Person 2 Person: David Howard

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Person 2 Person: David Howard (Photo provided by Excel Entertainment)

(KUTV) David Howard is a writer who wrote and co-directed the new film, "Trek: The Movie," which is now in theaters.

The film is about a young man who is dealing with unexpected tragedy and challenges to his faith.

But it's also funny--a parody of mock pioneer treks many LDS youth participate in.

"The comedic line is, 'Let's take 150 teenagers into the desert and see what happens,'" described Howard. "We had a lot of fun with the cultural, iconic people you see within the church and the community."

The film was shot right here in Utah.

Howard may be best known for his first big hit on the movie screen: "Galaxy Quest."

It wasn't called Galaxy Quest when Howard first wrote it. It was called "Captain Starshine."

He wrote it working as a temp in LA while trying to break into the entertainment business.

"I would move from office to office to office," he said.

As a temp, he often wouldn't have anything to do but sit at a desk.

"So I would bring my work and write it while they were paying me to sit at the desk." he said.

He had a friend who worked at a production company who offered to pitch some of the scripts he was working on.

"Captain Starshine" ended up making its way to the company Dreamworks, which decided to make it.

"When I went to visit the set it was just amazing," Howard said. "They were trying to do it quickly, and they were on five different sound stages."

Even though the film was a big hit, it wasn't easy getting to that point.

He had been working in LA for 10 years before one of his scripts was made into a movie.

Howard also had a family to take care of, and his wife was "very, very supportive about all that."

"There were some tense moments, and there were some moments where I went, 'Can I keep doing this?'" Howard said. "But then I just kind of broke my way and that changed everything."

Howard has done all kinds of writing, but is embarking on a new path: writing musicals after teaming up with a composer in Southern California.

"I've been writing musicals with him, where I write the book and the lyrics and he writes the music. We had a show off-Broadway," Howard said.

To know you're in a good place in life, Howard believes you need to have a good answer for two questions.

"The first one is, 'Do you feel good about what you're doing right now?' And second of all, 'If you keep doing that are you going to be where you want to be in 20 years?' If you've got a 'yes' for both of those you're probably on the right track," Howard said.

Web Exclusives:

David Howard talks about how 'Trek: The Movie' came to be

The success David Howard experienced after writing 'Galaxy Quest'

David Howard's writing advice