I'm happy to announce that I am in a TV writing fellowship! It's the NHMC TV Writing Program and it's sponsored by NBC and ABC. It's underway now and keeping me busy. For more info: PROGRAM & WRITERS.
It's been a while since I've posted. It has honestly been a whirlwind since my last post about the AFF. Since then, I have been writing a lot, taking on some side projects and following up with some other exciting opportunities that have come my way.
Also, in the past few months since posting, the anthology my short story was published in was released by Ghost Stories Ink. It seems like just yesterday that the Ghost Stories Inc crew were out here in LA and now, a year later, the have their first anthology.
It's so cool to be a part of something like this and was honored to be asked by Jessica Freeburg to submit. The book features some really great stories by some talented writers including Jay Asher. It has one review so far on Amazon and that one is 5 stars! I promise it wasn't anyone's mom that wrote it. Sadly, I had to miss the release party in Saint Paul, MN back in November, but Jessica told me that the venue was packed and every copy on hand sold out. You can rustle up a copy in paperback or print HERE.
Last weekend I returned to Austin to take in the festival as my digital series script Geeky Pheebs: Gets Schooled semifinaled in the competition. Overall, it was a positive experience the bummer, was that there was a huge storm that flooded the airport on Friday October, 30th and caused many flights from LAX to be canceled and thus prevent panelists and guest speakers from showing up to their events at the fest.
It was a much different vibe this year as a semifinalist because there were special panels and round tables available to us where there was more insight to what it is like to be a professional writer.
Some of my highlight were meeting screenwriter Edward Ricourt, listening to two special presentations by Oscar winner Michael Arndt, and attending the Nickelodeon Happy Hour.
It was also great to see so many people I met last year advance this year in the festival and beyond.
Being that I stayed with a friend on the east side downtown, I was able to appreciate more of the sights and sounds of the city and really gained an appreciation for the culture of Austin. I being from Saint Paul/Minneapolis, Austin felt very similar as it also has a small town vibe with energy of a city much bigger.
If you haven't been to the Austin Film Fest, put it on your radar.
Last week, I got news that I made the quarterfinals for Final Draft's Big Break script contest. It was for my half-hour pilot "The Treehouse." I'm not sure when they announce the next rounds, but I'm excited to get this far in such a respected contest. I'll keep everyone updated to its progress!
Here is the logline for the pilot:
This comedy series follows a straight-laced art student and her colorful co-workers as they serve the often-outrageous clientele of a popular college town head shop.
Also, big-ups to my writing group member Olivia Briggs who's one hour pilot "Wrecking Balls" also achieved quarterfinal status. Lucky 13 is doing big things!
The link to Final Draft's 2015 compete quarterfinal list is HERE
This week, the Austin Film Festival released their list of semi-finalists and second rounders for their screenwriting competition. I am pleased to announce that the pilot for my digital series, Geeky Pheebs: Gets Schooled is among the semi-finalists. I share writing credit with my partner on the Geeky Pheebs project, Ruth Tjornhom. We'll be in Austin to promote this project and hope we can garner some interest.
Congrats to all the other Second Rounders and Semi-Finalists which include some members of my writing group! Full list here: http://www.austinfilmfestival.com/2015-screenplay-semifinalists-and-second-rounders/
A couple of weekends ago at the inaugural On The Line Film Fest in Saint Paul, MN, my short film "Geeky Pheebs: An Ideal Man" won its first award! It won 'Best Comedic Short' out of a field of many great competitors.
I didn't attend the screening, but star Renee Pilon was there to represent the cast and crew. I'm very proud of all the great cast and crew of this film and grateful for all their talents. I also want to thank the film fest organizers for the recognition.
In an industry and field filled with so much rejection, I find it important to celebrate each win.
You can watch the film at GeekyPheebs.com
I'm a semi-finalist! Woooo! I've worked very hard over the past year and a half and dedicated a lot of time to learning the craft of TV writing and it paid off last week when I found out I am a semi-finalist for the 2015/16 Nickelodeon Writing Program. We'll see what happens next, but however it shakes out, I feel very good at this progress and validation that I'm on the right track.
This week, author Jessica Freeburg, emailed me to let me know that the manuscript and art for her short story anthology was being sent off to the publisher. The anthology is a collection of paranormal/horror/thriller short stories written by the members of GSI (Ghost Stories Inc.) including: Scott Spinks, Sean Spinks, Natalie Fowler, Jessica Freeburg, and Jay Asher.
I also have a story included in the book and this will be my first time being published as a writer in book format. This release will be extra special as there will be both a print and digital editions. I'm beyond excited to be included in this anthology and have my story next to such talented and well-established writers. My tale is a ghost story titled "The Lift" about a day in the life of an LA actor that slips into a different time and faces a terrifying vision. The book will be released in mid-November by Red Sofa Literary and is intended for a YA audience. Keep posted to my website for more details as we approach the launch date.
I took an excursion to Santa Barbara over the 4th of July holiday weekend. It's always nice to get out of LA for a bit. I was also able to use my camera a bit to take a few pictures of the gorgeous coast. I haven't had a chance to take many landscape photos since my time in Iceland, so this was nice practice.
Both of my short films "The Red Dress" and "Geeky Pheebs: An Ideal Man" have been selected to screen at the first annual 'On the Line' film festival in Saint Paul, Minnesota. The festival runs August 5-9 and will take place at the Landmark Center in downtown Saint Paul. It's an honor to have both films selected to play. For more information about the festival, please visit their website HERE
I'll post more details about the screening date and time when it becomes available. Thanks to all the cast and crew of these films.