Sunday, June 5, 2016

ATC's SUMMER READING SERIES

Everyone always asks why Australian actors are so good.  Come to the theatre and find out!  I'm very proud to have co-curated the Australian Theatre Company's Rehearsed Summer Reading Series.  Every WEDNESDAY in June you can see an incredible Australian play read by amazing Australian actors for FREE.  I'm directing the amazing PERMISSION TO SPIN on the 22nd of June.  Book your free ticket to any or all of the shows now.  It's going to be an amazing month of theatre not to be missed.

Sunday, May 1, 2016

WRITE YOUR NOTES BY HAND


In my Write A Novel in 10 Weeks course, I always have my students write, not type, their notes.  I've always believed hand writing connects you more deeply than tapping away on the old laptop.  Now someone has figured out why.  Check out this fantastic article from NPR and hopefully from here on in you will have more confidence in your hand scribbled wonderful notes.


Tuesday, April 12, 2016

NEED HELP WITH YOUR BOOK?

So you've written a book and you want to get it out there in the world.  But you're not sure if it's ready.  I offer consulting sessions to assess your structure, story, tone, writing skill and voice.  Email for pricing and availability.  

Thursday, March 31, 2016

WRITE AS IF NO ONE IS READING....

Several of my students are getting 'frozen' with their books.  Some call it writer's block, some say they don't know how to move forward or edit the next draft.  I say it's your EGO killing your book.  In a world obsessed with fame, everyone is very concerned with how well their books will do.  So when you are writing a book, you can't help but want it to be brilliant.  You can't help but want it to be a best seller and win the Pulitzer.  But those kind of thoughts are ruining you as a writer.  Writers write to tell a story.  A story that lives within you and can only be told by you.  You should never be writing a book to become rich or get interviewed by Oprah - you should be writing a book because you want to share your tale.  So on your next draft, just write the book the way it needs to be written and let go of its brilliance.  You may have several more drafts before it gets anywhere close to being brilliant and that's pretty normal.  Write as if only you are ever going to see it.  It will change the way you write.  It will stop you trying to be 'fancy' and 'literary' and just write the pure story - which is always more powerful.
 

Friday, July 3, 2015

Kelly's Hollywood

I'm very proud to be part Brian Donovan's documentary, Kelly's Hollywood.  It's about  a brother trying to make his diva sister's dream of becoming a Hollywood star come true.  All the while trying to keep his own life together.
I'm in it, along with some pretty awesome peeps - the Bee Gees, David Hasselhoff, Tony Horton, Jason Priestly and Colin Firth.  You can stream it on Vimeo for less than the cost of a coffee at Starbucks.  Enjoy - it's pretty amazing.

This is where you go to watch the full film:

Monday, June 29, 2015

EMBRACE YOUR ART - YOUR WAY - JUST LIKE CHARGAUX!

So I just came across the very cool duo, CHARGAUX.  Yes, they are the COOLEST.  I rarely buy music and I immediately got the whole album.  These girls are the bomb and they do things their way.  When writing, it's just as important to respect your own unique voice.  Let these girls inspire you and WRITE THE WAY YOU WANT TO!

FIVE TIPS FOR ASPIRING WRITERS

Below is my interview with UCLA Extension's wonderful Writers Program.  I teach my infamous 'Write a Novel in 10 Weeks' there and absolutely love it.  Great program, great staff and fabulous students.  In the interview you get some of my top tips.

SIGN UP FOR CLASS HERE



New-to-the-Wp’ instructor Tempany Deckert is one of those multitalented artists that is blessed with the ability to both write well and speak well. In addition to being an author of 18 middle grade and young adult novels, she is also a formally trained actress and motivational speaker. And while she won’t teach you to recite Shakespeare or speak to a crowd of hundreds, in her fall course she will guide you through completing a novel in 10 weeks (no easy feat). Read on to learn more about Tempany, writing quickly, and the joy of working with an editor.
Writers’ Program: Tell us how you first got into writing. Did you know from the beginning that you wanted to be a novelist, or did you dabble in other forms before it clicked?
Tempany Deckert: At 13 I was extremely lucky to join a ‘gifted’ young writers group. Not only did we skip regular school to write and listen to each others’ stories, we also met professional novelists who showed us how they worked. It was very inspiring and illuminating to see into the professional world of a novelist at such a young age. But I was told in school that creative writing was not a real job so I abandoned the idea and became a professional actress. A much more secure profession! It wasn’t until a short playwriting course appeared within my acting school curriculum that writing came back into my life. From there I’ve never stopped. Novels are my main genre but occasionally I write plays, screenplays and animated TV scripts.
Wp': In your fall course, you’ll be guiding students through the process of writing a novel in 10 weeks. How do you approach what seems like an impossible and daunting task?
TD: Writing a novel is seen as a very romantic endeavor, and that is why so many people rarely complete one. It’s really about having a plan, sticking to it, and not quitting. It’s a bullheaded, fearless and determined dive into the unknown. My exercises, homework and structure make sure you don’t get lost and give up when writing no longer feels ‘romantic’. It’s very much like renovating a house–many of the activities are creative and satisfying, but several are horrible, boring, hard and exhausting. I’m the project manager who keeps you going when the going gets tough.
Wp': As a prolific writer, how do you know when a novel is “done”?
TD: It’s done when I can no longer work on it and it bores me to tears. This is also why I encourage new writers to write fast. If you spend years on a book, you will often lose interest and find it hard to complete. I also always give myself a time frame to complete my work. That makes me write to a deadline and doesn’t give me a chance to continuously rewrite. The fact of the matter is, a writer can always keep writing–it canalways be better. But you must release your work to the world and let it be shared. Plus, working with an editor is such a joy. I love editors! They bring to life elements of your book that were previously buried or confused. It’s lovely to collaborate after so much time writing on your own. You only get to experience working with an editor when you give up working by yourself. So that is also a great incentive to be ‘done’.
Wp': Do you ever miss your characters when you move on to the next project?
TD: I feel like all my characters continue to live on even when I’m not writing about them. I do miss them. Once I cried when I finished reading a book I’d written because I didn’t want the character to go away. Crazy and slightly embarrassing.
Wp': Who are some of the writers that inspire you most? Do you have any “go-tos” for inspiration?
TD: I love books and have several literary heroes. Chekov and Tolstoy are my oldies and Haruki Murakami, Lily Brett and Tom Robbins are consistent favorites. Lately I have been inspired by Maria Semple, Reif Larsen, Marisha Pessl, David Benioff, John Green and Markus Zusack. I am also very inspired by playwrights and think my friend, Martin McDonagh, is a modern master of the written word. Generally I love writers who have a nice little edge of comedy to their writing along with hopeful innocence.
If you have any questions about the course or would like general advising, please call the Writers’ Program at 310-825-9415.
SIGN UP FOR CLASS HERE
Katy Flaherty is the Program Representative for Creative Writing (Onsite). Write to her atkflaherty@uclaextension.edu.