Editor’s Note: Avril Wilson is a UK author and writer of The Healing Touch who is now working towards funding a film based on her book. Here she shares her journey in writing and self-publishing and novel and working to fund her new film project.
I studied photography at Plymouth college of Art and Design and then worked in Natural history film and photography. In 1985 I became winner of the BBC Wildlife photographer of the year, other animals category. In 2000, one of my photographs of a Barn Owl was used as the second class Royal mail millennium stamp. I have also written and published magazine articles.
I am the proud owner of two beautiful Arab horses Oshe, aged 13, and Serenity, aged 9, and in 2005 I embarked upon a life changing series of events when I decided to breed a foal from my then 3 year old Arab mare. In 2007 I took on my biggest challenge yet, writing and self publishing a novel. Ever since I watched my Arab mare Oshe foaling one May morning in 2006 I have been driven and inspired by that spiritual event. The idea for the book, which I wrote with the intention that it would become a film, took germ as I witnessed this special foal, Serenity, being born.
I thought researching and writing my book was tough, it took me three and a half years because I was working full time. This was only the beginning, a stroll in the park. I was then to discover that formatting and publishing the book on Amazon Kindle was an even more major task. More like an up hill cross country run. I have now however taken on a true marathon of endurance and perseverance as I start my long journey to take the story of an ill ballerina and a racehorse who heal each other to the big screen.
The story follows the entangled lives of a talented but ill ballet dancer who is at the end of her career and collapses on stage, and a supreme but flawed race horse tipped to win the Gold Cup.
A chance trip to the races changes both of their lives forever when the horse Running Wind falls and is badly injured in front of Natalie. On a whim the ballet dancer buys the horse to save his life and the two embark upon a wonderful healing journey together.
A story of hope, friendship, and above all love.
With about 20% of the script completed I am now looking for a director. The intention with this film production is to use young new young talent, new actors, technicians, film crew etc. to make a truly British film in Britain. In a ship full of cadets it is prudent to put a seasoned captain in charge!
I am based in Devon where I went to Art college in Plymouth and am therefore surrounded by some of the most spectacular scenery in Britain. I hope as much local talent will be used, and promotional video/marketing help has already been provided by David Kilkelly of Blinkback Ashburton.
The major obstacle to overcome is funding the film. I am applying to Creative England for lottery funding and we will use Kickstarter crowdfunding. Although I have a mountain to climb I am 100% dedicated and I know it will work.
A donation from the book sales goes to the World Horse Welfare, and my long term dream is to run a horse rescue centre here in Devon.
You can also view and contribute to the Kickstarter campaign here.