THE FEBRUARY CHALLENGE: HAVE A “HEART”

Writing Prompts are effective triggers to get your writing-engine going! Use them as an exercise to start your day, a vehicle to get out of a rut, or an idea to spark a new project. In honor of American Heart Month, the February Challenge is to write a story or essay, based on the writing prompt: “Heart.”

PRIZES
1st Place: A medium-length (or 21,000 word) one-reader iScript. Plus, your story will be published on Write On! Online

2nd Place: Writing the Romantic Comedy by Billy Mernit, compliments of The Writers Store

3rd Place: Writing, Publishing, and Marketing – You Can Do It! by Karen Cioffi and Cherished Pulse: Unconventional Love Poetry by Magdalena Ball & Carolyn Howard-Johnson. Courtesy of VBT-Writers on the Move

Submit 200 to 400 words, using the writing prompt “Heart,” in the body of an email to debra@writeononline.com by Sunday, February 28. Winners will be announced on Tuesday, March 9, 2010, in the March Write On! Newsletter.

Write On! Online’s monthly contests are designed to encourage you to give those writing muscles a workout.

NEWS
Congratulations to the Winners of the Write On! Online January Challenge: Review Yourself!

1st Place: David Cook – Review of his short film: Board Games

2nd Place: Cara Holman – Review of her short story: “The Ten Best Things” in Chicken Soup for the Soul: Count Your Blessings

3rd Place: David King – Review of his blog: The Learning Garden (Almost) Daily

The 1st Place Review by David Cook – of his short film:  Board Gamesis posted on Write On! Online!

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Congratulations to Monica Warden, February winner for posting goals. Post your March goals on Write On! Online and be entered in the monthly drawing to win a FREE iScript. (An iScript is a professionally recorded audio version of a screenplay or novel read by professional readers, similar to an audiobook.)
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Thanks, Shannon Flaherty, for featuring me on Hustle Up. Interested in sharing your Hustle? Contact Shannon: info@shannonflaherty.com

I have received several requests to lead another workshop on Marketing through Blogging and Social Networking in Los Angeles. If you are interested in this class, email debra@writeononline.com, so I can find a time that works for everyone. I also lead workshops on Breaking through Writers Block, Goals Setting & Productivity, and Personal Essay & Article Writing.

New! Workshops for tweens and teens, designed to help develop a love of writing : www.PurplePencilAdventures.com.
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Ask Al A Carte (aka Alexandra Anne Carte) is collecting food memories for her upcoming ebook. Send your favorite story – along with a recipe if you have it. You can even include a photo! Send to askalacarte@cs.com. By submitting, you are giving permission for your essay to be published. Deadline is March 14, 2010!

Poetry Alert: If you’re a creative person and you’re looking for something to get your mother this Mother’s Day, why not write a poem and include it in a special Mother’s Day anthology? While your at it, learn first-hand about the process of publishing a book, even make some of the most important nit-picky decisions. For more information, contact Heather Paye: the_jewelonsolot@msn.com

The Mystic Pete Chronicles seeks “Tales of Love and Madness” for the radio program. Details here.

Interested in humor-writing? Check out the free 50-minute interview Brad Schreiber did with The Writing Show on his book What Are You Laughing At?

Save the Date: Martha Burns will be signing her book – Belly Dance: Celebrating the Sacred Feminine – at Village Books in Pacific Palisades on Monday, March 15. For a peek behind Martha’s story, read the Write On! Author Q&A.

In the February/March Issue of Whole Life Times, Maria Fotopoulos has an article about eco-smart vehicles for 2010. Read her article – and the rest of the issue – online.

Shanta Payne’s second writing effort, Nose Candy, will be on the big screen at the Pan African Film Festival at Culver City Plaza Theatres on Thursday, February 11, at 1:30pm and Friday, February 12, at 5:00pm. Congrats, Shanta!

Congratulations to John Paul Rice and No Restrictions Entertainment: One Hour Fantasy Girl is ranked #328 (out of more than 40,00 titles) on Amazon Video On Demand. Write On! interviewed screenwriter Edgar Michael Bravo last summer. Read the interview here. No Restrictions is now in post production on their second feature The Magic Stone, a supernatural/psychological thriller. Become a Fan on Facebook for more information, including video clips, press, and photos!

Check out the February VBT – Writers on the Move Tour for info, articles, reviews, and more!

EVENTS
The next LA Mediabistro Party will be on Tuesday, February 23rd at Haute, 665 North Robertson Boulevard, in West Hollywood. RSVP here.

Another Poetry Alert: Musician Danny Moynahan will be performing at The Talking Stick, 1411 Lincoln Blvd. Venice, 90291, on Tuesday, February 9, from 7pm to 10pm. Poet Ellyn Maybe will open at 7pm. Then… Danny, Austin, and Richard – piano, bass, and drums, and voices. Audience members are invited to write a poem with a potato theme. Bring it Tuesday and recite it while the band plays “The Potato Prophecy.” For more info, here’s the Facebook event link.

Author Mark David Gerson (interviewed on Write On! Online last August) will be speaking about Birthing your Book with Ease at the Conscious Life Expo on February 12th, 7pm,  at the LAX Hilton. You’ll find more info on the Expo web site.

Scriptwriters Network Presents “ROMANTIC COMEDY PANEL 2010” this Saturday, February 13, at Universal Studios Hollywood.

Michele Wallerstein will be speaking on “DO YOU HAVE WHAT IT TAKES TO MAKE IT IN HOLLYWOOD?” at the Scriptwriters Network event on February 20 from noon-2:30pm at CBS Radford in Studio City.

Check out all the fabulous writing-related events the Writers Guild Foundation has to offer, including the upcoming Anatomy of a Script Series, starting February 24.

Film Independent’s Directors Close-Up Series runs until March 3. Details here.

Coming up at The Writers Store in Los Angeles:

– February 16, 6:30 pm: Live Q&A with Oscar-Nominee Mark Boal, Screenwriter of The Hurt Locker.

– February 26, 6:00 pm: Pre-Oscar Bash and Discussion with the Authors of Michael Wiese Productions: Moderated by: Christopher Vogler, The Writer’s Journey: 3rd edition; Panelists: Marcie Begleiter, From Word to Image: 2nd edition; Michael Hauge, Selling Your Story in 60 Seconds and Writing Screenplays that Sell; Christopher Riley, The Hollywood Standard: 2nd edition; Gael Chandler, Cut by Cut: Editing Your Film or Video and Film Editing: Great Cuts Every Filmmaker and Movie Lover Must Know.

ONGOING
Want to hear your work read? AltScreenPlay meets on Thursdays 7:30 – 10 pm, at Beyond Baroque, 681 Venice Blvd., Venice, CA, and is moderated by Matt Byrnes, mbbyrnes@gmail.com. First reading starts at 8 pm; and readings begin in the order in which the author arrived. Bring 1-10 pages of your screenplay, and make enough copies for each role. No RSVP necessary. Feel free to sit in without bringing any material of your own.

The Los Angeles Public Library now has a Screenwriters Workshop four Saturdays a month at different branches, from 10:30 am – 12 pm, and every Sunday in the Farmers Market community room from 3 – 5 pm, hosted by Sasha Karova. Learn format and workshop original material (screenplays, 1/2 hour sitcom, and 1/2 hour and 1 hour episodic) with an open reading or read-through. Open reading is on a first-come, first-served basis. Please RSVP to WritersUnblock@aol.com.

Writers Boot Camp offers Write On! members a discount on enlistment. For more information, contact Christine Baroumand at 800-800-1733 ext. 313, or christine@writersbootcamp.com.

Meditation Friday Nights at The Learning Garden the 2nd Friday of the month. Meditation begins promptly at 8:00 pm. Please dress in layers and bring a blanket and cushion to sit on. Meditation lasts about 40 minutes around a fire in the peaceful surroundings of the Garden. Donations go to The Learning Garden. For more information contact Camille at (310) 382-4323.

WRITE ON!
Our March Meeting will be on Wednesday, March 10, 2010. Please have newsletter items to debra@writeononline.com by March 8.

Write On! Online Author Q&As are posted every Tuesday and Friday. Check out the columns posted since the last newsletter:

Judy Sandra, The Metal Girl

Kami Gray, The Denim Diet

Bonnie Gillespie, Self-Management for Actors

David Page, Yosemite & the Southern Sierra Nevada

Vivian Zabel,Midnight Hours, Prairie Dog Cowboy

Robert Nelson Jacobs, Extraordinary Measures

Published Authors: Share your knowledge by participating in a Write On! Q&A. Email debra@writeononline.com for more information. Also, if you have already participated in an Author Q&A, please keep us posted on current projects!

Also, here are links to the Write On! Columns posted since the last newsletter:

Write On! Engaging the Reader by script consultant Ginger Earle.

Jen’s Gems … for the Healthy Writer: Relax the Back by Seattle-based movement and fitness coach Jennifer Waak.

Techno Tools for Writers: Favorites from the Consumer Electronics Show by freelance writer Heidi Leder

FINAL NOTE
It’s Award Season! Congratulations to the Writers Guild Awards , Film Independent Spirit Awards, and Academy Award Nominees!

Good at picking the winners? Enter the StoryLink Oscar Contest! Details here.

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