My Story: Act One by Katie Schafer
My childhood consisted of writing stories on construction paper, performing plays for a tolerant audience (my parents), and memorizing my favorite children’s books so I could recite them to anyone who would listen. In the summer of 2006 the IDEAS team graciously took me under their creative wing and taught me the foundation of how to tell a story. The short time I spent in Orlando solidified my determination to make an attempt to tell stories for a living. I remember thinking: people actually go to “work” everyday and tell stories?! The idea seemed too good to be true.
I was accepted to Loyola Marymount University School of Film & Television where my storytelling foundation continued to grow. I graduated early in December 2010 when my internship at Sony Pictures Television turned into a job as a Post PA for the television series Franklin & Bash. After the first season of Franklin & Bash wrapped, I followed my producer to a new series from the producers of 24 called Homeland.
In the beginning I was just thankful to have another paycheck coming my way, but when I finished reading the pilot script for Homeland, I knew it was something special. I couldn’t wait for the next script to pop up in my inbox, and the next, and the next. It was then that it dawned on me: while I loved how an editor takes all the loose ends of the story and ties them together in post, the story starts with the script – with the idea. I had to find my way to the center of this brainchild. I had to find my way to the writers’ office.
When the first season of Homeland wrapped, I returned to Franklin & Bash for season 2, spent a few crazy months on a pilot for CBS (Made in Jersey), before I found myself back to Homeland for season 2 as a Post Coordinator. As the saying goes, success is where opportunity meets preparation, and my open door of opportunity came in July of last year. A position opened as a writers’ assistant for Homeland and I jumped at it without hesitation.
That’s where I’m at today – continuing to develop my storytelling skills as a writers’ assistant for Homeland. In an industry where genuine individuals can be hard to come by (especially the successful ones), I’m extremely thankful to be in the company of some of the most talented, but more importantly, truly genuine people. I spend my days taking notes, researching anything I can about the Middle East, and coordinating the casting of new characters. Who knows where my story will end, but I can say, without a doubt, it all started with IDEAS.
Homeland Season 2 premiere party in NYC on the Intrepid. Pictured with me (from left to right) is Meredith Stiehm (Executive Producer/Writer), Lisa James (Asst to Alex Cary), and myself.
That’s me at the Neuschwanstein Castle in Germany this past December. That’s castle where Walt Disney got his inspiration for Sleeping Beauty’s castle in the Magic Kingdom. It’s not quite the Magic Kingdom…but the Germans almost got it right.