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Peer Groups


Group Topic Descriptions

To register for the second round of 2010 NUEA peer groups, click here . Registration is open through October 1, and details are listed in the registration site. If you have any questions, feel free to contact Jackie at .

 

PEER GROUP: TV WRITERS' ROUND TABLE: ONE-HOURS

DESCRIPTION: Structured around table reads, this peer group will provide writers an opportunity to hear their work read out loud and get feedback on their writing from other members of the group. The group will consist of four meetings. We will have one introductory meeting where we get acquainted, and three table readings of one-hour television scripts. We will cast around the table for the three table reads, and the group will give notes on the material.

PEER GROUP LEADER: ERICA SHELTON

PEER GROUP LEADER BIO: ERICA SHELTON is currently a writer/producer on the TNT drama series HawthoRNe, starring Jada Pinkett Smith.  Her career as a TV writer began on the Jerry Bruckheimer crime series, CSI: New York.  Erica then added the legal series Close to Home and Cold Case to her growing list of credits.

Erica's passion for writing crystallized at Northwestern University, where she earned a Bachelor's degree from the School of Communication.  After working at PBS affiliate, WTTW Channel 11 - Chicago.  She worked on numerous shows at WTTW, including Sneak Previews, a movie review show with critics Michael Medved and Jeffrey Lyons and Chicago Tonight, a news analysis program featuring John Callaway and noteworthy guests such as Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton and former senator Carole Moseley Braun.

Erica moved to Los Angeles when she was awarded the Courtney and Stephen J. Ross Fellowship at the University of Southern California. As a Ross fellow, Erica sat on the film school's diversity committee and trained with seasoned film and television writers like Len Schrader (Kiss of the Spider Woman), Pamela Douglas (Frank's Place) and David Hollander, (The Guardian, The Cleaner).  While earning her degree, Erica also developed a creative writing program for students in East Hampton, New York. After receiving her M.F.A. in Screenwriting, Erica went on to become a recipient of the Fox Writers Initiative Fellowship.

Erica lives in Los Angeles and is a member of the Writers Guild of America. 

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PEER GROUP: SITCOM WRITING

DESCRIPTION: This peer group is all about breaking into and writing for sitcoms. How do you get a job as a writer's PA or writer's assistant? What is a staff writing job really like, and how is the writer's room different for a sitcom than for a one-hour show? Is it more important to have a spec or an original pilot to submit to an agent or for a job? We will cover the nuts and bolts of the sitcom writing world in the first two sessions, and in the last meeting, we will review group members' portfolios and give feedback on them.

PEER GROUP LEADER: MARIA FERRARI

PEER GROUP LEADER BIO: MARIA FERRARI is a writer-producer on "The Big Bang Theory."  Her previous credits include "The Bill Engvall Show," "How I Met Your Mother," and "Blue Collar TV."  Maria graduated from NU's Creative Writing for the Media Program in 2001.

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PEER GROUP: FASTER THAN A SPEEDING BULLET:  IGNITING YOUR IDEAS TO GRAB FILM INDUSTRY INTEREST

DESCRIPTION: In our first meeting, we'll begin discussing the oldest profession in the world - storyteller. From cave man to  modern man we've been fascinated by stories. Our focus is film concepts. As George Lucas says, "A movie is a success or failure from the minute you solidify the concept. Execution is 50 percent. It is the primal attachment to the concept that makes the movie work or not work." Then we'll turn our focus to what makes the best possible movie idea for you. For our next get together, you'll bring 10 new ideas and we'll look at ways to target the concepts that can catapult your career. I'll share my Pitch Pointers and soon you'll be on your feet pitching, a fast track to developing story.  Then you'll head off to refine your ideas. In our final session, we'll look at your top contenders and hone in on the right idea for you to write next. To wrap things up, we'll play my one of a kind idea generating game to keep the creative process fun and the ideas flowing.

PEER GROUP LEADER: BARRI EVINS

PEER GROUP LEADER BIO: BARRI EVINS is a successful film producer and sought after screenwriting teacher. As a producer, she's sold pitches and specs to all the majors.  She shares the same techniques she uses with the pros to get new screenwriters further faster. Students of Barri's BIG Ideas Screenwriting Seminar have won contests, gotten representation and sold a pitch in just four hours for six figures!  Barri's BIG Ideas Screenwriting Seminar gets straight down to what works, because in the film business what works is all that matters.

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PEER GROUP: INS AND OUTS OF TV PROGRAMMING AND DEVELOPMENT

DESCRIPTION: This group will explore the ins and outs of TV programming and development, from building and developing a full programming slate to a breakdown of the TV development hierarchy and the pitching and development processes on the network and cable level.

PEER GROUP LEADER: CRAIG ERWICH

PEER GROUP LEADER BIO: CRAIG ERWICH is the Executive Vice President of Warner Horizon Television. Previously, he had worked at Fox Broadcasting for 12 years, most recently as the Executive Vice President of Programming. Craig graduated from Northwestern University in 1989.

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PEER GROUP: YOU SHOULD DO VOICEOVER

DESCRIPTION: This NUEA Peer Group provides a tasty sample platter introduction to the world of VO -- a combination of nuts and bolts information, beginning to work with copy and how to approach having a VO career. In the first session, we'll do an overview of the VO world and the many ways you can be making money using your voice (commercials, animation, promo/trailer, narration, audiobook, ADR, video games, etc.) and applying your skills as an actor to the medium of VO. In the second session, we will explore working on material, getting a taste of breaking down a script and bringing yourself to it, and the fundamentals of mic technique and booth etiquette. The third session will be a practical guide to getting started and getting you on your way to the start of a career in VO!

PEER GROUP LEADER: TISH HICKS

PEER GROUP LEADER BIO: TISH HICKS has been a successful voice over actor in Los Angeles for over fifteen years. She was the voice of Citibank for six of them, breaking ground for female voice over in the financial sector, and has been a part of many other campaigns including Alamo, Burger King, California Cheese, ELoan, HP to start at the top of the alphabet.  Listen for her currently on Subaru, Clorox and Pop Secret spots. Her experience covers a wide range of the voice over world-- animation, narration, video games, audiobooks, promo/trailer, adr. She has been blessed to work with some of the best in the biz and looks forward to sharing some insights into this lovely and seemingly elusive part of the industry.

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PEER GROUP: MARKETING AND LEGITIMIZING YOUR BRAND

DESCRIPTION: This two-part peer group will explore ways to develop a legitimate brand and online marketing presence for your business or yourself. During the first session, we will review the history of internet, social media, and how brands can utilize these as resources. Whether you're branding yourself or a business, we'll review the primary strategies to creating a consistent, legitimate identity to present to clients, customers, or whoever else you may be "selling" to. Lastly, we will put together an action plan to start shaping your marketing strategy between peer group meetings. During the second session, we will review and evaluate your progress, help you work through any rough spots you hit between meetings, and polish your plan to take out to your audience!

PEER GROUP LEADER: KEVIN SELDON

PEER GROUP LEADER BIO: KEVIN SELDON, a Northwestern University graduate, is a leading cause-marketing consultant, creative producer, and branding strategist. Since 2004, Seldon has elevated top corporate and non-profit clients by developing integrated brand enrichment and customized impact-marketing campaigns from conception to execution.

Through his firm, Keldof Marketing, Seldon delivers high-impact, viral brand buzz and customer loyalty programs that integrate social media, creative advertising, promotional partnerships, viral content creation & seeding, first-to-market strategic partnerships and much more. Past and current clients/partners include Vanity Fair Magazine, St Jude Children's Research Hospital, Grammy Award Winning Musical Group: The Roots, Rock The Vote, NBC Universal and more. For more information, visit:   www.keldof.com.

 

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