Saturday, August 27, 2011

A Serial By Jen Knox

I just read the first installment of a serial which promises to be great! Jen Knox is a brilliant writer. Her latest venture is posting installments of her non fiction serial on her blog. My friend, screenwriter and filmmaker, Michelle Amor, once told me about how, after so many years of reading screenplays as a screenplay contest judge who has to read hundreds if not thousands of scripts, she developed a test in which she would read the opening line of a film script and would determine immediately whether it was worth continuing. Many directors of development for production companies may thumb through a screenplay to check the format and page count as an early indication of what kind of screenwriter with which they are dealing before finally beginning to read the screenplay itself. Often, they will read the first ten pages and make a judgement on whether to continue or just toss the screenplay in the garbage. Michelle does not wait until the tenth page to decide. After all, a screenplay does not suddenly get good. A screenwriter does not suddenly find talent. A few years ago, I did not know of Michelle's test when I sent her a copy of one of my theater pieces. After reading my play, she informed me of her test and told me that my play had passed the test with flying colors. In fact, she had a copy of it, but she did not have the time to read it all at once so she planned to do it later, but she wanted to at the very least, put my piece through the test. She ended up reading the entire piece right then. I had drawn her in with my opening line and kept her interest all the way through to the end. Nowadays, I will write a play or screenplay all the while keeping Michelle's test in mind. When I read other people's work, I always find myself examining that initial line. I write all this to state that using that test, Jen Knox is able to grab my attention from the initial line of her non fiction entry. I invite all to read this interesting work. It reminds me of the days gone by when so many writers made their mark and money by submitting a few paragraphs and having local or national newspapers and journals print them for readers everywhere to enjoy. Those talented writers grabbed readers' attention and left them anticipating the next issue. Similarly, Jen did so with this story. I can not wait until next week for part two!!

To read the work of the very talented Jen Knox, please log on to:


  1. Thank you for referencing my blog & fiction! I just saw this post and must say, you rock.

    It's awesome that she read your script all in one sitting. That proves the pull of the work! Those first few line are make or break, and it's really not easy to sustain the reader once she's pulled in. Bravo.

  2. Thank you, Jen!! Michelle is truly one of those special talented people I am so blessed to have in my life. She is such a talented screenwriter and filmmaker who I respect tremendously so to impress her with the first piece I ever sent her was a great thrill. Of course as she stated to me, "You know what you did now? By sending me such an amazing script, you've set the bar very high. I will expect only greatness from you." It's great to have those expectations. I hope I can meet them each time. Similarly, Jen, you are such a tremendously talented writer and I am so lucky you entered my life. As I've mentioned to you previously, I am so inspired by you. I truly hope one day I will get a chance to tell you in person what a joy it is to read your work and how much you teach me through them! That is why every chance I get I use Twitter, FB, and this blog to promote your work.