Jonathan Watt (Scriptwriting, 2017)
It was great to see work I had written performed at Circa and turned into a short film by the NZ Film School - an invaluable experience.
Jonathan writes: 'After another year of mindless dollar-scratching I was very happy to be accepted to the MA Scriptwriting class of 2017 where I was finally able to use the creative side of my brain more than once a week again and privileged to have the guidance of both Ken Duncum and Gary Henderson in writing a feature film script as my thesis. Both Ken and Gary were fantastic mentors who forced me out of my comfort zone to keep rewriting and rewriting stuff that I already thought was "good" - the end result of course being better and more importantly; different.
'Simply having a place where you can air your work with a group of writers is what makes the MA so good. This process alone makes you a better writer - thicker-skinned, less precious and maybe even a bit less clichéd.
'The best thing about the MA, however, is that a lot of the stuff you write during the year ends up actually being turned into something. It was great to see work I had written performed at Circa and turned into a short film by the NZ Film School; an invaluable learning experience.
'I am extremely thankful to the course and all involved for giving me an amazing year of writing.'
Bio: Jonathan Watt is a writer and filmmaker from Masterton. He founded Gorse River Pictures with his friend Kieran Charnock, and the pair have written and directed many films together. In 2018, their short film Stranger was screened at festivals around the world including Balinale and Show Me Shorts. They have since produced several webseries and two feature films - Black Shark and Compass.