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A Conversation with the Creative Force Behind the Compelling Screenplay - Lynn Elliott's Journey Thr

In the realm of cinematic storytelling, we step into the vivid landscapes of 'Alta California,' guided by the wordsmith Lynn Elliott. As we embark on this exclusive interview, Elliott, the talented writer behind the screenplay, invites us into a world where narratives unfold like tapestries. With an insightful look into the inspirations, challenges, and the creative process, join us in traversing the literary journey crafted by Lynn Elliott for 'Alta California.'

American Dream Screen : Every screenplay has a unique journey from concept to completion. Can you take us through the moment or experience that ignited the spark for this story, and how it evolved into the screenplay we see today?

Lynn Elliott : I made a vimeo explaining how an immigrant to the USA from Wales came to write about the clash between the Spanish and the indigenous peoples of California. ( PASSWORD: PortNewydd4747?

American Dream Screen : Screenwriting allows for creative exploration. Can you share an instance where the narrative took an unexpected turn during the writing process, and how did this spontaneous development contribute to the depth of your screenplay?

Lynn Elliott : Throughout, I have struggled with a script that is both historical and fictional. As the script developed, I struggled, wanting to focus more on the existential crisis of the central, fictional character and how he responds to historical facts.

American Dream Screen : Collaboration is integral in bringing a screenplay to life on screen. Could you share a memorable experience of working with a director, producer, or actor, and how their input influenced and enriched the script?

Lynn Elliott : Unfortunately, although my feature script has won 75 awards at this writing, I still have no agent or manager representing it. The only collaboration, if it can be called that, is professional, constructive, knowledgeable criticism I have received. Unfortunately, not all has been that.

American Dream Screen : Dialogue is a powerful tool in screenwriting. How did you craft the distinctive voices of your characters, and can you share a line or moment from your screenplay that you are particularly proud of?

Lynn Elliott : The true power of dialog is in the subtext, the “want” of the character as he confronts the antithetical “want” of another.

Serra hears that, on Captain Felipe de Neve’s orders, Paco Palido, a mixed heritage, unbaptized scout, will visit the Chumash alone the next morning replies:

SERRA: I won’t be here in the morning. Do you think I wait for authorization from Captain de Neve while this—

PACO: Say it! This heathen who remains unbaptized! Whose mother was a savage, a whore whose soul burns in the everlasting fires of your Christian Hell. Eternal damnation. Say it!

American Dream Screen : The life of a screenwriter can be filled with highs and lows. Can you describe a moment of doubt or a challenging period during the writing process, and what strategies did you use to overcome these obstacles and keep your creative spirit alive?

Lynn Elliott : It is a challenging life. Not being acknowledged, or confronted with a thoughtless critique can cause despair. Solution? As Samuel Beckett says

"Ever tried. Ever failed.

No matter.

Try Again.

Fail again. Fail better."

American Dream Screen : As you look back on your journey as an independent screenplay writer and the creation of this unique script, what do you feel is the most significant lesson or insight you've gained about the art of storytelling and filmmaking that you would like to share with aspiring writers and filmmakers?

Lynn Elliott : Believe in yourself. Believe in your creation. You are going to meet obstacles. Just pick yourself up, brush yourself down, and press on!

As we bid farewell to this literary journey, Lynn Elliott leaves us with an enduring appreciation for the artistry of storytelling. The pages of 'Alta California' not only capture moments in time but reflect the timeless power of narrative. It's an ode to the written word and a glimpse into the boundless imagination of a writer whose tales will continue to echo in the hearts of those who embark on the journey crafted by Lynn Elliott.

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