The Challenge and Rewards of “Keep Writing”

This past Fall, I volunteered to teach an elective at my son’s junior high school. I briefly considered teaching web design and marketing (my work for the last 15 years), but that just seemed like too much work. If I was going to do this, I wanted it to be fun, so I decided to go back to my “roots” and teach screenwriting and filmmaking.

Screenplay image

Preparing for the class, I reopened the book Screenplay: The Foundations of Screenwriting by my late dear friend and mentor, Syd Field. On the first page of the best-selling book, he had written: “Keep writing.” Although he probably wrote that in everyone’s book, since he was a friend, it hit differently. I had stopped writing… creative writing, anyway. I have actually been voraciously writing – just educational content, course scripts, blog posts, and non-fiction books. Creative writing, however, had stalled.

During the last 15 years, I have been busy. I’ve raised (and continue to wrangle) four children, ran a web agency, sold a web agency, and then created and taught course content for WP Care Market and GoDaddy. Now that my littlest is in school, I dared to think; Could I return to creative writing?

While teaching that Jr. High class, reworking my way through Screenplay, and being challenged by Syd’s words, I pulled out one of my old scripts, Camp Bonfire. The film is the story of a preteen girl who gets the opportunity to go back in time (1998) to the summer camp of her late mother. Considering I had written this script before becoming a mother, it needed a good rewrite.

The original concept resonated deeper now, with two of my children being young girls and one of them now a preteen herself. The script became, in many ways, a love letter to them. When I finished the rewrite, I knew it had potential.

Prying open the door to my former career in Hollywood elicited an odd feeling. Much like when you go to your high school reunion, some things are familiar, some different, and then there are those uneasy memories. What struck me in returning to this medium was a very active and promising screenplay contest scene that wasn’t there before. In curiosity, I submitted Camp Bonfire to Screencraft’s notable screenplay contest for Family Features.

Today, Screencraft announced that my script has made the final cut. Out of 500 screenplays, Camp Bonfire is in the top 10 and will be shared with literary reps and producers. The winner will be announced on April 17th (a day before my birthday 😉 ).

While this is an honor and validation, this isn’t my first rodeo. I know getting a screenplay produced isn’t easy. Yet, this is a significant step forward. All in all, this has been an encouragement that the creative writing inside me is not lost. This feedback has inspired me to dig out more of my screenplays from my days at USC and start new concepts and exciting stories.

What I love most about the journey back to this medium is that it began with volunteering to teach 13-year-olds the art of screenwriting and Syd Field’s paradigm. As the quote goes, “It is by teaching that we teach ourselves.” Whether this road leads to winning a top screenplay competition or whether it’s a nod to how motherhood has improved me, I needed the reminder to “keep writing.”

Kristina Romero

With a decade of experience in Hollywood and over a decade in the business world, Kristina has developed a passion for helping others tell their own stories. As a website designer bringing companies online to a coach assisting business owners in crafting a better business. View more about Kristina's latest projects at or