On Episode 350 (that’s a whole lotta talking!) of the MARKWHO42 UNIVERSE podcast, I had the chance to speak with Mark and Vicky about writing movies, comics, and books. We also got into geek culture, some hot social issues, discussions about why writers fail, and a few exclusives may or may not be divulged… just saying.
Jaimie Engle secures film production and novelization for “Just Jake”
Satellite Beach, Florida, December 13th, 2022 – After ten years navigating the world of independent publishing, local writer Jaimie Engle took a huge risk with a monster payoff. In 2021, she officially paused her publishing house, geared toward upper elementary and middle grade books, to pursue a career in screenwriting, a profession comprised less than 30% by women. She wrote and sold her first feature film, Just Jake, a holiday romantic comedy in June 2022 to True Brand Entertainment’s Executive Producer Brian Bird. The film, shot in Colorado Springs, CO, will release on UpTV Faith & Family Network and Super Chanel Heart & Home in 2023.
“When I was a little girl, I recorded The Wizard of Oz and wrote down all the dialogue,” shared Engle, who began writing short stories in third grade. “At the time, I was fascinated with films, watching the same ones on repeat, with a dream to work in the movie business someday. I never thought I would see that dream come true!”
Just Jake is an uplifting story about a country music singer (played by Rob Mayes) who returns home after major writer’s block, falls back in love with his high school sweetheart (played by Brittany Bristow), and together they rediscover love by making music. The film is directed by Brandon Clark.
Engle sold the book rights to Vinspire Publishing and completed the novelization for a publication release on August 29th, 2023. The book follows the storyline in Engle’s original script and can be added to reader’s Goodreads shelves prior to launch at https://bit.ly/JustJakeShelf.
“Once the script is purchased, it’s out of my hands as far as the final product,” shared Engle, regarding the novelization. “It was important for me to tell my story, so keeping the book rights and selling those allowed me to stay true to my version. After filming starts, the story always changes. Financial restrictions, sets, actors, and many other stipulations go into the actual production that don’t exist in the writer’s imagination. I’m the architect, but the filmmakers are the builders and artisans that bring the story to life.”
Since writing Just Jake, Engle has completed 6 feature films and 3 television shows, which have all been optioned and are in various stages of development and pre-production. She speaks at conventions and schools on writing in film, books, television, and comics, weaving practical advice with experience.
“I love inspiring other people to reach for their dreams,” shared Engle, who spent the past ten years speaking to students about social issues and the power of words. “My books are steppingstones to reach kids and discuss social issues like bullying, self-esteem, and voice, both in life and literature. I also love speaking to writers of all levels at conventions and conferences, in person and virtually. Lots of people have given me tools along the way and believed in me. It’s a great feeling and honor to give that back.”
BIO: Jaimie Engle writes stories with a magic touch for film, television, books, and comics. Her feature film JUST JAKE was sold to TrueBrand Entertainment for a streaming release on UpTV Faith & Family Network, and the novelization to Vinspire Publishing. Besides writing, Jaimie supports her sons in professional theater and varsity football with her husband in Florida. Fun fact? Jaimie danced at the halftime show of the Aloha Bowl in 1990. Follow the journey on social @JaimieEngleWrites.
Altamonte Springs, Florida, October 28th-30th – Florida WritersCon is the premier event for Florida writers, editors, and everything in between. New writers to bestsellers can find their next creative breakthrough and industry connections at Florida WritersCon 2022 through seminars from award-winning children’s authors, successful screenwriters, and acclaimed poets. This year, award-winning author and screenwriter Jaimie Engle has joined the faculty to teach her workshop on Book to Film, where she will share best practices to adaptations for both mediums. The con will be held at the Hilton Orlando/Altamonte Springs located at 350 Northlake Blvd., Altamonte Springs, Florida, from October 28th – October 30th, 2022.
“As co-chair of the 2022 Florida WritersCon, it is my pleasure to welcome Jaimie as a presenter for her workshop Book to Film,” shared Paul Lasevoli, Director of the Florida Writers Association. “We are thrilled that Jaimie will be a part of our workshops scheduled for Saturday, October 29, and so proud to host an event that has attracted so much talent.”
After an online live class on screenwriting, Jaimie wrote and submitted two scripts in February 2021 to True Brand Entertainment, who made an offer to buy one of her submitted screenplays. That contract was signed in June 2022 with production slated to begin late this year. A distribution deal is in place through the UpTV Faith & Family Network and Jaimie is writing the novel adaptation, which she sold to Vinspire Publishing for a 2023 release.
“It’s been my dream to publish books and write movies. When I was a little girl, I wrote tons of short stories and the dialogue to my favorite movies!” said Engle, who published eleven books and has optioned seven film scripts. “With my background as a novelist, I’m excited to be able to share the adaptation process of books and screenplays with fellow Florida writers.”
Engle sold the book rights to Vinspire Publishing for a 2023 novel release, which you can learn more about via the publisher’s website www.vinspirepublishing.com or through Engle’s website. To learn more about the Florida WritersCon, visit https://www.floridawriters.org/florida-writerscon for a weekend jam packed with networking opportunities, workshops, awards, book signings, a Youth Summit, and more!