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American Gem Short Screenplay & Literary Festival
2011 Screenplay Contest

Enter your Short Screenplay, Short Story, Treatment in American Gem Short Screenplay Contest / Literary Festival. 

Winning Screenplay in the American Gem Short Screenplay Contest will be Produced.

Grand Prize Winner / Short Screenplay Gets to Pitch Screenplay to Producers, Studio Executives and Agents. Certificate of achievement awards to the Top 25 scripts and top 3 in each of the other categories.

from script to screen


FilmMakers International Screenwriting Awards
Screenplay Contest Interview

| Winners | Bio | Synopsis | Script Excerpt |



In-Between by Sandra Webb Smith


Sandra Webb Smith
of Knoxville, TN



Sandra Webb Smith

Sandra Webb Smith holds a bachelorís degree in Business Education and has worked in various business settings. She receives inspiration for her writing from normal everyday moments. Sandra grew up in the Deep South (United States) and enjoys screenwriting classes and workshops and meeting with her writing group. She is also a product developer and a dog-lover.


A dejected deaf teen caught between the hearing and non-hearing worlds, seeks acceptance in her new school where she is offered a spot on the rock climbing team, only to be tormented by an egotistical teammate.


Part 1.


I knew I wanted to be screenwriter when........

I became obsessed with reading everything I could to learn about screenwriting. I enjoyed reading about everything from formatting, development of characters and learning how to write for a visual medium such as film.

I know I've succeeded when........ 

I see that a script reader actually "gets" the message that I intended to deliver. Also, I feel a sense of accomplishment to hear that someone who has read my script tells me that they would love to see it as a movie.

My inspiration to write In-Between.....

came from a desire to share a story about the courage, strength, perseverance and acceptance of a teen who faces diversity in the form of a physical challenge. She faces biases but overcomes them and learns to accept herself as others also do.

Part 2.


FilmMakers Magazine: What inspired you to write?

Sandra Webb Smith: Initially, helping others to edit their own writing inspired me to write. I came across a notice for a screenplay competition and was intrigued, so I entered and made it through the first round. I believe that helped motivate me to move forward.

FilmMakers Magazine: Is this your first script and how long did it take you to complete?

Sandra Webb Smith: In-Between is my second feature script, and I spent about six months on the first draft. After getting feedback, I took some comments to heart and edited the story which took a couple more months.

FilmMakers Magazine: Do you have a set routine, place and time management for writing?

Sandra Webb Smith:  I don't have a rigid routine, but I try to find some quiet time everyday to write, plan or think about what I'm working on. I'm a night-owl and I usually feel more creative in the evening. I have a small office at home where I usually work.

FilmMakers Magazine: Do you believe screenplay contests are important for aspiring screenwriters and why?

Sandra Webb Smith: Entering contests was a starting point for me as I was so new to writing, and I hoped to get some exposure as well as encouragement.

FilmMakers Magazine: What influenced you to enter the FilmMakers International Screenwriting Awards / Screenplay Contest?

Sandra Webb Smith: Filmmakers International Screenwriting Awards gives aspiring writers more chances for exposure of their scripts. It has a solid reputation as I learned from reading the positive feedback from previous contestants.

FilmMakers Magazine: What script would you urge aspiring writers to read and why?

Sandra Webb Smith:
I thoroughly enjoyed reading "Bridesmaids" by Annie Mumolo and Kristen Wiig. It flows so well and is very entertaining. I had already seen the movie and compared it to the script, which was noticeably different in places.

FilmMakers Magazine: Beside screenwriting what are you passionate about and why?

Sandra Webb Smith: I'm passionate about family, friends and my dogs. Making the world a safer place and treating all people with respect is important to me.

FilmMakers Magazine: Who is your favorite Screenwriter and Why?

Sandra Webb Smith: Chris Terrio is my favorite screenwriter. He wrote Argo which is one of my favorite movies. I also read the script and was intrigued by his style. I later watched a video interview and was inspired by his humble manner, even though he is immensely talented.

FilmMakers Magazine: Name the director you would love to work with and why?

Sandra Webb Smith: Steven Spielberg would be my choice of a director to work with as he's one of the very best.

FilmMakers Magazine: Name the actor you would love to work with and why?

Sandra Webb Smith: Sandra Bullock has always been a favorite actress and she seems to be very down-to-earth. She could likely play any type of part in most any genre and would also be fun to work with.

FilmMakers Magazine: Any tips and things learned along the way to pass on to others?

Sandra Webb Smith: Getting feedback is important to me whether it's from a professional or a well-read friend. I have used both and found both to be helpful. Everyone has different comments and questions, and it helps to see the story from their perspective, even though the writer may choose to keep their original story line. Also, I have found the internet is full of free screenwriting articles on just about anything.      

FilmMakers Magazine: What's next for you?

Sandra Webb Smith: I'm currently working on another feature drama as well as a TV drama pilot. As these are such different mediums, I feel I must choose only one for now on which to focus.

FilmMakers Magazine: Where will you be five years from now?

Sandra Webb Smith: Hopefully, I will have an agent and five or so scripts completed. I would, of course, be thrilled to see any of my work produced!



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