A Maplewood author was recognized in November for a screenplay adaptation of an American novel written in 1799.
Steven Clark took second place in the annual CinemaSpoke screenplay competition for his adaptation of the 1799 novel, Edgar Huntly, by Charles Brockden Brown.
“It’s Edgar Allen Poe meets the Last of the Mohicans,” he said. “We have the first American murder mystery, we have ghosts, we have a sleepwalker, we have a young man unsure of himself, Indian attacks. One thing I think the judges liked, it had a lot of action in it.”
Clark received an honorable mention in 2001 and last year was one of five finalists. He said this year’s winner was a zombie movie. “Can’t fight zombies,” he said.
Anyone within 150 miles of St. Louis can enter the contest, and Clark said approximately 50 entered this year.
He said the difference between literature and a screenplay, is a screenplay goes from moment to moment, where a novel tends to explain motivations more.
“In a movie, the big question you always have is what happens next?” he said.
Clark, 60, is a security guard by trade, which he said gives him plenty of time to write. He went to University of Missouri, St. Louis and has lived in Columbia and Boston. He moved to Maplewood in 2001.
“In some ways, Maplewood reminds me of Boston,” he said. “I always want to move where there’s stores nearby, post office, library, and I like to walk around a lot, and everything is here. Been here since 2001 and I’m extremely happy here.”
Clark said he’s working on his third novel, called German Days. He was stationed in Germany with the Army in 1974-76. “It’s a story about a young man growing up, having adventures. It’s Huck Finn in olive drab,” he said.
You can catch Clark at the writing group, Writers Under the Arch, which meets at the St. Louis Artists Guild, in Clayton.
He also performs with the St. Louis Shakespeare company, the Clayton Community Theatre, First Run Theatre, and in April, he’ll be on the stage at the St. Louis Community College Meramec Theatre, in Macbeth.