Posts made in February, 2011

NOVELIST AND SCREENWRITER KARL ALEXANDER TO SPEAK AT MARCH 8TH MEETING OF VCWC

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: NOVELIST AND SCREENWRITER KARL ALEXANDER TO SPEAK AT MARCH 8TH MEETING OF VCWC Meeting will be held in temporary new location in Thousand Oaks at Glen Kendall Ballroom (Ventura, CA – February 26, 2011) How to take life experiences, both positive and painful, and develop them into characters will be the topic that novelist and screenwriter Karl Alexander will discuss at the March 8th meeting of the Ventura County Writers Club. He will review parts from his own novels and screenplays to illustrate examples. Raised in a family of screenwriters, Alexander has been an insider to many of the top movies ever produced. The Disney classic “Old Yeller” was written by his father while his uncle stakes claim to the highly respected, “Ben Hur.” With the closure of Borders Books on Oxnard, the club has had to move a second time in less than three months. While searching for a permanent, the club will be meeting at the Glen Kendall Jr. Ballroom at Los Robles Greens in Thousands Oaks.  The address is 299 S Moorpark Rd, on the south side of the 101 Freeway.  The public is invited and all attendees are asked to park near the far end of the building, using the West Entrance. The March speaker, Alexander Karl, forged his own path with an incredibly diverse education and experience.  From thinning pears on an Oregon orchard to receiving a philosophy degree from Brown University, this fifth generation Angeleno seems to pace himself to successful writing. After serving a commission as a Captain in the U.S. Marine Corps during the Vietnam era, he returned to San Francisco State University where he earned a Master’s Degree.  With the G.I. Bill, he honed his skills as he secured a M.F.A. from the University of Iowa and set about the world to enrich his life experiences.  While lingering in Cuba, he gained a perspective for his first novel, “Papa and Fidel.”     Recently, his most popular novel, “Time After Time,” has been reprinted by Tor Books in paperback format.  Not only has this novel found its way to the screen, but also as a musical which opened last spring at the Pittsburgh Playhouse.  “Jaclyn The Ripper,” the sequel to a 1979 novel, had made its appearance in 2009 to amazing reviews. To the list of his credits, Alexander has optioned ten screenplays, written two television pilots for NBC, and has published five novels. Opening the evening will be club favorite, Greg Elliot, with a mini-grammar session. Elliot is a past president of the club, a writing professor at UCLA, and a noted grammarian who makes complicated problems easy to understand. The meetings begin promptly at 7 PM...

Read More

1st Annual Ridge to River Contest

1st Annual Ridge to River Contest   1st Prize is $100, an Osprey pack and publication. 2nd prize is a gift certificate for La Sportiva Mountain Running Shoes and publication.   Adventum, a new biannual online literary magazine, welcomes the finest contemporary outdoor adventure writing from new and established writers, as well as seasonal haiku and high quality digital photography. Accepts creative nonfiction, essays, and memoir pieces of no more than 5,000 words that explore some aspect of personal experience in the outdoors. Entry fee: $5. Deadline: May 30th, 2011 See www.AdventumMagazine.com for...

Read More

VIP “STAGE & SCREEN” WRITERS PACKAGE OFFERED DURING OJAI WORDFEST

Dream Weekend Designed for Aspiring Screenwriters and Playwrights Ojai, CA (February 25, 2011) Ojai has been attracting authors and writers to its mountain valley for centuries. Its newest attraction, WordFest-a nexus of diverse reading and writing events held over nine days in March-is announcing the latest addition to its robust lineup: a VIP ‘Stage & Screen’ Writers Package. Held the last weekend of Ojai WordFest (Friday-Sunday, March 25-27) and presented by Ojai Writers Conference, the exclusive weekend symposium is for writers-beginners & advanced-who want to make their mark in “Hollywood” or have a career in the entertainment industry and are ready to take their writing to the next level. Writers will enjoy three days of “Literary Decadence” from developing their craft under the skillful guidance of some of the world’s most distinguished writing teachers to VIP tickets to a celebrity-studded theatrical performance to a private salon held in the home of Hollywood’s #1 Script Consultant. Highlights of the exclusive VIP writers weekend package include: Three days of writing classes-focused on creating material for screen and stage-taught by internationally distinguished writing experts: Ellen Sandler, Emmy-nominated Co-Executive Producer of Everybody Loves Raymond, playwright and author of The TV Writer’s Workbook (UCLA, USC and NYU film schools’ textbook); Dara Marks, PhD, author of Inside Story: The Power of the Transformational Arc and leading international script consultant whose unique method of story analysis has earned her top ratings by Creative Screenwriting Magazine as the best consultant in the business; and renowned writing teacher, playwright and Artistic Director of Theater 150 in Ojai, Deb Norton. Special screening of the award-winning short film, Angel Passing, starring Hume Cronyn, Calista Flockhart and Teresa Wright, followed by a Q&A with the film’s screenwriter and award-winning playwright, Catherine Ann Jones. A luncheon with international best-selling authors and Ojai residents: Byron Katie, founder of The Work; David Allen, widely recognized as the world’s leading authority on personal and organizational productivity whom Forbes’ recognized as one of the top five executive coaches in the United States; and Jacqueline Winspear, a mystery novelist whose Maisie Dobbs series is a New York Times best-seller. The exclusive luncheon will be held at The Ranch House-Ojai’s world famous fine dining establishment Paul Newman called “the best restaurant in the world.” A favorite among the lights of the literary and entertainment world, the restaurant is regarded to have one of the finest wine lists on the planet and was featured on Food Network as the “top pick in the nation” by a master chef. The apex of the weekend’s activities includes a private salon at the home of Hollywood’s top script guru, Dara Marks, who along with writing teaching expert Deb Norton, will guide students...

Read More

The “Write” of Spring Tweet Writing Contest

With a nod to spring, Writing.com has partnered with Gotham Writers’ Workshop to present a Tweet Writing Contest. Following the Twitter craze, we challenge you to dazzle us with a piece of writing that is no more than 140 characters (characters = letters, punctuation marks, and spaces). You may write on any topic and use any form—fiction, nonfiction, or poetry. As Strunk and White say, “Vigorous writing is concise.” Here’s an example, a work of “microfiction” by Ana Maria Shua: I have nothing against fried eggs. They’re the ones who look at me with amazement, terrified, wide-eyed. The winning tweet will be published in the next Gotham catalog and online at WritingClasses.com. The author will receive a free 10-Week Writing Workshop and a Writing.com membership. And we’ll also post some of the leading entries on Gotham’s Twitter page: www.twitter.com/gothamwriters. To Enter Write about any topic in 140 characters or less. Entry is free. Enter online below. Entries must be submitted by April 24, 2011. GWW reserves the right to publish the winning entry in printed and electronic formats. Limit one entry per person. Visit the website for details:...

Read More

Last Call! National Grammar Day Short Story Contest

Submit a Short Story We’re having a National Grammar Day short story contest! The winner will have his or her story read on the Grammar Girl podcast on National Grammar Day, and the story will appear on the Grammar Girl website. The winner will also receive my only-used-once-and-returned-to-factory-condition iPod Shuffle (woohoo!) and a handwritten thank-you note. If I can figure out how to load a congratulatory message on the Shuffle, you’ll get that too. And glory. There will be glory. Here are the rules, such as they are: Do not exceed 1000 words. I’m looking for a short piece of fiction that somehow incorporates National Grammar Day or some other grammar theme. Keep in mind that the story will be the Grammar Girl podcast and article for National Grammar Day, so it needs to be appropriate for that purpose. No foul language or excessive violence. (Fowl language? That’s fine.) Use proper grammar. Make me laugh. The deadline is February 28, 2011, and the winner will be announced in the March 4 podcast Visit the website for details:...

Read More