Screenwriting

I have a few television projects in the works. Actually, while most of my published work is prose (essays, flash fiction, novels), I really think in scenes and dialogue. When I structured chapters for Stagecraft, I thought of them in chunks as longer scenes. And all the description of setting or characters’ reactions was just me filling in the blanks around what characters were saying to each other.

I’m including the one sheets for them below for a few reasons. First, I want to let readers know the other mediums I’m working in.* Second, I want aspiring writers to see what good one sheets look like. It’s the same reason why I posted my query letter for North Shore / South Shore. I wrote a good one. I got over 10-15 replies from agencies wanting either partial or full manuscripts. And I got representation from it. And finally, all of these projects have been discussed in meetings with managers and producers. So I might as well float them in the universe of the interwebz some more. You never know when a major producer is just surfing the ‘net.

In fall of 2017, I wrote Soccer Domme. I entered this teleplay in the Austin Film Festival and it received some glowing comments:

“I love the family dynamics, the church, the stress of the health issues mixed with parenting. The suburbia of it all, juxtaposed with the S&M scene is wonderful. Kate and Dante have great chemistry as screen partners, and would be a ton of fun to follow on their adventures.”

I’m really proud of this pilot. The script came to me so quickly and I loved spending time with the characters. The premise was borne out of an anxiety that I have about death. I’m always worried that something will happen to my husband and one day, while I was driving, I had this weird fantasy that I would become a dominatrix if I had to provide for my family. Of course, I was like…”Whoa! Crazy imagination much?” But anxiety will do that to you.

When I shared this premise with Danielle, my writing partner for North Shore South Shore’s pilot, she was like “I love it. But…is C.K. okay? He’s not sick or anything right?”

Soccer Domme

by Kristin Sample

Genre: dramedy, 1-hour, single camera

Logline: When Kate Wright’s perfect life comes crashing down with news of her husband’s failing health, an opportunity from dungeon owner Dante provides an unorthodox solution: pro-domme. Kate becomes “Katerina,” supports her family, and even starts to like her new career. But Kate soon finds that her clients aren’t the only ones in chains.

Synopsis: KATE WRIGHT has the ideal life. With a wonderful marriage, two great kids, and plenty of money, Kate spends her free time volunteering for PTA, singing in the church choir, and drumming her body tight at CrossFit. However, when Kate’s husband SEAN is diagnosed with cancer, the life they’ve built is upended. Treatments don’t work and Sean moves to hospice. To complicate matters further, Sean’s company cuts him off and Kate is tasked with supporting her family.

Enter DANTE. He’s a bisexual man who dabbles in drag but only wears cisgender clothes to visit his dying mother ALBERTA. Kate and Dante share an unexpected but close friendship. What started as polite hellos at hospital vending machines became a mutual support system. And Dante reveals the perfect solution to Kate’s financial problems: dominatrix.

Dante owns and operates a high-end dungeon. When a wealthy client wants a domme who fits Kate’s description, Dante sees an opportunity. Mostly benign stuff—spanking, foot fetish—Dante assures her. Kate is appalled at the suggestion. But after a confrontation about owed tuition at her children’s school, she realizes she needs fast money. Domme work is lucrative, safer than she thinks, and there’s no intercourse. And most importantly, Dante has her back.

Over the course of the series, we see Kate navigate this new world…and start to like her new self. But her double life provides a host of conflicts both internal and external. And, at times, Dante definitely does not have her back. Will Kate find empowerment in this new world? Or is it delusional to think that her clients are the only ones in chains?

Soccer Domme is Weeds meets Fifty Shades of Grey. Transmedia components could include: Snapchats with Dante, Kate’s mommy blog, “Katerina’s” tinyletter, and interviews with real dommes. Audiences will find the Wright family endearing and relatable and will be titillated by Kate’s new career as a prodomme. Using both Kate’s and Dante’s stories, Soccer Domme challenges conventional conceptions of gender, sexuality, morality, and what it means to be “normal.”

 

I’ve also written a pilot based on my first novel, North Shore / South Shore.  I wrote it with Danielle Evenson (THE NEW ADVENTURES OF OLD CHRISTINE). Here’s the one sheet for NS/SS. 

North Shore South Shore

By Kristin Sample and Danielle Evenson

Based on the Novel by Kristin Sample

Logline: Kylie Baines is everything a twenty-something wants to be: bright, attractive, and about to takeover Long Island’s most powerful crime family.

Synopsis: Kylie has a keen business sense—too keen for her own good. Barely old enough to drink, she runs the hottest club in Queens—the Loose Moose. She’s brilliant at it.  Even though her plan is to get out of the family business (she’s been accepted into one of the hardest writing programs on the East Coast), running a New York nightclub comes second nature to her.  She can do it better than anyone else, AND she can do it legally. This is helpful since The Moose is the front for the Baptiste family’s under the table operations.

Just as she’s about to commit to a clean life and a possible rekindled romance with her high school sweetheart, Kylie’s job description expands big time. Kylie’s uncle, Long Island’s public enemy number one, is arrested for a series of charges…including murder. How long can Kylie, her wayward cousins, and mysterious family associate Diablo keep Denis Baptiste’s empire afloat? It all depends on Kylie’s brain and nerve.

By the end of the pilot, Kylie orchestrates her ailing uncle’s house arrest so he can await trial in comfort, navigates Baptiste family politics, and confronts the man who seeks to take Uncle Denis down—his own son Assistant District Attorney Brice Baptiste.  She even manages to throw a party for her old friends, keep her cousin Colette from too much debauchery, and revive a romance with high school sweetheart Matt Tracy.

Over the course of the season, Denis Baptiste’s health worsens as the drama of the trial builds. We follow Kylie as secrets of the family unravel and her role in the scandal that could bring them down becomes clear. By the season finale, Denis’s death leaves the family business on shaky ground. Kylie angles to take her place as leader because she knows no one else can do it.

And Kylie realizes…she loves it.

To complicate matters further, Kylie falls in love with Matt Tracy, the North Shore’s most eligible bachelor. She knows it’s going nowhere but she is intoxicated by the nostalgia. However, Matt’s reappearance sends Kylie’s life into an emotional tailspin. The Tracys and the Baptistes have hated each other for a long time. Long Island’s Romeo & Juliet will have their work cut out for them if they want to change the ending of their story.

Throughout the course of the series, Kylie evolves from a fresh-faced co-ed to a strong, complex woman who lives life on her own terms. North Shore South Shore is Gossip Girl meets The Sopranos. It is a Long Island family saga at its best.

Similar shows: Revenge, The Sopranos, Empire

 

*All of my projects are registered with the Writer’s Guild of America. North Shore South Shore is copyrighted material.