Today we’d like to introduce you to Nick Cardiff.
Hi Nick, so excited to have you on the platform. So before we get into questions about your work-life, maybe you can bring our readers up to speed on your story and how you got to where you are today?
I started out writing and producing plays in Chicago. My favorite thing about the Chicago theater scene was the crazy amount of collaboration that exists in its close-knit community. It was, without question, a hard place to leave. When I moved to LA 8 years ago, I was sad to find that I lost a lot of that intrinsic collaborative spirit.
However, about five years ago, as I was poring over book after book on screenwriting craft and breaking down feature-film and pilot story structures, I frequently found myself being asked by friends and friends-of-friends to give feedback on their screenplays, stories, and sometimes just their ideas. Before I knew it, I was doing everything from consulting to writing for new clients more than I was writing at my computer alone. I finally had rediscovered the collaboration spirit I had lost.
After heading down the path of story development, I was able to capitalize on that momentum by creating a business that fuels my love for writing, collaborating, and helping other writers bring their stories to their highest potential. I eventually quit my day job to pursue writing, something I knew was a risk, but I stayed committed to the mindset of seizing opportunities and took it anyway. Thankfully, it has worked out.
We all face challenges, but looking back would you describe it as a relatively smooth road?
My biggest obstacle has always been myself. Getting out of my own way is a full-time job. But we’re all a work-in-progress, so I’ve found if I do a little for myself each day, I progress. I have A.D.D. so I meditate. I also tend to get stuck by “the rules” of the craft, so I do writing exercises to free myself of those constraints.
I never set out to be a freelance Screenwriter, Story Consultant, and Script Doctor. This came as a result over many years of the mindset to seize as many opportunities as possible and to travel down the paths that most clearly presented themselves to me. While it hasn’t all been smooth sailings, I have been very fortunate to have gained the trust of many writers who continue to refer me to others.
Appreciate you sharing that. What else should we know about what you do?
As a Freelance Story Consultant, Script Doctor, and Screenwriter, I help writers and non-writers realize the worlds and stories they have created in their minds. I give writers detailed script coverage, help conceptualize and outline ideas, and complete and revise screenplay drafts.
I’m proud to have worked my way up to where I am with no formal writing education. When I couldn’t afford to go to school for it, I started reading every screenwriting book I could find and analyzing movies and pilots as I watched them. That lead to me being a top 10 Finalist in Austin Television Festival’s Pitch Competition and then starting my business as a freelance screenwriter.
Do you have any memories from childhood that you can share with us?
I took a really fun road trip with my grandma. I was around 14 and we went to the Shaw Theater Festival in Ontario where I saw Merrily We Roll Along. It was my first professional theatrical experience, as well as my first introduction to Sondheim. I had only recently started performing in my town’s community theater, so the experience catapulted my love for storytelling. The musical is told backward in time, which has definitely had an impact on me as a writer. The entire trip, from the shows to the time I spent with my grandma, is a very important memory for me.
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Website: www.nickcardiff.com
- Instagram: @nickcardiff
- Twitter: @NSP_NickCardiff