my new spec script – day 11

Today is day 11 of 14.

I was hoping to finish a first draft yesterday, and start on the second draft today, but I’m a little behind schedule.

The outline took a little longer than I wanted, but I didn’t want to jump to script until the outline was solid. Specifically, I was trying to nail down the act two out. After I come up with the logline, I figure out all the act breaks.

In a 3 act script, some people refer to the end of Act 2 as the all is lost moment. Everything is building to this scene, and then Act 3 shows the aftermath and resolution of that moment, so it’s pretty important! I knew the general conflict and tone and emotion of the scene, but because it affects so many other scenes, it took me a whole day to decide on the specific details.

I have about half of the first draft done, and the rest of the script outlined, so not too terrible. I think I can still finish by Monday or Tuesday.

my new spec script – day 5

I’m trying to write a new spec script in 2 weeks, despite having a full time job and a new hobby of archery.


Today is day 5 of 14.

I have my logline for each storyline, I have a treatment, and I’m finishing up my beat sheet.

I’ll be starting my outline later today, so I’m pretty much on schedule! Even though I don’t have any pages written, no dialogue, and no jokes, all this time figuring out the story and getting to the outline is time well spent.

my new spec script – day 1

So a couple weeks ago, I got this rough idea for a spec. I wasn’t actively trying to come up with spec ideas. I’ve been busy working on my animated web series, and writing a pilot, but this idea came to me and I debated whether or not it was worth writing.

I watched previous episodes of the show to make sure my idea would fit in within the show, and it did. Hmm. Should I spend time writing a spec? Right now? I wasn’t planning on applying to fellowships, but even if I wanted to, the deadlines aren’t till May or June of next year. I have other projects to finish that I’d have to put on hold to write this spec.

But I kept thinking about the idea, and I figured it would be good practice since I haven’t written a spec in a while. So yesterday, I just decided to commit to it and write it. The caveat is I’m giving myself only 2 weeks so that I don’t feel guilty for spending too much time on it. Here’s the schedule I made for myself.  Continue reading my new spec script – day 1

I’m writing a spec script

I’m going to write a new spec script. I haven’t written one in a while because I haven’t applied to the writing programs, but I have a good idea and I’ve been thinking about it for a couple weeks, so I decided I’m just going to commit and write it.

I have too many other projects that I’m working on, so I’m only giving myself 2 weeks, but if it takes 3 weeks, that’s ok. Here’s my schedule:

Mon 9/12/16 logline
Tue 9/13/16
Wed 9/14/16 1 page treatment
Thu 9/15/16 beat sheet
Fri 9/16/16 start outline
Sat 9/17/16 finish outline
Sun 9/18/16 start 1st draft
Mon 9/19/16 1st draft – act 1
Tue 9/20/16 1st draft – act 2
Wed 9/21/16 1st draft – act 3
Thu 9/22/16 2nd draft – 1st half
Fri 9/23/16 2nd draft – 2nd half
Sat 9/24/16 3rd draft
Sun 9/25/16 polish
Mon 9/26/16 finished (hopefully)

Once I’m finished, I’m going to post the script online in case anyone wants to read.

2016 Writing Program Notifications

(updated 9/22/16)

Notifications have started! Please let me know if you hear any news.


  • WB Writers Workshop
    They started contacting people! Congrats to one of my students who made it to the next round with a spec she wrote in my workshop!
  • NBC Writers on the Verge
    They announced the final writers on their Facebook page.
  • CBS Writers Mentoring Program
    They started contacting people!
  • Nickelodeon Writing Program
    They announced the finalists on their Facebook page.
  • Universal Emerging Writers Fellowship
    They announced the winners.


  • Austin Film Festival
    Full list of semi-finalists and second rounders here. Congrats to my writing group friend who’s a semi-finalist, and all my friends who made second round.
  • Slamdance Screenplay Competition
    They posted the semi-finalists on their site.
  • Nicholl Fellowship
    The top 12 writers have been shortlisted. Congrats to my friend Geeta who made it on the list!
  • PAGE Screenwriting Awards
    They’ve notified the semi-finalists.
  • Scriptapalooza TV
    They’ve announced the winners.
  • NYTVF Scripts Competition
    They chose 21 Official Selections.
  • NYTVF Works for Progress
    They picked 15 semi-finalists. Congrats to Thomas and Lawrence!

interview: Minty Lewis, creator of Bottom’s Butte


Even though we both live in LA, I first met Minty in Austin at the Austin Film Festival! Then we became Facebook friends and I saw that she created a short, so I had to ask her all about it. Follow this super talented lady on Twitter @mintylewis.

Your short has an alpaca and a peanut as the main characters! How’d you come up with the idea for your short?

It’s all kind of blurry when I look back on the origin, almost three years ago at this point. I knew I wanted to pitch something before I knew what I wanted to pitch, so I basically just threw a bunch of ideas at the wall and then saw what stuck for me. One of the things I was thinking about was my aunt Beverly, who has a giant, joyful, reckless personality, but now has Alzheimer’s and spent most of her life in dealing with alcoholism. Specifically, I was thinking about a story of hers in which she decided to audition for a play as she was drunkenly walking by a theater. They called to give her the lead role the next day, but once she sobered up she didn’t have the guts to follow through. The alpaca character (also named Beverly) grew out of me thinking about what it would be like if she could’ve just maintained that sweet spot of drunkenness. Like, maybe great things would have been possible if she could have just held on to that optimism and extroversion and risk-seeking behavior?

Translating these musings into a cartoon character, I’ve landed on a straitlaced alpaca who twisted her bun too tight and turned into a freewheelin’ teenager. The fact that she’s specifically an alpaca isn’t all that important, I just felt like there’d be more range in what I could do with her and the world if she wasn’t a human. People just seem more willing to accept/laugh at dark ideas if there’s a goofy cartoon face in front of them. I’ve always appreciated how nuts alpacas look with all the teeth and the hair, but you can take any creature and make it seem serious/nerdy/sexy/etc. with the details of the character design. The Peanette character grew out of a totally separate path where I was thinking about a “peanut butler,” but after I did some drawings and she turned into a burnout wearing a denim jacket, she seemed like a good pal for Beverly.


Bottom’s Butte

Behind the Scenes with Busy Philipps and me

Interview with me about the short

Continue reading interview: Minty Lewis, creator of Bottom’s Butte

web series – production schedule

I’ve been working on my animated web series, and submitted my bible and first episode to the Sundance New Voices Lab last month.

I figured out the story arc of the first season, and broke out it out into 6 episodes. I’m currently writing the scripts, but made a Gantt chart of all the tasks I need to work on. I hope I didn’t overlook anything.


So besides the writing, there’s art (characters, props, backgrounds), casting, recording the voice performances, storyboards, animatics, animation, editing, music, sound effects.

Continue reading web series – production schedule