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A Story of Covid-19, Persistence, and Love

My Facebook post from last week (October 29, 2020) had over 130 shares. It involved Allan Scott and The Queen’s Gambit recently released by Netflix to wonderful reviews (with a 100% Rotten Tomatoes- as of this publishing date.)

Facebook and other platforms have been dumped on a lot lately, and probably for good reason, and by Netflix, in particular, with its documentary, The Social Dilemma.

But this story is not about the shadow of Facebook. It is a sweet story. It shows the positive side of social tech and the human condition.

The First Post (October 29, 2020)

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Original Book Cover Art

32 years ago, writer-producer Allan Scott (Don’t Look Now), brought in a book by Walter Tevis (The Hustler, The Color of Money) about a young orphan who became a chess sensation. The heroine battled genius and alcoholism. It was an unforgettable read with a haunting central character. We optioned the material. Molly Ringwald (Pretty in Pink) loved the role; Bernardo Bertolucci (The Last Emperor) was brought in to direct. Allan wrote the script and would produce. We could never find a start date that worked for the actress and director and the movie fell apart. Now, all these years later, Allan Scott has gotten his movie made with different actors, writers, and directors. But it’s the same character, the same story, the same book. …


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Interview with Directors, Amy Ferris and Debra Engle

On October 26, Story Summit Writer’s School Directors, Amy Ferris and Debra Engle, announced their new live, online school with a compelling curriculum for the 4th quarter of 2020. Both Amy and Debra are celebrated authors in their own right and have a passion, as teachers and coaches, to unlock the writing gifts in their mentees while creating a plan of action designed to help them finish their projects.

The first three classes announced are a powerful and unique mix of craft, genre, and joy, including a weekend intensive What a Character with faculty member, Richard C. Morais, author of the international bestseller, The Hundred-Foot Journey; A Very Hallmark Holiday featuring legendary Hallmark producer, Anne Carlucci: and Telling the Truth, spearheaded by Amy and Debra, themselves, designed to aid women, especially, in their pursuit of authentic writing voices that connect with the reader and/or viewer. …


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Author of Hallmark’s A Christmas Card and Producer of Hallmark’s Magic Stocking Join Class

The Directors of the Story Summit Writer’s School, Amy Ferris and Debra Engle, announce that two new faculty members are joining A Very Hallmark Holiday writing class. “We are thrilled about this particular writing class,” says director, Debra Engle. “It’s for anyone who has dreamed about writing a Hallmark movie or a holiday romance …or just loves to watch them!”

The new faculty include writer Joany Kane and producer James Crawford.

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Joany Kane is the writer of The Christmas Card, which premiered on the Hallmark Channel in 2006 and broke all-time ratings records for the channel. …


Telling the Truth Writing Class

A team of professional writers help you grow authentic

“The truth will set you free, but first it will piss you off!” - Gloria Steinem

The Story Summit Writer’s School rolls out it’s inaugural week-long class this Monday, November 16. The Telling the Truth writing class includes an all star faculty that will be joining the live, on line event.

They include:

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Doors open after Thanksgiving for live, week-long event

“We are thrilled about this particular writing class,” says Writer’s School Director, Debra Engle. “It’s a week-long curriculum we’re calling A Very Hallmark Holiday. This live, online class begins on Monday, November 30 and continues to Friday, December 4. It’s for anyone who has dreamed about writing a Hallmark movie or a holiday romance …or just loves to watch them!”

“In all our courses,” says Amy Ferris, Director of the Writer’s School,“faculty members rotate according to their area of expertise, bringing you world-class instruction on every topic. Legendary producer, Anne Carlucci, is a key faculty member for A Very Hallmark Holiday. Not only has Anne produced Christmas-themed movies for Hallmark, but wedding movies, and Valentine movies, as well. …


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A one week, live online class in daytime or in the “Midnight Club”

The Story Summit Writer’s School kicks off their first Monday through Friday Class with a powerful, live event, Telling the Truth.

The five-day live class will take place for two hours each day from Monday, November 16 through Friday, November 20, 2020.

“It’s a funny thing about writing: If you bend, omit, or avoid the truth, your reader/viewer is likely to know,” says author and Director of the Story Summit Writer’s School, Amy Ferris. “And more important, you’ll know. Yet telling the truth can feel terrifying in memoir, biography, and other forms of non-fiction that rest on your willingness to be vulnerable. This class is all about being vulnerable: Exposing the truth, writing the truth, unleashing the truth, whether it is your story or someone else’s story, a story that needs to be told.


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Don Quixote features two unforgettable character portraits

Weekend Intensive Begins Saturday, November 7, 2020

The Story Summit Writer’s School kicks off with a powerful, live weekend intensive class entitled What a Character.

The two day live event will take place on the weekend of November 7 and November 8, 2020. If you want a deep dive into one of the four pillars of story — character — this could be the course you have been waiting for.

“In all our courses,” says Director of the Writer’s School, Debra Engle, “faculty members rotate according to their area of expertise, bringing you world-class instruction on every topic.”

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Richard C. Morais

Best selling author, Richard C. Morais, joins the expert team for What A Character. Richard is best known for his international best seller, The Hundred Foot Journey, featuring two indelible characters — Madame Mallory and Hassan Haji (Kaddam in the film.) …


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Directors, Amy Ferris and Debra Engle, Announce Curriculum

Fresh off a successful Story Summit in Cape Cod with 85 writers in attendance, the Story Summit today announces the start of its online Writer’s School with three major courses for the 4th quarter.

In the last several months, Amy Ferris and Debra Engle, the Directors of the Story Summit Writer’s School, have assembled an award winning faculty of professionals to teach live-only sessions.

“We believe live events connect more deeply with our writing students,” says Director Amy Ferris. “Our faculty was chosen not only because of their exemplar work but because they can communicate with clarity and compassion about their own writing experiences. …


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Annette Maxberry-Carrara and her husband, Jean Louis Carrara

Winner of the Moms@Work Scholarship

In late 2019, Annette Maxberry-Carrara, won the Moms@Work Scholarship for an early draft of her screenplay, Night Letter. This scholarship allowed her to attend our Story Summit without financial burden to her or her family.

While at the Summit in February 2020, Annette was mentored on her original screenplay by Tab Murphy, who worked with her one-on-one. “I was thrilled to be chosen for the Story Summit scholarship, especially to be personally mentored by Tab Murphy, one of the Academy Award nominated writers of Gorillas in the Mist and Disney’s Hunchback of Notre Dame.”

“The great thing about Annette is that she was anxious to make her script better and she was determined to do just that,” says mentor Tab Murphy. “Writers are chosen to attend the Summit not only because of their talent, but also because they have an interest in being heard. Annette was the perfect mentee.” …


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The first recipient of the Story Summit’s Dream On Award is walking on September 27, 2020 in support of emerging women writers

Susan P. Hunter, an author from Gallatin, Tennessee, won the Dream On Writing Scholarship from the Story Summit in November, 2019. The award is for a writer 50 or over who has a dream of bringing a story to life.

According to Dream On judge, Jeff Arch, Academy Award-nominated writer of Sleepless in Seattle, Susan Hunter’s 77 Letters: Operation Morale Booster: Vietnam has the potential “to hit the sweet spot between something highly commercial and deeply emotional.”

Along with 50 other emerging writers, Susan attended the Winter Story Summit in February 2020 to be inspired, informed, and encouraged by other professional writers, including Jeff Arch. Now, after several drafts, hard work, and razor-focused rewriting, 77 Letters is launching its US release. And on September 27, 2020, Susan Hunter, will be paying it forward by walking for emerging women writers so they, too, can attend future Story Summits. …

About

David Paul Kirkpatrick

Co-founder of MIT Center for Future Storytelling, President of Paramount Pictures, Production Chief of Walt Disney Studios, optimist, author and teacher.

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