Universal Pictures Writers’ Fellowship

Great, memorable movies have become scarce as hell these last few years. Everything is remakes of what was already done. Originality has officially left the building. It’s rare that a beginning screenwriter/director will get shine on the big screen or the television screen. A few such as Lee Daniels and LaShonda Rhimes have slid through and I’m grateful because that is motivation for me but (and you knew there was a but) there isn’t enough good screenwriters. Well aspiring screenwriters listen up because opportunity is knocking at your door with a vengeance.

Universal Pictures (yes that Universal) has set up a writer’s fellowship program for up to five potential writers to work with the studio for a year. They will be able to:

Work on current projects
Pitch original ideas
Attend workshops
Receive mentoring
Interact with top literary agents and
Sit in on Universal’s executive meetings

Starting September 3rd applicants can submit their packets. Only online submissions allowed and only 500 will be accepted. The Writers’ Fellowship Application, a legal release form, resume, 2 letters of recommendations and a statement of purpose answers are what are required. Semi finalists will be asked for a 2nd screenplay. Ten finalists will then be chosen and be interviewed in LA. Finally 5 will be chosen as participants of Universal Pictures Writers’ Fellowship. Visit nbcunicareers.com for full info and good luck!

Peace and luv!

Posted from none other than your favorite writer’s favorite writer Ms Talia

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What are you scared of? The sophomore novel jinx

You’ve heard a musician who had a successful debut album voice their fear of bringing it on their sophomore project. Well writers have the same fear. What? You ain’t know.

I published a novel myself about two years ago. Instead of the success I assumed I would get I ended up selling nothing. None of my friends bought a damn thing! My intentions afterwards was to publish again however somewhere along the lines I let fear seep right on in and get comfortable. I began to look at myself through the eyes of others who did not share the same vision and excitement as me. Bad mistake! Take my advice when I say don’t let anyone switch your mentality and make you doubt your God given talent! Real friends and fam will ride with you all the way through.

The quicker you realize that your fear is paralyzing you and your hustle the sooner you can get over it and get down to business.

Go ahead fail, fail, fail!

I know you are looking at the screen like, huh? You read it right, it’s ok to fail. Actually it is recommended because the more you experience failure the less you become scared of taking risks. You will be able to prepare yourself by using past mistakes and you will bounce back quicker. So get used to it and grow a thick skin.

Speak your goals to anyone who will listen.

If you tell your writing ideas and goals to everyone you meet they are going to expect you to deliver that promise. Seeing them as you tell them some lame excuse as to why you didn’t finish is the worse feeling. Replaced fear with pride and a big ass ego.

Prepare yourself better the second go round.

Sit down and write out everything that you did wrong the first time you published. Then create a detailed plan on how you are going to prevent that from happening. As you are writing have that list out, especially at those times when you feel fearful; look at it and realize you have ish under control this time. Then keep hustlin!

Nothing is guaranteed in this business called writing. But you will never know what you can accomplish until you do the damn thang! Make your passion slash those fears to shreds!

Peace and luv from your girl Ms. Talia!

Posted from none other than your favorite writer’s favorite writer Ms Talia

Open Book Projects Wants You

Only if you’re a writer that is. Open Books have come up with a creative concept to a project. Each week people from all over can put in their submissions of what they feel will be the next episode to their project. The first chapter (or episode) is called Face, your job is to look at video and get to creating. Each new episode will be turned into an ebook and the person/s who has their submission picked will share in the revenues.

It is great when technology and social media is used to connect people from all corners of the world. Hopefully this project will create many fans. Visit http://www.openbookprojects.com to submit.

Peace and luv!

Is It Worth It?

Kickstarter. In case you’re not sure of what it is or do Kickstarter is a website that people who need projects funded can create a campaign to hopefully attract some gracious people to fund that project. People from artists, movie directors and the like have turned to Kickstarter to hopefully get projects funded. How many publishing projects have been funded? According to Kickstarter’s findings less than 32% of publishing projects get funded. Over 7,000 projects never got a single pledge. Wow, 7,000? Well if you think about it how many actually create campaigns daily, I’m for sure a hell of a lot more than 7 gs. Seven projects have raised well over one million. Actually $215 million have been pledged to successfully fund projects and 63% of theatre projects have been successfully funded.

Don’t scrap that project just yet, these numbers just mean before you get a campaign going make sure you have a legit plan for getting some big dawgs to fund your project. Start inquiring and getting people geeked before the fundraising begin, if what you are presenting to people as a teaser is getting lukewarm responses tweek some ish. Offer incentives for giving money to your cause.

The great thing about Kickstarter is if by the deadline

kickstarter logo

you have not reached the financial goal then it goes back to the funders. Which means you go back to the drawing board; however too many unsuccessful campaigns will damage your reputation to deliver so be careful. Have any of you done anything thru Kickstarter? Let me know how you did.

Peace and luv!

Kickstarter Publishing Project of The Week

Logo innov-it

Image via Wikipedia

Need a project funded? Have a manuscript collecting dust in a corner somewhere? A script that you passionately need to be put on film? Have you heard of Kickstarter? I ran into this about a year ago and thought it was a perfect way for anybody to help fund someone’s project/s. It is not limited to just writers, innovators of all areas can be funded. How it works is you create sort of like a business plan on the project that you are trying to make into a reality. Once you get the plan together and add up all of the numbers needed to really fund this project (do NOT get ridiculous, this is a legit site and using it in any other way other than to get a honest project out to the public will not only tarnish your name but the Kickstarter website) set a time frame. Make sure it’s an attainable time frame; I’ll tell you why it’s so important. Say for instance you create a project you wanna raise money for, the amount is $5,000 and you put down that you want to raise that money in 30 days. If that 30 days come around and you only have $4,999 guess what? You don’t get the funds and the money goes back to the sponsors that gave it to you. Now you have to start all over again and hope that the sponsors come back to help you raise the money. That’s why before you even hit ‘go’ you need to have a detailed marketing plan so you know what to do, when to do it and what to do after you realize that what you did was not good enough before that time runs out.

Now Kickstarter wants to push it up a notch. Each week they have decided to highlight a special project. This will give great PR to whomever they choose to support for that week. Are there any tips on how to be one of Kickstarter’s Publishing Project? Of course:

  1. Give potential sponsors a simple but clear visualization of the project.
  2. Take advantage of free online tools to create your video (Aviary Music Creation, SoundCloud and Prelinger Archives are a few examples)
  3. Give rewards to the people/businesses that has contributed if the contract goes thru (free book, t-shirt, you get the idea)
  4. Choose amount carefully
  5. Use all of your social media networks to get it out there!

Remember closed mouths don’t get fed. Check out Kickstarter’s website for full details.

Peace and luv!

Building Your Own Brand for 2012

I’ve slacked this year! Compared to what I wanted to achieve for 2011 I haven’t did a damn thang. I was all over the place writing everyday but not producing anything out of those intense writing sessions so for 2012 I’ve decided to go back to my basics and stick to one project at a time and don’t start another one until I’ve seen the current project done ya feel me? I have been really thinking about what I am trying to accomplish with the brand I am attempting to create and what I need to do to get from point A to point B.

How the hell do you make a successful brand anyway?

Shit I don’t know but I will find out if it kills me. Ain’t that what 50 Cent said? Oh…that was ‘get rich or die trying’ tomato, toe-mah-to! I am more in-tuned to what I

2012 (film)

Image via Wikipedia

put on my social networks. I changed my cover pic on FB which I am glad FB redid the format so it looks more like a personal website. My cover to me is bananas! It reflects what I love, what I am about. People’s attention span is short as hell so first impressions are important. I need people to know what I’m about right off the jump. I may not have the blueprint to creating that monster brand yet but I do know that you need to be more aware of what you put out there. When someone sees your name what will they think? Will you put your stamp on your shit if you were a person looking in? If you pause to think of your answer well that is your answer.

Writer’s envy

Lately I’ve been kind of jealous of other writers I’ve been seeing. I see them networking and getting a better response than what I am getting and I’m wondering what the hell am I doing wrong? I’m not jealous to the point where I am hateful but it do get under my skin a tad bit – enough to notice. Instead of sitting in a corner with my screwface on I’m using my little jealous spat as motivation. They had to start somewhere too, right?

I do know that you get what you put out and I realize that I am my worst critic. I need to blaze that fire under my ass and get this shit crackin’. You will see Talia aka Mz. Diamondz in 2012 (God willing of course! You hear that Big Guy, lol)

Peace and luv!

Pubslush

Are you familiar with Kickstarters? It is a great organization that allows writers, artists and the like put up projects that they need funded to get it started. Members give a time limit for companies, fans, and family to bid on the projects. If at the deadline the money is raised then the artist gets the money to fund the project.

Pubslush is similar to that. Readers will be able to read a few chapters then afterwards if they choose to ‘invest’ in the project they can if not they are not obligated to do so.

Writers submit 10 pages as well as a summary of the book in order to be listed. And every book sold Pubslush will donate a book to children. Nice!

Peace and luv!