Writing Sample-The Afterlife of Charlotte Browning By Myron Grace
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The Afterlife of Charlotte Browning Movie Script
Script Started 09-07-21
Scene One Opening: The scene opens up on a private lake near a countryside home. Charlotte Browning is sitting on a moss-covered rock not far from a Lagoon where it is a small waterfall. The scene is being narrated by Charlotte Browning as she reflects on her life.
Camera Shot One: The Camera pans across the open scene at a private lake near and oak tree. The lake has a Lagoon with a small waterfall which catches the cameras focus for a few seconds. The camera finally finds the image of Charlotte Browning at a far distance and slowly zooms in on her.
Charlotte Browning: I’m sitting here in my favorite spot on this moss-covered rock. I am at the private lake in family home on the countryside. I can see the waterfall on the Lagoon area in front of me. One of my favorite spots because I can see my reflection in the water.
Narrator: Charlotte Browning doing life reflections. This may happen several times throughout the script.
Here is my favorite spot. This moss-covered and worn rock
makes a comfortable support. From here I see the waterfall. I can
touch the cool water of the reflective pond.
How many times have I reclined here? Ten or eleven, I
think, since my beginnings. I never tire of what is to come next. I
have not always fared as well as I had hoped. Many times, my
lessons went unlearned. This time I believe I have done better. This
life has taught me many new lessons. The pond is so clear, so
beautiful. I need only to gaze into its comforting depths and wait for
the light. It's so bright at first! My life in New England is before me
My incarnation in New England was a good one. It was
a full existence, even though I spent most of it alone. Success was
earned in many areas. Most of my failures were in the areas that
were not important to my growth, and I, therefore, advanced. There
had been a few adventures and many sorrows. I survived them all. I
saw; I imagined what I could not see; and I dreamed of what I could
not consciously imagine. For the most part, I did well.
* * *
I was born Charlotte Belinda Paine in the year 1792. My
parents, William, and Sarah Paine, lived in a fine home in Boston,
Massachusetts, on Washington Street. It was my grandmother's
home. We lived there together until she buried both of my parents,
and I moved to Maine with my husband, Charles.
I was an only child, because my mother had a difficult time
carrying children to full term.
Mother had a miscarriage before I was born, and two after my
birth. Her final miscarriage resulted in her death at the age of
twenty-five. Although I was six years old at the time, I remembered
her well my whole life. She was a beautiful, sensitive woman.
Everyone loved her. Father and I never quite recovered from her
My grandfather, also named William, passed from us before I
was born. My father and mother lived from the beginning of their
marriage with grandmother, Mary Willis Paine. My grandmother's
family had lived in Boston since the early 1600s. The family was an
institution in the area for decades. Grandmother was highly
respected by every Bostonian of any importance. Because this was
the case, she was an extremely busy woman. Her days were filled
with hurrying from one charity meeting or function to another.
Grandmother always made time for me, however. Each evening
before I fell asleep, she was at my bedside to talk about our day and
to kiss me good night. She never ran short of intriguing stories of her
many acquaintances in the arts and high society of Boston. I never
tired of hearing the secrets she confided about her many friends and
"Charlotte, the best way to move into the high society of
Boston is to know more about them than they do about you,”
Grandmother told me often.
This made me giggle, and I begged her to tell me more.
She assured me that I was her only confidante and the only friend she
ever trusted. I never betrayed her trust--not even to Father.
Grandmother and I were the best of comrades, despite the difference
in our ages. She knew she could not replace my mother, but she
filled an enormous gap in my life. I loved her dearly.
My father was a very successful lawyer in Boston.
Grandmother helped see to that. He was highly respected and well
known throughout New England and the country. He did his best
with working at his law practice and with raising me. As busy as he
was, he never sent me away from his office when I went to visit him.
The Afterlife of Charlotte Browning
I never doubted his love for me. He was as devoted to me as I was to
He and Grandmother hired a young girl of sixteen to care for
me after Mother was gone. Her name was Lizzy. Although she was
only ten years my senior, I considered her a mother figure in my life.
I learned to love her very much. Father would often take Lizzy and
me on business trips with him. I met many important and influential
people on these trips, and many more at the parties that were held at
our home. After I was grown and no longer needed a nanny, Lizzy
stayed on with us. She helped with the kitchen duties and was a
trusted companion to me and to Grandmother.
The grand parties that Grandmother and Father gave for
almost every occasion fascinated me. After everyone thought I was
asleep, Lizzy and I would sneak out of my room during many of
these affairs. We hid in the shadows of the second-floor banister as
we watched all the important people of Boston and the country float
in from their fancy carriages. I would try to guess who they were
from the stories my grandmother had told me.
After the great events, Grandmother went on for days about
what was said, and what had happened while I was "fast asleep
upstairs." Lizzy and I just looked at each other and held back our
giggles as best we could.
Once I was twelve, I no longer had to slink around the
Grandmother and Father allowed me to stand at the front door
between them to greet every guest. I was introduced not only to all
of the important people in Boston, but too many of the most
influential people of the country, as well. By the time I was fifteen, I
had met two future presidents of the United States, several diplomats
and other government officials, a half- dozen renowned actors, and
many other well-known personalities of the era. Except for the death
of my mother at such an early age, I lived a truly charmed life.
Another important person in my life as I was growing up was
my cousin, Helen. She lived close to our home in Boston. Father
and his sister, Margaret, Helen’s mother, did not get on very well.
Aunt Margaret had a harsh personality that most people found
difficult. Her friends stayed near her only because she was
Grandmother’s daughter, and not because they really cared for her.
She had a nasty habit of ordering people about in public.
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