Brynn Simon is an 11th grade student at Neshaminy High School, and Senior Fiction Editor for Howler Lit. Brynn is the author of both An Irish Lullaby, a short-story fiction piece, as well as the adapted screenplay. Both can be read in the Spring 2018 Digital Issue of Howler Literary Magazine.
Featured Artist Q & A:
Q: Who are you? What is this? (Tell us a little bit about yourself and describe your piece)
Brynn: I’m Brynn! I read way too much fiction and drink enough tea to make even Benedict Cumberbatch jealous! I wrote An Irish Lullaby, both story and screenplay. The story depicts a life changing exchange of an old relic, a death, and a birth into power; all viewed from an unsuspected narrator. The story is merely an intro into a much larger one that’s waiting to be discovered.
Q: What is your creative process like? How does your screenwriting process differ from your typical process for writing fiction?
Brynn: My creative process is headphones in, reality out. I tend to write more fiction than nonfiction, but whenever I’m really into what I’m writing (fiction or not) I’ll have my headphones in and will listen to a soundtrack that fits my story. While adapting my story into a screenplay this came in handy more times than I can count. As I had to revisit my original thoughts and ideas for the story when I first wrote it, listening to music really helped me picture my surroundings and hidden details that I had to work into the screenplay and were an oversight in the story itself.
Q: What challenges were you faced with while creating your screenplay? Was there a most-difficult scene to build? A difficult character to write dialogue for?
Brynn: I’ve always been driven to show my story through dialogue, so writing a story with only a handful of spoken lines was challenging but ended up helping me progress as a writer. Needless to say, adapting the setting for the screenplay was not easy. I was constantly reminded to add more detail, to tell the reader everything that’s goes on which goes against the whole “show don’t tell” golden rule we’re taught on day one.
Writing the death scene of the man was also difficult. Death scenes can easily become cheesy and cliché, which is why I completely avoided it in the story, describing his death as “a quick one, with more blood than suffering.” Trying to drag that out without being cheesy but still showing everything and entertaining the reader took more than one attempt.
Q: Are there any other directions you’d like to run with this project? Do you foresee any other creative endeavors, relating to or adapting this project?
Brynn: As of right now, this story has no ending. I’ve been thinking of finishing the story and making it into a dystopian or modern fantasy novel but I’m also working on other stories at the moment. In other words, it would take a lot but I’d definitely consider it. As for seeing the screenplay acted out, I would love for it to happen and wonder how actors or actresses would portray my characters.
Q: How do you see your writing career flourishing in the future, and how would you define a personal, “literary success,” for you?
Brynn: English and creative writing are my focus academically, it’s what I plan on majoring in during college and obtaining a career in later on in life. For me a literary success would mean becoming a published author, traveling the world and meeting the people who love writing (and reading) as much as I do. It would also mean a lot to me that I’ve accomplished what I’ve set my heart on, and that I’ve made the people supporting me proud.