Henry Tjernlund

is creating Screenwriting and short films.




per month


All my life I have enjoyed watching TV and movies. Meanwhile, my imagination produced its own shows and films. In my youth, before I began writing for TV and film, I wrote literary short stories. I was told by fellow members of a writing group that my stories had a cinematic quality to them. I then got part way through film school before life took me other directions (traveling, work, volunteering, marriage, etc.). A couple decades later, I returned to filmmaking - I helped out on independent and student film projects and I continued writing screenplays. I was looking forward to bringing my own films to life. Then something happened which put me on disability and my income now puts me at slightly below the poverty line. So, I'm in a month to month survival situation.

There are some things I can no longer do, but I can still write. And I write a lot! I currently have about 10 feature film scripts and TV pilots, and 20 short film scripts. Unfortunately, I have no financial means to produce these feature films or TV shows. But with a little help, I would be able to make some very entertaining short films.

My most pressing issue is that my car is out of service. The engine is good but there are issues with the exhaust system, brakes, and tires. I have to burden others with taking me shopping and I am dependent on rides from a medical van service to get to doctor appointments. With a reliable car, I can be independent again. I could actively participate in local film projects and get back to making some of my own. I would be able to attend meet-and-greets for cast and crew that are held in the city, do location scouting and participate in the local screenwriters group.

The short film projects themselves can sometimes be funded by crowd funding campaigns. However, I need a body of work so I can show donors what I can do. I can't use my film school work as it was shot on actual film. You know, the stuff with sprocket holes. After a bunch of moves over the decades, I don't know where those reels of film are. So, I need to create a new body of work for fundraising purposes.

That brings me to equipment. I have collected some old items like an analog audio pre-amp field mixer. I have a boom mic on an improvised painter's pole. I also have a factory refurbished DSLR camera which can shoot video. I lucked into some used photo lighting gear for lighting equipment. I have been shooting scenes for a short project but I can only afford to film 2-3 scenes a year. I hope to finish this year.

If lack of money wasn't such an issue I could be putting out film after film after film after film. My main hope is to sell a feature screenplay or TV series teleplay. But one of the roads to getting picked up by an agent is having made my own films, especially ones that win awards at film festivals. Submission to film festivals costs money. Several scripts have done well in screenwriting contests (listed below), but there are submission fees. Protecting a script costs money - scripts should be registered with either Writers Guild of America or the Library of Congress before showing to others. Since I don’t have the money for registration, I am unable to share my compelling screenplays with anyone.

If I can get several films “in the can,” as they say, this would increase my chance of getting crowd funding. But I need a jump start. So, once again, here is what I would be so grateful for –

  1. Get my car back on the road.
  2. Complete several short film shoots.
  3. Get more scripts protected.
  4. Enter protected scripts into writing contests.
  5. Enter short films into film festivals.
  6. Get an agent.
  7. Sell some scripts.

Here is a list of my scripts which have done well in contests.

WHAT YOU KNOW (crime thriller feature)
[2015 ScreenCraft Action & Thriller screenplay contest semi-finalist (top 5%)]

QUESTERS (medieval fantasy feature, co-written)
[2014 PAGE Awards quarter-finalist (top 10%)]

SMALL BLUE (science fiction feature)
[2015 Scriptapalooza Science Fiction screenplay contest quarter-finalist (top 20%)]
[Zoetrope 1 of 3 highest reviewed screenplays for the month of Nov. 2014]

MECHANITY (science fiction, TV pilot) (aka UNITY)
[2015 ScreenCraft Pilot Launch teleplay contest quarter-finalist. (top 20%)]

SICKLE MOON (kung-fu horror feature)
[2015 ScreenCraft Horror screenplay contest quarter-finalist (top 20%)]

Here are some literary short stories which sold before turning to screenwriting.

HARD PORT, (science fiction short)
[2004 PARSEC Short Story Contest 2rd place winner.]
[Published in Triangulation 2004, science fiction and fantasy anthology

EXHIBIT 628 (science fiction horror short)
[Published in Triangulation 2005, science fiction and fantasy anthology.]

FRESH (science fiction horror short)
[Published in Escape Velocity 2008#2 science fiction anthology.]

NOCTE FINEM (science fiction novelette, aka THE SEVENTH ECLIPSE adapted as a script)
[Published in Triangulation 2012: science fiction and fantasy anthology.]

ORDERED PAIR (science fiction short)
[2010 PARSEC Short Story Contest finalist.]
[Published in GlassFire online magazine, 2013 summer issue.]
[2014 Pushcart Award nominee.]

QUEST FOR SLEEPING HANDSOME (co-written medieval youth fantasy novel, pen-name Henry T. Lund)
[Published by Triplicity Publishing, 2014-2016]


Henry Tjernlund

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