes are you interested in for your work?

 

A thread throughout all my projects is the tension between realities: how dominant cultural and historical narratives suppress others, and how individuals dissemble for myriad reasons. Basically, why we distort and occlude our telling of our lives to suit ourselves, and how these confected realities, (some harmless or unconscious and some malignant), inevitably collapse on themselves – and then who the casualties are. Conflict, in essence, but how it foments via incremental deceptions until you get schemata of untruths.  

 

 

Can you tell us a little bit about your current writing project in your course with Created?

 

After a high school dance in country New South Wales, a mother covering up for her teenage son’s reckless actions precipitates a crime with tragic outcomes. My project, Meniscus, is a study of a woman’s irrevocable impulse decision, motivated out of loyalty, within a particular culture of toxic masculinity in Australia. 

 

 

 

How has Created's 'Write a Screenplay' course helped you develop your writing skills? 

 

The ‘Write a Screenplay’ course is an excellent way into screenwriting, comprehensively breaking down each step of the process. Ben Ferris is an insightful, thoughtful, sensitive and inspiring knowledge-bank with a great eye. I was intimidated by the technical element of screenplay and this course has furnished me with skills and confidence. 

 

 

 

What are your aspirations for your future writing work?

 

I am currently finishing my difficult second novel: a story of 1980s Cold War paranoia played out domestically in upstate New York. I would love to be involved, given the opportunity, in adapting it into a screenplay. And I am motivated to enter Meniscus, the short film I wrote for Created, into competitions and seek funding to get it produced.

When did you begin as a creative writer?

 

I was exposed to creative writing purely through my English subject at school which allowed me to recognise my interests and abilities within such writing. I rarely professionally exercised my creative writing abilities, creating mostly personal pieces.

 

 

Why do you write?

 

Writing for me is, as it is for most people, a form of personal expression. Writing allows me to conceptualise and channel emotional complexities into both a direct and narrative context, which can instil personal growth within yourself and those who connect with your work.

 

 

What got you interested in writing for film?

 

Film has always been a creative industry that I am passionate about and would like to pursue in the future. As a result, I spend the majority of my time brainstorming and experimenting with ideas. I wanted to gain the skills and knowledge to develop these ideas and utilise my writing skills as all films, big or small, begin with a screenplay. 

 

What kind of subject matter/themes are you interested in for your work?

 

I have always been naturally drawn to melancholic/horror themes and subject matter that explores the human psyche and one’s emotional identity as I view such exploration as an essential part of life. 

 

 

Can you tell us a little bit about your current writing project in your course with Created?

 

My current writing project within the course incorporates all the themes/subject matter I mentioned earlier as the screenplay I am developing with Created is about an emotionally turbulent protagonist and her metaphorical journey into understanding and accepting her trauma.

 

 

How has Created's 'Write a Screenplay' course helped you develop your writing skills? 

 

Created’s ‘Write a Screenplay’ course has allowed me to further examine the complexities of what makes not only a good story, but a screenplay. The depth within unpacking each student’s idea and constructive and encouraging feedback enhances my writing skills and ensures that my work is the best it can be.

 

What are your aspirations for your future writing work?

 

I hope to utilise the skills I have acquired from the course to assist my potential future in the film industry as a writer/director.

Chloe Lapic

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