Coffee with Creatives: Boy Turns Into Dog

Edward_PomerantzEdward Pomerantz taught me screenwriting.

I took his workshop two or three times while working through the Creative Writing Program at Columbia University when I was there. Eddie helped me adapt my first published short story into what would become my first film, Over Easy. That film wouldn’t have been a success, and I may not have “caught the bug” after making it, if I didn’t spend an entire semester workshopping the adaptation with Eddie and my classmates. His passion for writing and, more than that, about authentic storytelling, is infectious. I was very glad that he agreed to come on the podcast.

This episode was a pleasure to record. Eddie has had a long and varied career as a screenwriter, novelist, playwright, and teacher. He also recently directed his first film, La Comida, which has so far played at four film festivals.

Topics we cover in the conversation include:

  • The necessity of having a clear reason for telling each story you sit down to write
  • The importance of only taking writing assignments you can make your own
  • The parallel importance of not looking down at an assignment that can be made your own with a little thought and consideration
  • Why Eddie believes Robert McKee ruined screenwriting
  • The differences between writing something and directing something
  • Listening to the needs of the story, rather than trying to force something to happen
  • “Keeping the ball in the air” as long and as effectively as possible
  • Bringing an element of danger into your work
  • And much, much more

Beatriz De La Cruz stars in La Comida, a funny and poignant short Written and Directed by Eddie.
Beatriz De La Cruz (La Comida)
It’s basically a crash course in how to leave it all on the table, in service of whatever it is that your story needs. I hope you like the interview.

Please feel free to drop a note in the comments if you have anything to add, or have any follow-up questions you’d like to ask.

You can find more about Eddie at his site: http://edwardpomerantz.com/.

Coffee with Creatives is also available on iTunes.

Hometown Battle: Which City Will Win?

We’re running a friendly competition today over at The Videoblogs.

Are you ready for battle?

Here’s the deal. Today, from now until midnight, we will tally the total number of donations from the following hometowns of our team members:

  • Cranston, RI. My hometown, and the eventual winner of this contest.
  • Brooklyn, NY. Rebecca’s hometown.
  • Pittsburgh, PA. The hometown of Associate Producers Zach and Alex.
  • Pell City, AL. The hometown of actor Phoebe Allegra.
You don't really want to mess with Cranston.
You don’t really want to mess with Cranston. (From: Over Easy, my first film).

You can contribute here. The rules:

  1. Each contribution represents one point. One dollar counts as much as one hundred for the competition.
  2. The hometown with the most points at midnight wins. We’ll announce the winning town on Tuesday.
  3. The prize for winning is bragging rights, and exclusion from…
  4. The punishment for losing is that all three “losers” from The Videoblogs team have to records a videoblog while holding a sign that says “Cranston Rules” (because Cranston is going to win). They also have to admit out loud that “Cranston Rules”.

Yes, I am already playing a little dirty with all the Cranston boasting. But for now I have the mic, so…

Are you guys in, or what?

All you have to do to participate is to contribute.

We really want to show all of you the film. So why not contribute what you can, TODAY, and at the same time show us which hometown really rules? 🙂 A download of The Videoblogs is only $10, or grab a DVD for $20.

Here’s an individual incentive, for first-movers…

I will mail a signed paperback copy of my book, AND a DVD of Sex and Justice, to the first contributor from EACH hometown. Respond to a Facebook post from a member of our team with #VideoblogsFilm so that we can identify you.

Okay. Now let’s show them who rules, (Cranston).