Caterina Colzi is a rising senior at New Trier High School in Winnetka, IL, a suburb of Chicago. A talented writer, her work has been awarded and published by the Young Authors Fiction Festival. Caterina realized her love of screenwriting during quarantine.
We had the pleasure of having Caterina in our four-week summer intensive Online High School Screenwriters Workshop. Caterina, who also plays the piano and is a competitive ice skater, kicks off our blog series highlighting students from our summer workshops. Read on to learn about Caterina’s experience in the program.
What part of the world are you in?
I’m in North America (specifically the United States).
What’s your hometown?
Rome, Italy. I was born there and grew up there but right now I’m living in Chicago, Illinois (have been living here for 3 years now).
What drew you to apply to the Online High School Screenwriters Workshop?
I’ve just recently discovered my passion for screenwriting, and during quarantine, I started a project and learned how to do screenwriting through Googling and YouTube videos. Of course, since I had no real experience, I decided to take an online class in order to learn more about screenwriting.
Share a favorite moment from the workshop so far.
I loved practicing pitching my story ideas to my classmates and I also loved the writing process of the short story we wrote for the course. My top favorite moment was our 5 minute interviews. We had to interview and get to know our partner and it was really interesting because I learned a lot about my partner. This activity taught me that you can’t judge someone or claim to know someone without having gotten to know them. I think the interview opened my mind a lot for character development because in life there are a lot of experiences that might lead a character (or a person) to be the way they are. A lot of experiences impact the type of person you become in life.
Please describe the writing assignments and workshop sessions with the instructor.
We do video meetings 1-2 times a week and basically consist of 2 hours of work and lecture. We get to participate throughout and ask questions and share our ideas. It’s very casual and laid back, which I like because it doesn’t feel super strict like it does at school. We also get weekly assignments which are usually videos that we have to watch and then we will get an assignment that we need to submit by the end of the week.
Talk about the benefits of taking this course online.
The benefits are that I have a lot of time to work on my assignment since we don’t have class every single day and also it’s great because I can meet with my instructor online by booking a one to one meeting and I can get feedback whenever I want.
“This program taught me that writing isn’t just writing your script, it also consists of a lot of preparation beforehand. Overall this program prepared me to create my own working routine with writing and it also helped me understand what type of writer I am.”
How does this course prepare students who would like to write for film and television?
This program taught me that writing isn’t just writing your script, it also consists of a lot of preparation beforehand. Overall this program prepared me to create my own working routine with writing and it also helped me understand what type of writer I am. Because of all the feedback I got from students and instructors, this program overall made me a better writer. Because of all that I have learned, now I consider myself a much better writer than I was when I had first started. Before the program I felt really lost but now I definitely feel more confident because I have a better and deeper understanding of screenwriting which helped me strengthen the screenplays I’ve made.
What is the foundation you received?
This program didn’t entirely “teach me how to write” because there is no single rule for writing, but it helped me bring out the writer in me. This program helped me more with movie analyzing and helped me understand the steps to writing and organizing your work so that you can successfully write your story.
“This program didn’t entirely “teach me how to write” because there is no single rule for writing, but it helped me bring out the writer in me.”
Do you have any advice for any students interested in taking this workshop?
It might seem very intimidating at first, but it’s actually very worth it. I met really great people that I feel like I can count on in the future to get feedback for my writing. My one piece of advice is to do it and don’t think back. This workshop is so great and has opened up my mind a lot to what writing truly is and I really recommend it for students who want a deeper understanding and want to improve as writers.
The fall 2020 application for the Online High School Screenwriters Workshop is open until September 18, 2020.