Interview with Inês Gomes - Author of Flor Sem Tempo
To mark the start of the new SP Televisão production, Flor sem Tempo, we will introduce you, throughout the month of February, some of the faces that work daily for the final result, from the authors, to the producers and directors, to the actors and technical team.
The second interviewee in this segment is Inês Gomes, the author of Flor Sem Tempo. For over 20 years giving free rein to her imagination and writing stories, Salty Sea, Wild Land, and Star Hill are other major successes of the author.
When did you decide to start writing for television fiction? Any previous experience in the writing area?
It was by chance. I graduated in Social Communication, but I always liked writing. After graduating I worked as a journalist and gave classes. At the time, NBP was opening Casa da Criação and a friend gave me Maria João Mira's contact. She sent me a script to adapt - from the soap opera Nunca digas adeus - and I adapted it to the best of my capacities. I had never had much interest in scripts or the screenwriting area, but I must have done something right if she hired me! So I started at Casa da Criação, where I learned a lot, and over the years I've been doing training in this area. And then I was invited to come to SP... And now it's been over 20 years of writing scripts.
What was it like to participate in the writing of the "Gloria" series, working together? How was this process?
I usually work as a team, both in novels and series. Now, a soap opera is the ultramarathon of writing, developed at a much faster pace and where we have less time to think and write. In a series with only ten episodes, we can work very well on the story lines, the characters, and each script individually. We have more time to research, write, rewrite, and rewrite again. In Gloria we created a writers room where the whole team worked and discussed each episode.
What inspires you to create a story that becomes a television product?
Anything can serve as inspiration: a news article, a story I hear, someone I know... I am always attentive and I make the most of everything. It's not gossip, it's professional interest!
What is the narrative strategy for writing a soap opera? What are the essential ingredients?
Soap operas are products made to appeal to all kinds of audiences, so we have to strike a good balance between the various stories. I believe it has to have a strong central plot that captivates the audience, then it has to have well built characters, with several layers and strong objectives, good comedy cores, but integrated in the other cores. The audience has to identify with the characters, have to be moved, laugh and cry. I usually like to have some mystery, and there is always a strong love and aspirational side.
How are you living this new challenge, the soap opera Flor sem Tempo?
At a very fast rhythm... The project started late and production and directing are faster than writing. No matter how hard I run, it seems like they are always on my back! Fortunately I have an excellent team of very experienced writers who have helped me a lot in this project. They are: Cândida Ribeiro and Rita Roberto, who are my right and left-hands, Ana Casaca, Ana Vasques, José Pinto Carneiro and Manuel Carneiro. Flor Sem Tempo has been a funny challenge because we managed to have some cores and characters that we really enjoy writing.