Blogs by Suzanne Kelman

Sue the Screenwriter: A Writing Retreat/Staycation on Whidbey Island

by Suzanne Kelman in Blogs

One of the most wonderful things about being a writer is being able to write from home, and one of the most challenging things about being a writer is writing from home!

Anyone who works from home knows exactly what I’m talking about. Yes, we love getting up, working in our PJ’s on our own schedule, writing when and where we want, and even with the pressure of a deadline, it’s pleasant to tackle it from your sofa. But the challenge of writing from home is that your house is not always the best environment for working because so many other things often get in the way to challenge your day. Animals that want my love and think lying across my keyboard is the best place to garner it, also, family members and household needs to take care of, kind friends who stop by believing you might need some company, or even the UPS man can be enough to knock off your writing rhythm for the day.

So, with a need to get ahead on my latest word count, I decided to go on a writing retreat for four days with two other writers.

Sue the Screenwriter: It Takes a Village to Launch a Book

by Suzanne Kelman in Blogs, Humor, Literary

Yes, I do love living in a small town. I love everything about a community that works together to support local artists. I also believe in keeping local money in our own communities whenever we can. So, it was an easy decision when I came to launching my next book, “Rejected Writers Take the Stage,” to have a party downtown, especially as my book is set in Langley!

It’s always exciting for authors to get their hands on the first copy of their work. I don’t know about other writers, but it always makes me cry. It is as if all those electronic manuscripts, internet emails, and flat graphic covers are a fantasy until you actually hold that work in your hand as a physical book.

Sue the Screenwriter || Calling All Storytellers

by Suzanne Kelman in Blogs, Literary

As a comedy writer, most of the time I don’t give much thought to the loftier call of storytelling. Most of my writing life is taken up with all the fundamental moving parts of crafting the story itself. However, it has really struck me over the last few months that there is also value in storytelling as a balm that holds great significance in our everyday lives.

When Toni Morrison felt like many of us do now, a friend told her. “This is precisely the time when artists go to work. There is no time for despair, no place for self-pity, no need for silence, no room for fear. We speak, we write, we do language. That is how civilizations heal.”

Sue the Screenwriter || Ringing in the New

by Suzanne Kelman in Blogs, Community, Feature, History

As a writer, I love research. It always brings me great joy to spend some of my day cruising the internet as part of a day’s work. Having just finished book two in my Rejected Writers book series, “The Rejected Writers Take the Stage,” I was doing research for book three, which takes place during the holidays. I came across something fascinating: all the different ways around the world that people celebrate the new year.

Sue the Screenwriter || Autumn and Authors

by Suzanne Kelman in Blogs, Literary, Travel

I decided it was time for a well-earned rest, and what my worn-out brain needed was color and literacy. Joining a good friend of mine, Eric Mulholland, on the East Coast, we decided to go on a road trip, visit some of my favorite authors’ homes, and see the leaves change color along the way.

Sue the Screenwriter || Hi Ho, Hi Ho—It’s Off the Island I Go!

by Suzanne Kelman in Blogs, Humor, Literary, Travel

So I have some exciting news to share. My second book in my “Rejected Writers’ Book Club” series has just been acquired by Lake Union Publishing.

Sue the Screenwriter || Outliners and Outlawers, Please Start Your Engines!

by Suzanne Kelman in Blogs, Literary

Oh, the good old summertime. The bees are buzzing, the birds are chirping and the cotton is high. Apparently—I definitely have a stack of washing, that’s for sure.

Sue the Screenwriter || How to Make ’em Laff: Free-Falling into Funny!

by Suzanne Kelman in Blogs, Feature

I actually didn’t set out to write comedy

Sue the Screenwriter || Here She Blows!!! … again!

by Suzanne Kelman in Blogs, Feature, Humor, Literary

So here it is—the grand push, the leap over the edge, the big kahuna. We are on the countdown as my book “The Rejected Writers’ Book Club” goes out into the world…again!

Sue the Screenwriter || Be creative—but don’t forget your hard hat: Five lessons I learned from Hedgebrook

by Suzanne Kelman in Blogs, Literary

I had a very wonderful experience when I was invited to Hedgebrook by the amazing staff to teach. In return, I had the use of a cottage in the woods with all my meals prepared for six days.

Sue the Screenwriter || And the Winner is… My Academy Adventure

by Suzanne Kelman in Blogs, Theater and Dance

It’s a pretty exciting day when you get a call from the Academy of Motion Pictures.

And I was knee-deep in planting bulbs in the garden when it happened. I stood there in my black fleece and my red polka dot wellies, a plant tray in one hand and the Academy in the other. Well, not the whole Academy because they wouldn’t fit.

Sue the Screenwriter || Memoirs from the Ledge of ‘Oh, how in the Heck did I Get here’

by Suzanne Kelman in Blogs, Literary

Many of us who are ‘creatives’ know the challenge it can be to make a living doing what we love, which is, of course, making art. Some artists take on jobs outside their home to subsidize their art “habit.” I take on multiple writing and film producing assignments in the hope that one of my ships will come happily sailing home.

Sue the Screenwriter || Kelman on the Carpet at Cannes

by Suzanne Kelman in Blogs, Literary, Theater and Dance

So I had the incredible opportunity to attend the 68th Cannes Film Festival last month to support the film “Our Father,” of which I am an associate producer. But my experience wasn’t quite what I had expected, or what I had seen on “E!”

Sue the Screenwriter || Screenwriting, Pies and Twirling with Sheep

by Suzanne Kelman in Blogs, Literary

During the Whidbey Island Writers Conference, I had the good fortune to meet and interview the delightful Chantelle Aimee, who took the time out from her weekend’s busy teaching schedule to share her thoughts on screenwriting.

The five things I’ve learned about writing from watching Downton Abbey

by Suzanne Kelman in Blogs, Literary

t’s the beginning of 2015; for some of you that means renewed exercise or healthier eating practices. Or maybe you’re planning on finally writing that book or screenplay. For me it is all about the return of my favorite British period drama: Downton Abbey, which follows an upper crust household now in the 1930s.

The Joy of Rejection: Suzanne Kelman

by Suzanne Kelman in Feature, Humor, Literary, More Stories

Walking into Suzanne Kelman’s home is like walking into a Mary Englebreit drawing. Warmth permeates every corner. Plaid couches, colorful rugs, and sweet-smelling candles form a kaleidoscope of color, scent and pattern. Everything in the house feels well-loved and welcoming.

Sue the Screenwriter | You can’t miss the road less traveled; it’s third on the left with the dark winding pathways, occasional sinkholes, and very unexpected twists and turns

by Suzanne Kelman in Blogs, Humor, Literary

Three weeks ago I actually got to hold that newborn book: “The Rejected Writers Book Club.” It was all sexy in its brand new glossy cover, and I couldn’t believe how proud I was of it. I had done it, finished something I hoped would help fund my screenwriting career.

Sue the Screenwriter | The Curious Business of Writing

by Suzanne Kelman in Blogs, Literary

Being a writer is a curious business. I have just completed a 67’000-word novel. Yes, I said 67’000 words. I had to write it twice, because I felt every one of those words—and I’m in shock. I’m in shock because I’m not a writer.

I started writing by accident, or necessity or some other twist of fate, but definitely not on purpose—a bit like in the movie “Forest Gump.”

Sue the Screenwriter | From Script to Screen: The journey of ‘Our Father’

by Suzanne Kelman in Blogs, Theater and Dance

As a storyteller, I have the privilege of telling stories, and as a filmmaker, I have the pleasure of telling stories in lots of unique and interesting ways. Over the last couple of months I have had the opportunity to create a story from a different perspective.

Screenwriter Bob Nelson to Attend March 16 Screening of ‘Nebraska’ at The Clyde in Langley

by Suzanne Kelman in Feature, More Stories, Theater and Dance

Whidbey local, Bob Nelson, the winner of an Independent Spirit Award and nominee for a screenwriting Academy Award for “Nebraska,” will appear at the March 16 screening of ‘Nebraska’ at The Clyde in Langley

Sue the Screenwriter | From Script to Screen—A Local Writer’s Ten Year Journey to the Oscars

by Suzanne Kelman in More Stories, Spotlight, Visual Art

Walking the Red Carpet in Hollywood is a long way from Bob Nelson’s usual writing routine when he’s at home in Freeland, Washington.

Sue the Screenwriter | A screenplay adventure with Superbloggers!

by Suzanne Kelman in Blogs

What! You mean worse than trying to lug defrosted water to 30 goats on a November morning and then… trying to milk them?

Sue the Screenwriter cheers on indie filmmakers

by Suzanne Kelman in Blogs, Literary

Another reason I love indies is because I always feel I’m an active collaborator in the production process.

Sue the Screenwriter pays tribute to a TV actor and childhood influence

by Suzanne Kelman in Blogs

And that’s what The Walton’s series represented to me, storytelling at its purest form.

Sue the Screenwriter on how to keep up a writing schedule when the sun is calling your name

by Suzanne Kelman in Blogs, Theater and Dance

So, I thought as the weather continues to warm and try its best to lure us away from our typewriters, computers and writing desks, I would share the rules of writing that keep me on track.

Sue the Screenwriter can’t resist the spark of a good story

by Suzanne Kelman in Blogs

Maybe you have story ideas, or see pictures. Why not give screenwriting a go?

Sue the Screenwriter on sending her work off the cliff of judgement

by Suzanne Kelman in Blogs, Literary

When I was in my 20s, I had an incredible experience while I was working and living in Spain. I drove out to the lakes in mountains of southern Spain and leapt from a high cliff into the clear blue waters 20 feet below.

Sue the Screenwriter challenges the determination of spell check

by Suzanne Kelman in Blogs, Theater and Dance

I’m pretty sure the spell check on my computer is a Taurus. He can be bossy and stubborn and like a crazed English teacher, is forever underlining in green and red any word he doesn’t approve of.

Sue the Screenwriter on falling in ‘unreal’ love

by Suzanne Kelman in Blogs, Theater and Dance

I actually fell in love with one of my characters, an unreal person who came out of my head!

Sue the Screenwriter on the fight for characters

by Suzanne Kelman in Blogs, Theater and Dance

“Writing Partners – The Good, the Bad and the Ugly”

Sue the Screenwriter gives advice on what questions not to ask

by Suzanne Kelman in Blogs, Theater and Dance

Sometimes I find myself thinking that everyone else has a much more glamorous life than my own. I find this to be true of others when I tell them what I do.