Writing Process Blog Tour

Slide10

I was invited to a blog tour on writing processes by Rene Gutteridge, my co-author on Never the Bride, Greetings from the Flipside, and Novelizations: How to Adapt Scripts Into Novels. You can check out her process at:  Rene Gutteridge Blog

She was invited by our mutual friend, Andrea Nasfell (Andrea Nasfell’s Blog) a very talented screenwriter of such movies as Moms’ Night Out, Christmas Angel, and Silver Bells.

I decided to join the party, since I hadn’t written a writing blog in a while. Having just finished up the latest draft on my next novel, what better way to take a break than to blog?

1) Who are you?

I am Cheryl McKay in my writing life, Cheryl Price in my married life. I am a wife, daughter, sister, friend, screenwriter, author, teacher, scrapbooker, new spiralizer, and the forgiven child of the Most High King. My husband and I have a ministry together called Finally One and a passion for seeing marriages, not just survive, but thrive.

2) What are you working on?

As I’ve blogged about in the past, Rene Gutteridge and I have been working together on getting my screenplays adapted into novels. We’ve released two of those so far and are about to start work on a third. After we wrote our “How To” book on novelizations, I decided to try my hand at one of my own adaptations. (I far prefer working with Rene, I must say.) But adapting a story very close to my heart and my family’s heart, Song of Springhill, has been its own kind of reward. I hope to release this novel late August or early September 2014. I already released a book of true life interviews earlier this year that grew from my research into the story, called Spirit of Springhill.

Pageflex Persona [document: PRS0000448_00018]

Spirit of Springhill Blog

I look forward to introducing the world to my love story characters in the novel version this fall. Earlier this year, I was hired to write a kids television show. I was also hired to write a series pilot that’s now out there making the rounds to hopefully get set up as a regular show. The one thing you can bet I’m always working on is looking for funding to make Never the Bride, the script version of my novel with Rene. We’re making some great progress, but as always, movie-making takes a lot of time and persistence.

NTB Final Movie Poster    Never the Bride

 

In my free time, my husband and I are producing a web style series called:

Married with Benefits

FINAL MWB Logo

It’s a series of shorts that depict a variety of marital issues that we will use in the future as a springboard for discussions when we public speak at couples’ events.

3) How does your work differ from others of its genre?

I know all writers are told to “write what you know.” This is something I probably do to the extreme. I’ve written my “life story” at least five ways in five different genres. I am very personal about what I write. You will find me somewhere in everything I pen. The reason I do that is I believe my work is more relatable and authentic when I can put myself and my heart (which is sometimes bleeding) into my work. For example, I wrote the screenplay of Song of Springhill over ten years ago. In adapting the novel this year, I ended up adding an entire overarching theme that wasn’t part of the original script based on current questions I have about life, death, and God’s mercies in the midst of painful circumstances. If I’m wrestling with it, chances are, so are other people. I hope by being authentic, others who read (or watch movies) will be touched by my work and helped in some way, at the very least to know someone out there understands how they feel. The other unique thing I’ve been doing for a while is writing both fiction and non-fiction on similar topics.

4) Why do you write what you do?

Like I said, I have a passion for storytelling and the belief that stories can change and heal hearts or even just bring hope and laughter in the midst of a world that is full of challenges. I especially have a desire to reach audiences that are single, losing hope in their wait to find love. So a lot of my stories are romantic comedies that singles can relate to. I believe story is transformative. Getting a chance to write for others who may be changed, touched, helped, or healed through something I wrote is extremely rewarding and not something I take lightly.

5) How does your writing process work?

I am a big planner. I have a blog I wrote about this called Plotting is Better in Color that describes my outlining and brainstorming process. After I finish brainstorming and outlining, I write many drafts before I show the project to some trusted mentors. Then the rewrites begin. I do a lot of drafts before a client will see a project labeled “Draft One”. I love to outline on Post-Its. But if I have to turn in that outline, I type those scene ideas up in treatment form.

When I’m looking for inspiration on setting, time periods, and locations, I enjoy using Pinterest. Check out this link to read more:  Using Pinterest for Writing Inspiration Blog

Sometimes, if I am having trouble with a scene, I act it out. When I was writing the screenplay for The Ultimate Gift and found myself stuck, I visited a cemetery as if I were Jason, wanting to talk to Red’s gravestone to get some things off my chest. It helped inspire me into how Jason might have felt, trying to repair a relationship with someone who was already gone. The exercise got me back to writing.

I find that the writing process is never over. And just like I personally am a work-in-progress, so are any words I put on the page.

The Writing Process Blog Tour continues with a couple of other writers speaking about their processes, Carolyne Aarsen and Donita K. Paul. Their blog entries should be up sometime this week. *

Carolyne Aarsen Blog

Donita K. Paul Blog

* * *

If you are interested in learning more about how to write novelizations, check out our “How To” book (with Rene Gutteridge):

Novelizations – How to Adapt Scripts Into Novels: A Writing Guide for Screenwriters and Authors (Paperback)

Novelizations – How to Adapt Scripts Into Novels: A Writing Guide for Screenwriters and Authors (Kindle Version)

Advertisements

Ever thought about adapting a script into a novel?

100_3901Cheryl & Rene, 2009

Since 2007, I’ve been involved in a new trend that takes scripts and turns them into books. Yes, this is the opposite of normal. Many people have asked me how to do it. There are definitely specific writing techniques to this art form that you won’t find in a book on adaptation. In fact, those “How To” books are teaching the opposite rules than it takes to go from script to book.

Rene Gutteridge and I have taught classes in this writing technique for novelizations and decided to share what we’ve learned through this book.

Pageflex Persona [document: PRS0000035_00015]

Novelizations: How to Adapt Scripts Into Novels

(A Writing Guide for Screenwriters and Authors)

We took 10+ examples from our script to book novelizations, some published, some works-in-progress, to help illustrate how you turn a screenplay into a novel. As a screenwriter, it’s been amazing to see my characters come to life in book form. Having a screenplay come out as a book makes it a lot easier to gain attention for your scripts.

This book is for screenwriters who want to do their own adaptations as well as novelists who want to understand this unique writing format and how both types of writers can get involved in them.

Rene and I first met after Rene was hired to novelize my screenplay from the film, The Ultimate Gift.

TUG poster

Our first novelization that we collaborated on was Never the Bride, based on my screenplay:

Never the Bride

And then our follow up was Greetings from the Flipside, also based on one of my scripts:

Greeting Cover

To order on Amazon CLICK on the Title for Paperback or Kindle:


Novelizations – How to Adapt Scripts Into Novels: A Writing Guide for Screenwriters and Authors (Paperback)

Novelizations – How to Adapt Scripts Into Novels: A Writing Guide for Screenwriters and Authors (Kindle Version)

Here is a description of what you’ll learn from the book:

NOVELIZATIONS: HOW TO ADAPT SCRIPTS INTO NOVELS

A WRITING GUIDE FOR SCREENWRITERS AND AUTHORS

Are you an author who wants to explore the business of adapting screenplays into novels?

Are you a screenwriter who’d like to see your unproduced script written as a novel, to help get your film made?

Are you a screenwriter who wants to adapt your own script into a novel?

This book is for you.

Novelizations used to pump business for existing movies and TV shows, but now a fast-growing trend has publishers contracting authors to pen novel adaptations based on scripts that haven’t been produced—yet. At least until the novel raises awareness about the script and gives it a life of its own. It’s a win-win for all creative writers.

If you are a novelist, you can benefit from learning the craft of adapting scripts into books. You may just end up penning a novelization that will one day be a film. There is an art to this form of adaptation that may differ from starting a novel from scratch.

If you’re a screenwriter who is sitting on a gem of a script, what are you waiting for? We’ll give you tips on how to team up with a novelist. Or you, too, can learn to adapt your screenplay as a novel. Just like screenwriting, there’s a craft to be honed. With the whole story and characters of that script already in place, you’re half way there.

Want to learn the trade secrets of this burgeoning business? Look no further. Using specific, side-by-side examples that compare script pages to novel pages, writing team Cheryl McKay (the screenwriter) and Rene Gutteridge (the novelist) share their experiences, tips, and know-how on adapting scripts into novels. Covering everything from creative technique to collaborative contracts, Novelizations: How to Adapt Scripts Into Novels is an invaluable tool for both screenwriters and novelists to successfully master this highly specialized art form.

RENE GUTTERIDGE is the one of the go-to authors for novelizations. She has written Old Fashioned, Heart of the Country, and Just 18 Summers for Tyndale. CHERYL MCKAY, screenwriter of The Ultimate Gift (which Gutteridge also novelized), has worked with Gutteridge on the novelizations for her scripts, Never the Bride for Random House and Greetings from the Flipside for B&H Publishing. They won a Carol Award (ACFW) for Best Women’s Fiction for Never the Bride.

Adobe Photoshop PDF