Queens Filmmaker Offers Screenwriting Advice


Tracey Sayre discusses the screenwriting process.


The Queens Council on the Arts will offer a screenwriting workshop as part of its writing LAB initiative on Sept. 20 in Astoria.

To teach the class, the council has invited screenwriter and producer Tracy Sayre to present an early draft of a campy horror movie that she wrote.

Sayre has invited other film directors and producers to sit in on the reading and criticize the work along with the class. New screenwriters and filmmakers are encouraged to attend and hear actors perform a read through of the 90-minute screenplay.

At the LAB event, attendees will have the opportunity to listen to the directors and producers on-hand as they give feedback to Sayre and guide the nascent writer through the next draft. All the while, attendees will learn the development process of writing a screenplay.

The event will run from 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. on Sept. 20 at the Queens Council on the Arts’ office, located at 37-11 35th Ave. Astoria. The office’s entrance is on 37th Street. Admission is $10.

Sayre, an Astoria resident, is an award-winning screenwriter and founder of Writers Work, an organization that helps writers develop their craft, career and community.

She states on the Writers Work website, “I started Writers Work in 2013 when I was feeling stuck. I wanted to meet industry professionals and connect with other writers. I researched conferences in New York City, but everything seemed too formal, too crowded and too expensive. If I was going to get what I wanted, I knew I would have to make it myself.”

“Writers Work provides writers with the support and connection they need to tell the stories inside of them,” Sayre has said during her workshops. “I love coming up with fun, innovative workshops and finding the perfect speakers to inspire and motivate.”

During her workshops, Sayre provides advice on story, consolidation, tech support on screenwriting programs and motivation.

Sayre’s short film, Lily + Mara, of which she is the screenwriter and producer, premiered at this year’s 35th annual Rhode Island International Film Festival. The novelist, blogger, screenwriter and teacher is currently developing three feature-length scripts for production.

The Queens Council on the Arts’ LAB aims to create an environment for thoughtful feedback and engage artists who have stagnated creatively and provide them with opportunities to grow as writers.

The LAB bills its initiative as a place to for artists to “gather portfolio reviews, collaboration, critiques of works-in-progress and networking.” The group states on its website that “it provides artists with a unique opportunity to share [their] creative process with fellow artists and new audiences and to give [them] valuable feedback and insights with which to hone [their] work.”

The Queens Council on the Arts was founded in 1966 to foster and develop the arts in Queens County and support individual artists and arts organizations in presenting their cultural diversity for the benefit of the community.

Reach Jon Cronin at 718-357-7400 x125, jcronin@queenstribune.com or @JonathanSCronin.

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