Gerald Shuler has been a FaithWriters member for 10+ years, entering the Writing Challenge close to 100 times, and posting several dozen time in regular articles. And now, he can add “award-winning” to his list of accomplishments, as a skit he posted on FaithWriters seven years ago was made into a short film, which won several awards at the 2018 Christian Film Festival, including Gerald himself for best writer! Read on to learn more about Gerald, the skit, the award, and the role FaithWriters played.

JOANNE SHER: Congratulations, Gerald! Can you tell me your reaction when you found out the film based on your skit won?Gerry Shuler, A Christian free to use article writer

GERALD SHULER: I’m human… I was thrilled. My wife, though, was even more thrilled so I guess my most memorable reaction was asking myself “How am I going to get my wife unpeeled from the ceiling?”

JOANNE: Can you talk us through the whole process this went through? When did you write the skit? For what purpose? How did the eventual filmmakers find it? Were you involved in the filming process at all?

GERALD: The original skit was written about 30 years ago when I was a youth pastor in need of something for the teens to do. The girl that played the lead part in the very first performance broke down in tears when she realized that her life was just like the character’s life. She accepted the Lord at that moment and then went on with rehearsal. The script is on my profile page (https://www.faithwriters.com/article-details.php?id=126208 ) just the way it was performed 30 years ago.

I had no input in the production so I don’t know the process. All I know is that the producer read my skit on FaithWriters and emailed me to see what it would take to use it for his next movie. He was willing to pay for it but, silly me, I told him all I wanted was full screen credit as the writer. That took me completely out of the production loop.

JOANNE: Still – SO cool! Is it possible to see the film? If so, how and where? What were your thoughts when you saw it?

GERALD: You can see it on Youtube at this address: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VnSXSAedhVQ&t=21s

My thoughts are confusing to me. I’m torn between “Wow… this is really great” to “Wow… how did this do so well?” I’m ashamed to admit that the biggest thrill was seeing my name in the opening credits as the writer.  The thing that impresses me even more, though, is that the skit was ever seen by a producer at all. I owe FaithWriters for that part.

It never would have happened without a site that is so dedicated to Christian writers. I put the skit on the site just so I could get some feedback. I never dreamed it would be seen by a producer. That is the main reason I want this interview seen. Members of FaithWriters needs to know the power of this site to get your writing seen by the right people. The truth is, if I was noticed, then ANY of us can be… IF we put out work out there.

JOANNE: I hope many see this and take the same step you did. So exciting! Tell us about the best writer award the film won, and the organization that gave it.

GERALD: It actually won a lot more awards than I knew about.  This film festival is located in New Jersey and they are dedicated to getting Christian works seen and recognised. I wondered about it saying ‘by Mark Mims’ but then I learned that that meant PRODUCED by Mark Mims. The film has been entered into other competitions but I haven’t heard any results about them.

JOANNE: You will definitely have to let us know about those. Have you written any other skits since? How about other writing?

GERALD: I’m always writing church skits and puppet plays. The only book I have is a children’s book called ‘Lemondrop… the Beginning’. I wish someone would want to make that one a movie! It teaches Christian principles without being a Christian book. I also put my stories in the FaithWriters Challenge. That is what gave me some confidence in calling myself a writer. My grandson wants to grab a camcorder and start producing our own movie. I like the idea.

JOANNE: Fun! Tell us a bit about yourself. What is your profession? How do you fit writing in? How about family?

GERALD: There isn’t much to tell. I’ve preached most of my life (starting when I was eight years old) and worked as a painter, salesman, writer for TV Guide, and whatever else I could find to do. My five kids all live out of state so my life now revolves around spending time with the most wonderful wife anyone could hope to marry. I still write but it is mostly things I have preached that my wife wants in book form so it can change the world (her expectation… not mine).

JOANNE: I am glad your wife is there encouraging you. 🙂 Is there anything else you’d like to add?

GERALD: If it is in your heart to write, then write. It might be great and it might not be but, if you put your work out to be seen then I can assure you… your work will not go unnoticed. Reading your work will be a blessing to others in ways you could never imagine.

JOANNE: That is some great advice. Thanks so much, Jerry, and congratulations again! I look forward to hearing about more of your successes in the future! God bless!

 

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