Every month, we celebrate the hard work of three talented Script Mother screenwriters with our (FREE!) Scripts of the Month competition. This month, our winners feature everything from bloodthirsty waitresses to Homecoming jitters! So, without further ado, give a round of applause to Michael Kospiah, Vineeth Premanand, and Dan Harris!
“Honey Mustard” by Michael Kospiah
Logline: After being stiffed, an unhinged waitress, hellbent on revenge, torments the customer who didn’t tip her and his surprisingly resourceful family.
We sat down (virtually, of course) with Michael to ask him a little bit about his script and his writing prospects.
What inspired you to write “Honey Mustard”?
I was inspired to write “Honey Mustard” after working in the restaurant industry for almost 20 years as a server, bartender, manager, cashier, busboy… pretty much every position there can be in a restaurant. I remember specifically being swamped while waiting tables years ago and I forgot to give some dude his honey mustard. On the check, instead of writing a tip on the credit card receipt, he wrote “Honey Mustard”. Which got my blood boiling! Of course, I wasn’t going to do anything about it, but it sparked the idea for the script. Naturally, as a massive horror fan, I wrote it as a horror film. But I didn’t just want to write another slasher movie, I wanted to toy with the audience a little bit and mess around with the structure (SPOILER ALERT: There are twists.)
What challenge, if any, did you overcome while writing Honey Mustard?
I had 60 pages of the script written, but it just didn’t feel right… I crumbled up the outline, deleted most of those pages, and started over again. I may have gone through this a few times while writing it, just until everything felt right. I was able to knock out a 1st draft in a few weeks but kept tinkering and tinkering. And I still tinker with it here and there….
A script isn’t finished until it’s a film. Even then, I’ll look back at [my produced movies] and wish I could’ve written something differently.
What writing goals do you have on the horizon? And how does Script Mother play into them?
I’m always writing… I’ve always used screenwriting platforms like Script Mother to fine-tune my work, sort of like a stand-up comic testing new material at comedy clubs in preparation for their hour special. And I’ll continue to do so. My first produced feature film, “The Suicide Theory”, was workshopped on sites like Script Mother, and I was hired to write my 2nd produced feature film… through sites like these. …my horror-dramedy “They Never Left”, which is posted on Script Mother right now, is in development [at] Abandoned House Productions with Clay von Carlowitz (“My Bloody Banjo”) and Asta Paredes (Amazon Prime’s “Sociopatha”.)
It’s all about testing your material and improving it while also reading other people’s work to keep your brain muscle moving during lulls in activity… also helping other people get their scripts into the best condition possible.
And that’s what Script Mother is all about! Writers helping writers be better writers… right? Right. Write!
Michael Kospiah is an award-winning screenwriter and playwright based out of New York City. His first film (“The Suicide Theory” 2014) has a 79% score on Rotten Tomatoes. His most recent script (“They Never Left”) is in development at Abandoned House Productions and currently available for review on Script Mother! Click here to check out his work.
“Plans are Fantasies” by Vineeth Premanand
Logline: After several unsuccessful attempts to secure dates to school functions, awkward high school sophomores Rosh and Sal pursue their objects of affection one final time before the Homecoming dance.
While you can earn credits for peer review on Script Mother, we also provide monthly winners FREE script coverage from one of our industry professionals. Check out these excerpts from our notes on “Plans are Fantasties”:
You won my attention from the very first page based upon Rosh’s immediately upbeat and lovable personality. I knew exactly who this teenager was based upon your description… and better yet, I loved him!
If your protagonist is going to share information with us via voice-over, it needs to either be incredibly character-building — information we wouldn’t be able to get otherwise — or inform your tone. (You could look at the use of Patton Oswalt’s character in “Happy!” as a good example of this. Likewise, J.D.’s hallucinations in “Scrubs” are a hallmark of the show.) If you can take out the voice-overs without any impact on your script, that means they aren’t necessary and should be cut.
Like what you see? Read the rest of our review here.
“When the Bell Jangles” by Dan Harris
Logline: After finding a dead body in her hotel room, a young woman on the run from an abusive relationship covers up her discovery in attempts to remain under the radar.
As fellow writers ourselves, we understand that there’s no such thing as a Final Draft — just the draft that, after your umpteenth cup of coffee, you finally put down to preserve your sanity and say in true Karen-Walker-fashion…
Our third June winner is a perfect example of this. Dan Harris’ horror short “When the Bell Jangles” was previously nominated in its 1st draft iteration. Now on his 3rd draft, Dan is a winner! He took his fellow members’ notes to heart and plopped himself back down in front of his computer. And well, the hard work paid off, Dan!
“When the Bell Jangles” is available for review at Script Mother. Check it out here!
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