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Aina Izzah On Getting Her Own TV Show, 'Electric Dust Agency'



Aina Izzah has been capturing the hearts of many with her writings since she was in primary school. In 2020, she took it a step further by joining the Viu Pitching Forum and emerged as the winner, her pitch- "Electric Dust Agency" is set to be made into a show in 2022 and production is currently underway--be sure to lookout for this exciting show on your small screens soon!



What made you join the Viu Pitching Forum?

Since I began my pupillage back in June 2020 (to be admitted to the Malaysian Bar), there was what I would describe “a creative drought” in my life - I wasn’t writing and I definitely wasn’t creating any new stories. Viu Pitching Forum came to me like a lifeline. It was a way for me to get back into my writing and go through all of my ideas for TV shows and movies. It was a dream of mine of course, and I had always been a fan of Viu Malaysia’s original shows so it was such a surprise when an email came in announcing that my submission was chosen among the other amazing finalists.





What was the inspiration behind Electric Dust Agency?

This story about managing trauma is inspired by my own personal experience - it was a memory of me at my mother’s deathbed, she’d passed away because of cancer in 2018. It was still an excruciatingly painful memory to recall and ‘Electric Dust Agency’ actually challenges us with the question; would you alter a terrible memory in order to move on?



What are some of the challenges you faced while pitching/coming up with this idea?

The challenges came even before I made my submission; for someone who often creates fake scenarios and stories, the big question was “What idea do I pitch?”. The pandemic has been incredibly exhausting for me and everyone I know and love so ‘Electric Dust Agency’ as a story about overcoming trauma came naturally. As a writer, I had to learn a lot about how to develop my characters because I was more plot-driven so that was a skill that I eventually got to hone through the Viu Pitching Forum.





What was the inspiration behind Electric Dust Agency?

This story about managing trauma is inspired by my own personal experience - it was a memory of me at my mother’s deathbed, she’d passed away because of cancer in 2018. It was still an excruciatingly painful memory to recall and ‘Electric Dust Agency’ actually challenges us with the question; would you alter a terrible memory in order to move on?



If it was not Electric Dust Agency, would you have had a different idea to pitch?

There were other ideas of different genres as well like musicals, political and crime thrillers but I was honoured that ‘Electric Dust Agency’ was chosen. It was truly a personal concept and to be able to share this with other people even during the pitch was an experience I would never forget (or alter).





Independence is important but teamwork and collaboration will take you far from where you are comfortable with.


When did your journey as a creative begin (both personally and professionally)?

I wrote my first short story in primary school about war and loneliness so that has been the starting point of my attempts at writing. It was when I started doing movie and music reviews at The Daily Seni that I began to consider writing seriously.





What are some of the things your artworks are constantly seeking to explore?

I'm always intrigued by Malaysian culture. Whether it's having a huge family dynamic, living in a suburban area dominated by prying housewives or even obsessing over well-known legal cases that are in the news. My work is very much grounded in the lives of Malaysians and hopefully I'm able to explore more of that.



What was the most significant/impactful project for you thus far — why?

There are so many! I've written articles for a luxury magazine, I did a submission that won a case at a legal firm where I did my pupillage and wrote a script for an LGBTQA+ audio drama that I also directed. Honestly, I can't pick just one.





We read you’re a qualified lawyer but also a creative -- tell us a little bit about this and how it interplays with your creativity.

I joke that I’m a lawyer by education and a writer by practice. Law school taught me a lot about discipline and the importance of reading and research which have influenced how I navigate the world of journalism. I wouldn’t have been able to be the writer that I am without my experience in the legal industry and vice versa.


What has your journey been like so far in this regard?

Rocky at best! But I managed to balance it all. I’m a firm believer of not settling on one thing. You have to constantly learn new things and venture into different industries. It was during the pandemic that I experimented with makeup, wrote an LGBTQA+ audio drama called ‘Hi Sayang’ and created a Youtube channel on pop-culture. Always try something new!





Do you have any tips for those that want to achieve the same things you do but lack the confidence?

This isn’t for everyone especially if you enjoy your own company but I would recommend “finding your people”. A healthy support system who would help give advice and correct your mistakes but also remember that you do the same for them. Even when it comes to writing a single story or article, I still believe that it takes a village. Independence is important but teamwork and collaboration will take you far from where you are comfortable with.


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