Writing with Clabber

Laura PV
By Laura P. Valtorta
Columbia II Chapter
The best thing about filmmaking is the collaboration it requires. Shooting a scene correctly requires an experienced crew – director, cinematographer, lighting specialist, and sound person. Without those elements, the production values suffer. The audience notices distracting mistakes.
Screenwriting is also a team effort. “Workshopping” a screenplay can help, but the best thing is to write with a partner. Clabber and I work well together on screenwriting because we are so different. He has solid ideas. Mine are crazy. He prefers a polished effect. I like to take risks. The differences between us never end.
Clabber worships GOD and DOG. I’m an atheist who can’t abide animals in the house.
Clabber is short; I’m tall.
Clabber loves horror films; I can barely deal with Alfred Hitchcock.
Clabber takes five years to write his horror scripts. I take five months.
Recently Clabber and I sat down to make changes to Quiet on the Set. We only had 90 minutes. Everybody is busy. And Clabber had brought in a co-worker to give a third perspective on the script. Or maybe John was there to protect us from killing each other.
Either way, the meeting went well. I sat back and listened to Clabber’s specific ideas and John’s general thoughts on changing the script. Before that meeting, I was convinced the screenplay was finished. Now I realize that I need to edit. The polishing may take some time.

We’re headed in the right direction.


Laura Puccia Valtorta is the author of three books and the director/ producer of five independent films. She has practiced law in Columbia, SC for 22 years. Her first film, White Rock Boxing, is now available on Amazon Prime. “The Art House,” her latest short film, has been accepted at 12 film festivals (including Indie Grits) and will soon be available on the PBS Show, “Shorts Showcase.”

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