Designing Christmas by April J. Miller | Script Revolution

Designing Christmas

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Page Count: 
132pp

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Logline: 
An insecure divorced mother goes on a reality show where she is paired with a builder to restore and decorate a house for Christmas to win a job and keep her children.
Synopsis/Details: 

KATHLEEN MYERS, a divorced mother of two: JACKSON (12), and DANIELLE (6) wants to be independent of her ex-husband, JOHN, a rich and arrogant SOB, by becoming an Interior Decorator. To do this, she enters a contest to be on a reality television show which she wins.

Glenloche is a small Scottish community in upper New York. With JAMIE McKNIGHT, she has eight months to restore, design and decorate the house for Christmas. In the back, sits a huge overgrown gazebo with a fountain. In its center stands a statue shaped like a dancer. When Kathleen expresses a desire to include the gazebo in the contest, Jamie mysteriously forbids it.

Kathleen begins designing using modern, up-to-date ideas. Jamie pleads with her to work with the history of the house, however, her insecurities and desperate need to win will not allow her to take the chance. If she does not win, she could lose her children. Unfortunately, that history also includes a ferret named Nipper.

On an outing to the Highland Games, Kathleen’s and Jamie’s relationship deepens. But tragedy strikes when John comes with a court order giving him custody of the children. Held in Jamie’s arms, she watches as her children are taken away.

Resolved to win, Kathleen resumes work. Jamie invites her to the gazebo where he bares his heart. The dancer is the image of the woman he was to marry. After a terrible fight, she was killed in a car wreck, leaving Jamie devastated, and blaming himself for the accident. Kathleen finds the words to help Jamie overcome his guilt and open his heart to new love.

When the house is finished, Jamie invites Kathleen to dine with him and his grandmother, LADY ELISABETH. While gone, a family of raccoons enters the house. Chased by Nipper, they destroy almost everything. When she sees the wreckage, Kathleen is broken. It’s over and John has won.

The next day, Lady Elisabeth reveals that the house was her birth home, teaching her the history of each room and piece of furniture. Inspired, Kathleen remakes the house in its traditional setting. She finishes, but it’s not enough to impress the judges.

In family court, Kathleen finally stands up for herself and makes a last minute plea, describing John’s verbal abuse and her fears for the children. It persuades the judge who awards her custody. She is further rewarded with a marriage proposal from Jamie. After the wedding, they have a late Christmas to celebrate being a family.

Submitted: July 7, 2018
Last Updated: July 7, 2018

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April J. Miller's picture

The Writer: April J. Miller

I have been writing since elementary school; it’s not what I do, it’s who I am. I started writing seriously in my early thirties. Taking a course with the Institute of Children’s Literature, I’ve had several stories and articles published in magazines. One book, Padrone: War Horse of Heaven was picked up by Tate Publishing. In 2013, I was asked by a friend to write a secondary script to accompany her Christian sit—com, and found my passion. Since that time, I have written six movie scripts, learning more with each one. Living in rural Georgia on a limited income has proven to be a challenge, but one I am determined to overcome. Waiting on my school bus for the children to be dismissed, I... Go to bio

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