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Austin Film Festival’s 25 Screenwriters to Watch in 2017, Presented by MovieMaker

Austin Film Festival’s 25 Screenwriters to Watch in 2017, Presented by MovieMaker


Kate Nowlin

Who: Actress who branched out to writing and producing with her feature Blood Stripe (2016); currently co-writing and co-producing a limited series titled Lemon Shark.

How did you break in or get your start in screenwriting?

In 2007, I was the victim of a violent attack, and was introduced to the world of criminal defense in New York City. I had a friend who worked as a public defender in the Bronx who helped me navigate my way through my case. After that experience, I felt compelled to write a story representing the other side of the story. I needed to understand the other side—the side of the perpetrator—in order to get perspective and move forward. That became the script for The Boogie Down, the first thing I ever co-wrote, with my husband and my public defender friend.

What are some of the biggest lessons you’ve learned?

Don’t wait. What doesn’t come wasn’t meant for you. Give yourself the job you’ve always wanted. Abandon perfection—you’ll get a lot more done.

What’s the hardest thing you’ve ever had to write?

I think loglines are hard to write. Encapsulating what an entire thing is about in one or two sentences is deceptively difficult.


1. Jono Matt and Glen Powell 2. Ryan Piers Williams 3. Etta Devine and Gabriel Diani 4. Lena Khan 5. Trey Selman 6. Tracy Oliver 7. Justin Lader and Charlie McDowell 8. Clint Bentley and Greg Kwedar 9. Damir Konjicija and Dario Konjicija 10. Juanjo Moscardó Rius 11. Ben Snyder and Ari Issler 12. Kyle Bugg 13. Jimmy Mosqueda 14. Michael Noonan 15. Geeta Malik 16. Josh Barkey 17. Nicholas Verso 18. Minhal Baig 19. Henry Jones 20. Kevin Arbouet 21. Megan Park 22. Wes Brown 23. Louisiana Kreutz 24. Kate Nowlin 25. Elizabeth Guest

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  1. Conspicuous by their absence are such stellar screenplay writers as Buck Henry (“The Graduate”), Robert Downey, Sr. (“Putney Swope”), Penny Lane (Nuts”)and Ben and Dan Barnz.

  2. Congratulations to all these writers! Knowing Ben Synder, who has worked with me on a scripts, I want to particularly congratulate him and Ari Lssler for achieving this endeavor in the ‘Storyworld’ of Cinema!

    Spiderwood Productions / Tommy G Warren, Writer, Producer.

  3. James Mayfield says:

    Very inspiring stuff. Loved to learn how these guys and gals got their big breaks, especially those who had little to no contact in LA. Sort of inspiring, and it kind of makes you forget, if only for a moment, that many screenwriters work less than minimum wage. There’s hope!

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