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Submitted by visitors to this website

Posted by Lucy

June 13th 2011

I am studying A-Level Film Studies at college. Last week we watched a documentary called 'The Hollywood Machine' in which you spoke about your script for The Gladiator, I found it really interesting! I am - and have been for a few years - very interested in a career as a screenwriter for feature films. Can you tell me some ways of possibly succeeding in the industry? Also, do you believe it is completely neccessary and important to go to University and study Film further to get a degree? Will this be a benefit for me when trying to find work in the industry? Or could I rely on finding work with many production companies, working my way up the ladder and gaining contacts etc? Because I'm feeling quite negative towards University at the moment and I'm also hoping to travel after my A-Levels. I just don't want to make any decisions I might regret! Any advice you have would be much appreciated!

William Nicholson responded:

My own view is that it isn't necessary to have a degree to get work as a screenwriter. However, it's a hard thing to achieve. Most people I know have got in by working for production companies, at first in lowly positions, then as script readers, and so on up; which gives the double benefit of teaching you what works and doesn't in scripts, and getting you contacts. Such jobs are themselves hard to get, of course. It does rather come down to talent and persistence. You get good as a screenwriter by watching a lot of films, writing a lot of screenplays, getting a lot of criticism, and getting better. Some uni courses will help you at this, but they won't at all guarantee you entry to the business. Most writers when starting out reckon on doing a day job to pay the bills (and give insight into the world of others, that you need to be a writer). Once you're submitting screenplays to film companies, they neither know nor care if you've got a degree. It all comes down to the quality of the work.

Posted by Afjal

June 9th 2011

More of an enquiry than a question, but hope the reply is one that I'm hoping to hear as it would be great news. I'm a big fan of your 'The Wind On Fire" trilogy, and have been ever since I read them a few years ago now. I wish to read them again, but hard copies isn't one that would be suitable right now, especially as I read at night most of the time, as that's the only time I get time to read, and consequently I use my phone to read books as there's light from my phone, and plus I like to take advantage of the fact that technology allows us to do so now. I was therefore wondering whether an ebook version of the trilogy is due to be released, and if so, then a possible date I could look forward to perhaps? Thank You! Afjal.

William Nicholson responded:

There will be ebooks of my trilogies - the details are still being negotiated, apparently - and I'm told this means it will be some months before they're available. But it will happen.

Posted by Alexandra Stephens

June 7th 2011

I am currently reading - and thoroughly enjoying - The Secret Intensity of Everyday Life, and look forward to reading the sequel in due course. As someone with numerous connections to Downside, I cannot help but wonder if the rector of Edenbridge is based on Dom Martin Salmon (RIP) ???

William Nicholson responded:

No, no connection at all; though in a strange way I think you can trace many of the philosophical and moral themes back to my Downside influences. Not orthodox Catholic any more, needless to say, but that pursuit of truth and that puzzle over the nature of goodness - very Downside. I hope you enjoy the second book. There's a third on the way.

Posted by Iftekhar

June 5th 2011

Hello! I want to watch 'the March' I haven't found that movie anywhere. Can you plz point to some source of it. Thanks.

William Nicholson responded:

I'm afraid it's never been made available by the BBC, who own the rights.

Posted by Danny

June 3rd 2011

Are you going to turn The wind on fire into a movie? I would love it even more if it were a movie. Thanks, Danny

William Nicholson responded:

No plans at present. I'd love it too. But I need a film company to decide to do it...

Posted by Perdita Formentelli

June 2nd 2011

Dear Sir, I am a French student currently doing a master degree in English medieval literature at La Sorbonne, and I am writing my mémoire about the renewal of symbolism in the youth literature - which most often revives medieval themes and symbolisation - as an answer to the deconstructionism current that one can find in contemporary literature (cf. Philip Roth, Beigbeder...). In my work, I am mainly concentrating on your trilogy "Wind on Fire", as well as on Pullman and J.K.Rowling's works. This year, I am also part of a French teacher exchange program, which explains why I am currently living in Adelaide, South Australia. While living there, I have been confronted to the Aboriginal culture and, quite amazed, I've found many similarities between their spirituality and the one that you gave to the Manth people and their ancestors. Is there any chance that you were somehow influenced in your great work by the Aboriginal way of thinking and culture? Thank you very much for your time and talent, Ms Perdita

William Nicholson responded:

I too am amazed to hear this. No, I know nothing of Aboriginal spiritual culture. I'm well informed about many spiritual traditions, but that one I have missed. I suppose it's possible that some part of it has reached me via another route. After all, nothing is ever made up.