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Moondance November News & Insider Tips: the Craft of Screenwriting!

LOTUS

Selected Moondance winning films have been invited to be screened the annual 2015 Canadian International Film & Television festival (CIFTF), which takes place in Richmond & Vancouver, BC, Canada, November 6-8th. Moondance winning films will be screened as a special Moondance Roadshow part of this important event, from November 8-10th. Many of the event’s attendees & invitees are from China, and include the director of the China Film Group in Beijing, who is responsible for all films produced or screened in China. Please consider attending the festival. This is your best chance to network with the powers-that-be in the lucrative Chinese film & television industry! All events and film screenings are free of charge.

CIFTF LEOPARD LOGO

Website: www.naimfs.org   Email: naimfs.org@hotmail.com

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THE CRAFT OF WRITING: EXTERNALIZING THE INTERNAL, PART 1

Award-Winning Screenwriter Jacob Krueger

http://www.writeyourscreenplay.com

The extraordinary thing about working in the medium of film is that we get to tell stories with compelling images that capture the imaginations and the emotions of our audiences. And the challenging thing about working in film is that half of the things that exist in the world, we can't see! We can't see thoughts and we can't see feelings.

And that means, as screenwriters, our job is to externalize these internal thoughts and feelings. To take them outside of the mind, and put them into the body and the action of our screenplay. To translate the emotional language of our writing into compelling and visceral action.

As one of my great mentors, Georgi Alexi-Meskhishvili, who is a world-renowned set designer, used to say, “If you want a director to do what you want, you must make him think it is his idea." And one of the ways we allow directors and producers to do what we want and connect and visualize our movies in the way that we want them to see them is by externalizing the internal: capturing our story in images exactly the way that we are seeing it in our heads.

Similarly, if you want to attract an A-list actor to your film, you need to learn to externalize the internal in a visceral way, so that you can capture their attention from the very first line, stimulate their imaginations, and allow them to see themselves doing all those exciting things that your character is doing, as if they were already playing the role! These are the practical reasons to externalize the internal.

But here is an even deeper artistic reason you want to externalize the internal, which is that often times when you're not externalizing the internal it's because you have not actually seen it yet in your own mind’s eye. Which means you are not yet fully serving your own creative vision of the movie, or getting your full talent onto the page. To understand how you can go about externalizing the internal in your own work, in this week's podcast, we're going to be looking at one of the best examples of this technique, There Will Be Blood.

ISA LOGO

International Screenwriters' Association

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MOONDANCERS WRITE US:

I wanted to thank you for the wonderful opportunity to screen a sneak preview of our film at Moondance. So many wonderful things came out of that screening. It was especially great to have Bill Ury, author of Getting to Yes, and Randy Compton, and Mark Gerzon, Author of American Citizen, Global Citizen: How Expanding Our Identities Makes Us Safer, Stronger, Wiser – And Builds a Better World. They were both very enthusiastic about the film and we look forward to further collaboration with them. We also loved all the great feedback we got on the Audience Comments forms: “I think it’s awesome”  “I love his story, mission, tenacity and love for the future!” “The world will be a better place because Garry was in it.”  “Needs to get out into the world. It will shift consciousness.”  “Like, it’s about time!” In addition to accolades, the audience feedback forms also gave us valuable suggestions for further improving our work-in-progress version.  -- which we incorporated into later edits of the film. Several funders also loved the film – we received important donations in Boulder – also building excellent prospects for the future. So again, thank you for who you are and all you do for the world.” ~ Arthur Kanegis, director of The World Is My Country

“I find these (Moondance news-blog) articles so helpful.  Thank you for caring enough to help us first-time screenwriters!” ~ Kentrell Liddell

“This is a very spiritual and moving newsletter. Congratulations! ~ Chris Nebe, award-winning documentary filmmaker, "Mysterious China" series

“If you hadn't recognised there was something of merit about my stageplay. “Stitched Up”, the production wouldn't have happened, so, on behalf of Mr Nibbs, Rags, their wonderful palace colleagues, and, of course, myself, many, many thanks for that.” ~ Celine Gibson, award-winning playwright, New Zealand

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DO A DOODLE!

By Lou Hamilton

DOODLE

A blank page and a pen is ripe territory for doodling and if you do it while your brain is apparently attending to something else, your ability to broaden your creative thoughts and ideas, make sense of and retain what you are listening to, is hugely increased. In decision-making, problem-solving and creative thinking we need to engage with at least two of the four learning processes: auditory, visual, reading/writing and kinetic. So in a lecture or in class or on the phone, where information density is high, doodling, simple shapes, mind-maps, grids, nothing tricky, but the act of doodling allows (one) to explore…thoughts, by placing words into the shapes has the benefit of exploiting…decision-making, problem-solving and creative thinking we need to engage with at least two of the four learning processes: auditory, visual, reading/writing and kinetic. Which is why (doodling) is so effective!

The shapes, along with your hand movements, stimulate parts of the brain that allow you to make connections between things that you otherwise would likely have never come up with. It helps you tap into your memory, your emotions, your desires, your intellect….a way of aiding learning, processing, problem-solving, creative thinking and remembering.

Sunni Brown, named one of the “100 Most Creative People in Business” and one of the “10 Most Creative People on Twitter” by Fast Company, is the leader of “The Doodle Revolution” the purpose of which is to “disrupt social norms about visual language and visual thinking, and educate people around the world about doodling’s power and potential.” Using deliberate pen strokes and a vocabulary of abstract patterns, artists and non-artists alike are equally able to focus on their marks with no pre-determined end result, while their attention shifts “to a state that allows fresh thoughts, new perspectives, and creative insights to flow unhindered by anxiety or effort.” Zentangle… is a form of combined doodling and meditation, devised by Maria Thomas and Rick Roberts in 2004 as an elegant system of structured patterns for zoning out. READ MORE

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MOONDANCE SUPPORTS & RECOMMENDS:

CHINA YELLOW RIVER FOUNDATION logo

"Yellow River Mother" sculpture, by HeE, Gansu

"Yellow River Mother" sculpture, by He E, Gansu

The Yellow River is called "the cradle of Chinese civilization", because its basin was the birthplace of ancient Chinese civilization, and is the third-longest river in Asia. Water is the source of ten thousand species, of rich and varied topography and biological species, and the feeding, nourishing, and our civilization. The river is the mother, nurturing the luxuriant creatures & is a natural parent. Human economic and social development has entered a new historical period, and river and water are faced with unprecedented crises and challenges. The Yellow River is one of several rivers that are essential for China's very existence.

We have a responsibility to have an obligation to action, with reason, courage and strong faith, to maintain the health of the Chinese mother river of life... maintaining river health, life, and river ethics. The CYRF makes the most of the advantages of this non-governmental organization, to promote Chinese civilization, inherit the Yellow River culture, take actions to protect the Mother River, and to involve more people in devoting their time and resources to the protection and maintenance of the endless life of the vital Yellow River. Our mission is: Carrying out regular activities toward the Yellow River protection, and to promote long-term maintenance of the healthy life of the Yellow River. The Yellow River is 5,464 kilometers long, with a total elevation drop of 4480 meters. READ MORE

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NATURE CONSERVANCY LOGO

A World Without Florida Panthers?

FLORIDA PANTHERS

They're the last of their kind! A mere 180 Florida panthers are all we have left. When we allow places like the Florida Everglades to be torn apart, whittled down and chopped up for commercial purposes, we all lose more than just our beloved landscapes. We lose the migratory pathways the Florida panther and many other animals depend on for survival. Without intact migration corridors, these great cats can't reach the additional habitat they need in order to survive as a species. They're trapped and isolated...with nowhere to go to establish healthy populations and thrive. These lands are critical to the recovery of this iconic species and a cornerstone in the plan to support their survival.

Your donation today will help The Nature Conservancy’s vital work to protect and create habitats for threatened animals like the Florida panther -- among too many others -- who are simply running out of time. You'll know that your dollars will be hard at work in endangered places like the Everglades. The Nature Conservancy is working to protect 18,529 acres of prime panther habitat that could help make a difference in securing their future. Thank you for helping to protect the lands and waters on which great migrations depend! http://www.nature.org

A World Without Sea Turtles?

Hawksbill Turtle

Hawksbill Turtle

Imagine travelling more than 1,000 miles, through danger and hunger and hardship...only to find your destination washed away. Too often, that's the fate waiting for hawksbill sea turtles at the end of their long migrations. They risk their lives only to find that their habitats have been destroyed and they're left with nowhere to go. It's a tragic end to an incredible journey. Today the Pacific nesting beaches hawksbills rely on are in grave danger. Development and sea level rise are shrinking them fast. And as the hawksbill populations are now a mere 20% of what they were 100 years ago, we have to fight for them to make sure that number doesn't get any lower.

The truth is sad and simple: if more nesting beaches continue to disappear...so will hawksbills. If you've ever seen a sea turtle swim, you know it's like flying under water. They coast along with so much grace, it would make anyone feel peaceful and calm. But their effortlessness hides one of the toughest survival stories on our planet. They're up against predators, poachers, developers, climate change, and so much more. These animals do everything they can to survive in such desperate conditions, and right now, they need our help. Your gift will help with hands-on conservation like: helping expand the network of protected beaches for hawksbills, bringing together communities to safeguard their beaches & creating more turtle conservation sites so they can finish their migrations in peace. http://www.nature.org

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SOME THINGS TO THINK ABOUT:

Artwork by Christopher David White

Sculpture by Christopher David White

“You do not make sculpture because you like wood. You make sculpture because the wood allows you to express something that another material does not allow you to do.” ~ Louise Bourgeois, French-American artist  (This quote can be extrapolated to include creative writing, filmmaking, music, dance, theater, & other arts)

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Mermaid figurehead by Jan Reichard

Mermaid figurehead by Jan Reichard

“Life is not a problem to be solved, but a reality to be experienced.” ~ Soren Kierkegaard

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HOPE QUOTE-LIN YITANG

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THE CATCH-22 OF ORIGINALITY:

"WOLF TOTEM", Director: Jean-Jacques Annaud

"WOLF TOTEM", Director: Jean-Jacques Annaud

Film audiences crave originality - or at least a fresh take - and so it seems do movie distributors. And yet film financiers tend toward the tried and tested. They want to back name actors, proven concepts and known quantities.” Hear from two leading film sales agents how they go about resolving that eternal contradiction: http://info.slated.com/the-catch-22-of-originality/

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STUDIO-TYPE COVERAGE OF YOUR SCRIPT OR FILM!

CHAMBERED NAUTILUS

7SEAS PRODUCTIONS

Ready to get your screenplay or film on the right track? 7seas Productions now offers script reading services, critiques, coverage and edits to all screenwriters, playwrights & filmmakers, and to production companies and agencies, at special discount prices!

Focusing on the elements crucial to creating a compelling and readable script, and/or a winning, marketable film, our helpful comments will allow you to concentrate on solving the problems that will make your material move toward receiving a CONSIDER or a RECOMMENDED from a studio or production company reader, and will assist in advancing your script or film up toward WINNER in screenwriting competitions & film festivals.

An advantage of this low-cost critique service is that we will help you prepare your screenplay before sending it to screenwriting competitions, film producers, agents, managers and others who may have requested it. READ MORE

7seas Productions annually produces the Moondance International Film Festival, and also offers film festival start-up consultations!

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MIFF WAVY FILM IMAGE BANNER

Please forward this news-blog to your creative artist colleagues!

 QUESTIONS OR COMMENTS?

moondancefestival@gmail.com

WEBSITE: www.moondancefilmfestival.com

BLOG: www.moondancefilmfestival.com/blog

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No trees or natural habitats were harmed in the creation of this news-blog!

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Moondance is Always the “Girl on the Right”!

BE THE GIRL ON THE RIGHT

At Moondance, we don’t just accept differences, innovations, creativity, independence, and uniqueness - we celebrate them, we support them, encourage & inspire them, and we thrive on them for the ultimate benefit of the international film industry, as well as for writers, filmmakers, composers, festival film audiences, and our world community.

READ ON:

  • 2015 Festival Photo album request
  • 2015 Awards requests
  • Moondance news
  • Tom Shadyac at Moondance
  • Moondancers write us
  • Screenwriting: ALL-CAPS on sounds?
  • Radio plays
  • Moondance recommends
  • Some things to think about
  • Rules for the blues

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The 2015 Moondance PHOTO ALBUM will be online soon!

 ONLY IF YOU send us up to 5 of your best Moondance 2015 photos in .jpg, to: director@moondancefilmfestival.com with MIFF PIX in the subject line.

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ATTENTION MOONDANCE 2015 WINNERS NOT AT THE AWARDS CEREMONY:

If you won an award, but could not attend the event, and want to receive your Moondance Award, Award certificate, & a 2015 Moondance festival program, please use this option to pay only for postage to send it to you:

AWARDS POSTAGE: USA ADDRESS POSTAGE: $10 • FOREIGN ADDRESS POSTAGE: $25 

The Moondance winners’ star award

The Moondance winners’ star award

Send your request now; this offer expires October 1.

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MOONDANCE NEWS:

FILMMAKERS: Moondance International Film Festival is now an IMDb Qualifying Festival, granting all eligible film submissions (via Withoutabox), a fast-tracked title page on IMDb.com!

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DRONE CAMERA

Moondance 2016 wishes to celebrate the art of DRONE CINEMATOGRAPHY with our newest competition category, and offers an international venue for talented & innovative drone filmmakers from around the world to exhibit their winning work to film industry professionals and to the drone cinema fan audiences, at this world-class film festival.

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Film director Tom Shadyac gave a fascinating Q&A at Moondance 2015 to an enthusiastic audience, participated in the productive networking & photo ops, and was presented with the Moondance 2015 Calypso Award!

Watch this video:

CELEBS FAVORITE PLACES ON EARTH: DOUBLE-WIDE: TOM SHADYAC'S LIFE NOW

SHADYAC V

Read this article on Oprah.com:

FROM MULTIMILLIONAIRE TO MOBILE HOME!

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MOONDANCERS WRITE US

“Let me know when the 2016 early, early, early-bird submissions can be sent. I'm itching to send you the "Sock Opera" feature screenplay. I love to write, but this is the first time I actually felt real joy when working on a project. Although animation is probably the most difficult category to break into, I think, after all these years, I may have found my bliss.” ~ Janice MacDonald, 2015 Moondance winner for “The Sock Opera” short musical screenplay

I am sorry to have missed the 2015 festival, but I see that it was a great success! It is a wonderful service you offer to new writers and filmmakers who are trying to find a way into their chosen profession. I - for one - feel that your input and help has given me the confidence to keep writing, so thank you once again!” ~ Liz Falconer, 2015 winner, short screenplay, “One Door Closes”

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PILE OF SCRIPTS

NOTE TO SCREENWRITERS: Please, please do NOT put noises & sounds in all-CAPS in your spec screenplay! That formatting is only for final production scripts, when the funding is in place & the Foley editor needs to know what sound effects to include. Your script should be, at this early stage, a reader's script. All-caps on sounds are very distracting from a smooth read. We certainly already know that a door SLAMS, a gun goes BANG, a dog BARKS, a lion ROARS, cars HONK or CRASH, FOOTSTEPS make a sound & so on! If you are seeing all-caps on sounds in scripts that you may be reading online, you are looking at director's scripts, or production scripts! To sell this sucker to an agent, actor, producer, director, funder, or distributor, it needs to read almost like a scripted novel. To send out a production script is egotistical, arrogant & un-professional, as if the film is already in production. I have passed on way too many otherwise pretty good spec scripts that are filled with all-caps sounds, in the festival competition. 

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RADIO PLAYS ARE MIND-MOVIES!

RADIO:VINTAGE

Radio is sometimes known as the writer's favorite medium; as Malcolm Bradbury once said, it is "a world made with words shaped into being, without a physical presence." With radio, you have to use your imagination - something you don't need when watching TV or movies. We can be whom-ever we want to be, travel wherever we want to go; all in "our mind's eye", thanks to radio programs. The stories and scenarios are often planted forever in our memories and in our own personal "theatre of the mind".

Radio drama has long been a fertile training ground for writers and is a genre in which screenwriters, playwrights and television writers feel at home. It has given voice to generations of writers. From Welsh poet Dylan Thomas and Irish writer Samuel Beckett to Orson Welles and American playwright Harold Pinter; all have been involved with radio drama.

Moondance includes audio drama in our competition categories not merely in order to get the attention of the film industry. We want to promote audio drama for it's own cultural value, and to encourage writers, storytellers, musicians/composers, audio producers, voice actors & others to create new works for radio & digital listening...whether it's drama, comedy, kids' stories, news & info, or documentary, and getting people to use their imaginations, to see the story in their minds, & to visualize, rather than have it shown to them in film, on their digital devices, online, or on TV, while they just sit there, being only consumers, rather than being creators or using their imagination to visualize the story! Consider learning how to write for radio, and revising your screenplay into an audio play! Moondance is dedicated to ensuring that audio drama remains an integral and dynamic part of our international broadcasting and cultural heritage.
 MORE INFO: theaudiodramadirectory.com/ • www.audio-drama.com/www.artc.org/‎audiodramaproduction.com/ • jimfrenchproductions.com/

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MOONDANCE RECOMMENDS

FRIENDS OF THE EARTH IMAGE

Friends of the Earth understands that the challenges facing our planet call for more than half-measures, so we push for radical change, not tweaks to the status quo. This means speaking uncomfortable truths to power and demanding more than people think is possible. It's hard work. That’s why we’re dedicated to building and organizing a workforce for Earth. Earth H.Q. is an action center where you can tackle some of the biggest challenges facing our planet and discover practical, meaningful ways that all of us can work together to fix them. Let’s get to work! https://earthhq.foe.org

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WHY TALENT WILL NEVER BE ENOUGH IN HOLLYWOOD

From the desk of: Nat Mundel, Founder/CEO of Voyage Media, Los Angeles, CA

MARKETABLE BOOK

Let’s assume for a moment that you’re a great writer, which you likely are… How far has your talent alone gotten you? There are thousands of talented writers creating excellent stories right now in Hollywood…So what is it that separates the great writer who gets projects made from the also-great writer who has a bunch of unsold scripts sitting on the shelf? A professional writer becomes so when he or she learns how to be part of the business of entertainment and drive his or her own projects forward  (not waiting around to be ‘discovered’). Talent is the minimum barrier to entry in entertainment… the real measure of your success is how effective you (the creator) are at building a marketable package for your project. Countless brilliant screenwriters and filmmakers never get their projects made because they don’t understand the importance of packaging their project in a way that speaks to the people who write the checks…

All successful writers and filmmakers in Hollywood know this, but most learned it the hard (and long) way. It doesn’t have to be that way. So to help you get your projects moving, I’m offering you a free copy of my report, “Building A Marketable Package: How To Get The Team You Need In Order To Market To The Audience You Want”. 

Click here for your FREE GIFT:

I hope this free report helps you to drive your project forward and attract the attention it needs in order to get made -- and maybe you and I can work on a project together in the future!

 Do great things!

 When you download the report above, I'm also going to give you free access to our popular video training course, "Making the Power Move from Amateur to Pro", featuring over 4 hours of training from high-powered executives from HBO, CAA, Alcon Entertainment, Wes Craven, the Weinsteins, Dimension Films and others, who are finally spilling their most honest insights on what it takes to get their attention, build a reputation and get your material noticed and bought again and again.

In the past, I've sold this course for $297, but today I am giving it to you for free!

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SOME THINGS TO THINK ABOUT

  Three Planets

“I CHOOSETo live by choice, not by chance. To make changes, not excuses. To be motivated, not manipulated. To be useful, not used. To excel, not compete. I choose self-esteem, not self-pity. I choose to listen to my inner voice, not the opinions of others. I choose to be myself, not someone else’s idea of me.” ~ Author Unknown

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FOOTSTEPS IN DESERT SAND

“Here are two options: Make progress or make excuses.” ~ Anonymous

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Vincent Van Gogh, "Wheat-field with Crows"

Vincent Van Gogh, "Wheat-field with Crows"

“The true artist reveals the unseen, and creates that which is new and uniquely his or her own,” ~ Ralph Ellison (excerpted & edited)

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Illustration by Maurice Sendak from “Open House for Butterflies” by Ruth Krauss. It does not generally take much strength to do something, but it often requires great strength to decide what to do.” ~ Elbert Hubbard

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~~~ RULES FOR THE BLUES ~~~

Howlin' Wolf

Howlin' Wolf

 
  • Most Blues begin, "Woke up this mornin’…"
  • "I got a good woman," is a bad way to begin the Blues, 'less you 
stick something nasty in the next line, like "I got a good woman with 
the meanest face in town."
  • The Blues is simple. After you get the first line right, repeat it. 
Then find something that rhymes ... sort of: "Got a good woman - with 
the meanest face in town. Got teeth like Margaret Thatcher - and she 
weigh 500 pound."
  • The Blues are not about choice. You stuck in a ditch: You stuck in 
a ditch, ain't no way out.
  • Blues cars: Chevys and Cadillacs and broken down trucks. Blues 
don't travel in Volvos, BMWs, or Sport Utility Vehicles. Most Blues 
transportation is a Greyhound bus or a southbound train. Jet aircraft and 
state-sponsored motor pools ain't even in the running. Walkin' plays a major 
part in the blues lifestyle. So does fixin' to die.
  • Teenagers can't sing the Blues. They ain't fixin’ to die yet. Adults sing the 
Blues. In Blues, adulthood means being old enough to get the electric chair 
if you shoot a man in Memphis.
  • Blues can take place in New York City, but not in Hawaii or any 
place in Canada. Hard times in St. Paul or Tucson is just depression. 
Chicago, St.Louis, and Kansas City still the best places to have the Blues. 
You cannot have the blues in any place that don't get rain.
  • A man with male pattern baldness ain't the blues. A woman with male 
pattern baldness is. Breaking your leg cuz you skiing is not the blues.
  • Breaking your leg cuz a' alligator be chomping on it is.
  • You can't have no Blues in an office or a shopping mall. The lighting is 
wrong. Go outside to the parking lot or sit by the dumpster.
  • Good places for the Blues: 
lonesome dirt road or highway, 
jailhouse, 
empty bed
  • 
Bad places: 
Ashrams, 
gallery openings, 
Ivy League institutions, 
golf courses
  • 
No one will believe it's the Blues if you wear a suit, 'less you 
happen to be a' old black man, and you slept in it.
  • 
Do you have the right to sing the Blues? Yes, if: you're older than dirt, 
you're blind, 
you shot a man in Memphis, 
you can't be satisfied.
  • No, if: 
you have all your teeth, 
you were once blind but now can see, 
the man in Memphis lived, 
you have a retirement plan or trust fund.
  • Blues is not a matter of color. It's a matter of bad luck. Tiger 
Woods cannot sing the blues. Gary Coleman could. Ugly white people 
also got a leg up on the blues.
  • If you ask for water and Baby give you gasoline, it's the Blues. 
Other acceptable Blues beverages are: bad wine, 
bad whiskey or bad bourbon, 
muddy water, 
black coffee. 
The following are NOT Blues beverages: 
mixed drinks, 
kosher wine, 
Snapple, 
sparkling water.
  • 
If it occurs in a cheap motel or a shotgun shack, it's a Blues death. 
Stabbed in the back by a jealous lover is another Blues way to die. So 
is the electric chair, substance abuse, and dying lonely on a broken down 
cot. You can't have a Blues death if you die during a tennis match, in a spa or hot-tub, or while getting 
liposuction.
  • 
Some Blues names for women: Sadie, 
Big Mama, 
Bessie, 
Fat River, Dumpling. 
Some Blues names for men: 
Joe 
Willie, 
Little Willie, 
Big Willie. 
Persons with names like Sierra, Sequoia, and Rainbow can't sing the 
Blues no matter how many men they shoot in Memphis.
  • 
Make yer own Blues name (starter kit): name of physical infirmity (Blind, Cripple, Lame, etc.) 
first name (see above) plus name of fruit (Lemon, Lime, Kiwi, etc.) 
last name of President (Jefferson, Johnson, Fillmore, etc.) 
For example, Blind Lime Jefferson, or Cripple Kiwi Fillmore, etc.
  • I don't care how tragic your life is: if you own a computer or cell-phone, you cannot sing 
the blues. You best destroy it - with fire, a spilled bottle of Mad Dog, or get 
out a shotgun. Maybe your big woman just done sat on it.
I don't care. From John Morrison’s Swing City website

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MIFF WAVY FILM IMAGE BANNER

Please forward this news-blog to your creative artist colleagues!

 QUESTIONS OR COMMENTS?

director@moondancefilmfestival.com

moondancefestival@gmail.com

WEBSITE: www.moondancefilmfestival.com

BLOG: www.moondancefilmfestival.com/blog

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No trees or natural habitats were harmed in the creation of this news-blog!

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2015 Moondance Selections Announced & Festival Info

“Freedom” by Zenos Frudakis

“Freedom” by Zenos Frudakis

Being fearless & bold, Moondance is a film festival where monotonous conformity is considered mediocrity, and extravagant individualism, innovation, uniqueness and experimentation is encouraged, awarded and applauded!

Moondance International Film Festival dates:

September 7th & 8th, 2015

Boulder, Colorado USA

Check out the links below for 2015 competition results & other info!

Moondance is known as the "American Cannes" of film festivals, and features the very best of indie films from the US and around the world, as well as our fabulously productive workshops, networking parties & special events. Come to be entertained, encouraged and inspired at this annual world-class event! Plan now to participate in this unique film festival event: September 7th & 8th, in beautiful Boulder, Colorado, USA, and help us celebrate the 16th annual Moondance International Film Festival! 

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FESTIVAL VOLUNTEERS WANTED!

You are cordially invited to volunteer to help out at the film festival!

All volunteers can earn free regular movie tickets for hours worked.

Contact Meghan at:

melaxton@hotmail.com

With “MIFF volunteer” in the subject line.

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Check these links for 2015 festival info:

FESTIVAL PROGRAM SCHEDULE FILM SCREENING SCHEDULE FESTIVAL TICKET SALES FILMS DESCRIPTIONS ANNOUNCEMENT OF SELECTED FILMS SPECIAL FILM SCREENING EVENTS COMPETITION RESULTS – FILM AND FILM SCORES COMPETITION RESULTS – WRITTEN WORKS FIRST IMPRESSIONS WORKSHOP NETWORKING & AWARDS EVENTS TRAVEL INFO BOULDER LODGING INFORMATION PHOTO ALBUM

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Moondance International Film Festival Presents

Very Special Film Events!

I AM VIDEO COVER

"I Am" + Q&A with director Tom Shadyac

Monday, September 7th, 7:PM @ eTown Hall

~and~

"The World is My Country" + Q&A*

Garry Davis

Garry Davis

Special Free Sneak Preview

with director Arthur Kanegis

*This film to be screened at the Hotel Boulderado

Tuesday, September 8th, 7:PM

$25 for the 2-film package

Special Event Double Feature: Two must-see revolutionary documentary films , presented by Moondance, Boulder's #1 international film festival, in conjunction with the 16th annual film festival films & events, : "I Am" directed by Tom  Shadyac, and, as a free bonus, "The World is My Country" by award-winning director Arthur Kanegis, including a Q&A with the director immediately after each film screening. And a free networking after-party at the Hotel Boulderado's new License #1 bar & lounge, 10:PM until midnight! This networking party is OYO (On Your Own, no tickets required). http://www.moondancefilmfestival.com

Sandboy

Monday, September 7th, 7:PM

Hotel Boulderado • Columbine Theater

Short narrative film, directed by Vittoria Colonna (IRELAND, c& executive-produced by Julian Lennon (USA). In a sleepy Californian desert, sits an abandoned junkyard, an abandoned RV and an abandoned young woman haunted by a secret. Award-winning film score by Hugh Rodgers. The director & the lead actor, Wallis Murphy-Munn , will be in attendance, with possibly Julian Lennon, son of John Lennon & Yoko Ono.(23 minutes)

"SANDBOY", directed by Vittoria Colonna

"SANDBOY", directed by Vittoria Colonna

INDIGO GREY: The Passage

Monday, September 7th, 7:PM

Hotel Boulderado • Columbine Theater

Shirt narrative music video, directed by: Sean Robinson (USA). A young boy's discovery of a mysterious gas mask provides a glimpse into an alternate reality. 

Featuring America's Got Talent's 'Hammerstep’ a traditional Irish/hip-hop dance troupe, and nine-year-old prodigy Aidan Lok, who has a first degree black belt in Shotokan Karate and has won over 100 medals from international karate tournaments, and original score by Evanescence's Amy Lee. (6 minutes)

INDIGO GREY: THE PASSAGE

INDIGO GREY: THE PASSAGE

Special Double-Feature Screenings!:

Tuesday, September 8th, 7:PM

Hotel Boulderado • Alpine Theater

Food for Thought, Food for Life

Short documentary film, directed by Multi-award-winning Susan Rockefeller (USA). We want our food fast, convenient and cheap, but at what cost? As farms become supersized our environment suffers and so does the quality of our food.

Our Common Roots

Feature documentary film, directed by Glenn Axford (Canada). This film speaks to the therapeutic and energetic qualities of medicinal plants of the forest, field and garden. Reconnecting with the intelligence of the plant kingdom, and our global healing traditions.

WHEAT SHEAF & GIRL

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MOONDANCE RECOMMENDS

Join the Elephant Stampede!

Join the Elephant Stampede!

World Elephant Day was Wednesday, August 12, and this year we had something BIG to celebrate! President Obama recently introduced a proposal to ban ivory sales in the United States. Once enacted, this ban will close loopholes that have allowed smugglers to disguise ivory from recently killed elephants and sell them as antiques in the U.S. It will send a clear message that America is serious about shutting down the ivory trade and saving elephants. But the president's proposal isn't law yet. The administration is collecting public comments for 60 days and you can bet that opponents of the ivory ban (yes, there are people who oppose this common sense regulation) will be vocal. We need voices in support of the ban to #BeHerd.

Earlier this year, the Wildlife Conservation Society worked with the International Fund for Animal Welfare (IFAW) to investigate the ivory trade on Craigslist. But there's more work to be done. Talk about a big statement! Recently, elephants and other endangered species lit up New York City, appearing on the side of the Empire State Building!

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SOME THINGS TO THINK ABOUT

OWLS ON BRANCH

To acquire knowledge, one must study; but to acquire wisdom, one must observe. ~ Marilyn vos Savant

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Photo by Stephanie V.

Photo by Stephanie V.

“The key to success is trusting yourself.” ~ Scott Adams, Dilbert cartoonist

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Buster Keaton

Buster Keaton

 “It isn’t the mountain ahead that wears you out; it’s the grain of sand in your shoe.” ~ Author Unknown

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"Flatirons-Moonset", view from Boulder, Colorado / Photo by Charles Pfeil www.ArrowPhotos.com

"Flatirons-Moonset", view from Boulder, Colorado / Photo by Charles Pfeil www.ArrowPhotos.com

“I've learned that everyone wants to live on top of the mountain, but all the knowledge, experiences, growth and happiness occurs while you're climbing it.” ~ Andy Rooney

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"Hollow Man" by Bruno  Catalano

"Hollow Man" by Bruno  Catalano

“It’s not how much money we make that ultimately makes us happy…it’s whether or not our work is fulfilling.” ~ Malcolm Gladwell

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MIFF WAVY FILM IMAGE BANNER

Please forward this news-blog to your creative artist colleagues!

QUESTIONS OR COMMENTS?

director@moondancefilmfestival.com

moondancefestival@gmail.com

WEBSITE: www.moondancefilmfestival.com

BLOG: www.moondancefilmfestival.com/blog

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No trees or natural habitats were harmed in the creation of this news-blog!

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THE MOONDANCE MISSION FOR PEACE & FESTIVAL INFO

Moondance International Film Festival dates:

September 7th & 8th,, 2015

Boulder, Colorado USA

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Moondance International Film Festival Presents

I AM VIDEO COVER

A Very Special Film Event!

"I Am" + Q&A with director Tom Shadyac

Monday, September 7th, 7:PM @ eTown Hall

~and~

"The World is My Country" + Q&A*

with director Arthur Kanegis

*This film to be screened at the Hotel Boulderado

A Special Sneak Preview

Tuesday, September 8th, 7:PM

Special Event Double Feature: Two must-see revolutionary documentary films , presented by Moondance, Boulder's #1 international film festival, in conjunction with the 16th annual film festival films & events, : "I Am" directed by Tom  Shadyac (Ace Ventura, Pet Detective, Patch Adams, Bruce Almighty, Liar Liar) & "The World is My Country" by award-winning director Arthur Kanegis, including a Q&A with the director immediately after each film screening. And a free networking after-party at the Hotel Boulderado's new License #1 bar & cocktail lounge, 10:PM until midnight! 

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FESTIVAL VOLUNTEERS WANTED! 

You are cordially invited to volunteer to help out at the film festival!

All volunteers can earn free regular movie tickets for hours worked.

Contact our volunteer coordinator, Meghan Laxton, at:

melaxton@hotmail.com

With “MIFF Volunteer” in the subject line.

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ALL OF THESE INFO LINKS ARE COMING SOON: IN THE VERY NEXT NEWS-BLOG

ANNOUNCEMENT OF 2015 WINNERS, FINALISTS & SEMI-FINALISTS

ANNOUNCEMENT OF 2015 SELECTED FILMS 

2015 FILM PROGRAM SCHEDULE

2015 FILMS DESCRIPTIONS

2015 FESTIVAL PROGRAM INFO

2015 FESTIVAL TICKET SALES

dove copy “When the power of love overcomes the love of power, the world will then know peace.” ~ Jimi Hendrix

MOONDANCE MISSION STATEMENT

Our mission is to present a vibrant and growing collection of films, writings & music, which is an ideal means for communication across perceived boundaries of race, culture, age and gender. Moondance promotes, encourages, educates and rewards non-violent conflict resolution in the arts and film. Our much-coveted Columbine Awards are given to the filmmakers and/or writers who best depict alternatives to violence as a method of dealing with conflicts, whether personal, local, national or international, and/or show why violence as a solution to conflict is ultimately counter-productive and inhumane. READ MORE

MOONDANCE STATEMENT ON NON-VIOLENCE

Our objective is to identify and address the root causes of violence and contribute to the just and peaceful transformation of violent conflict resolution, through the art of film, writings & music. The core of conflict transformation work is the building of a sustainable peace between all people. This involves a process of profound change in attitude, transforming situations characterized by fear and killing into environments in which reconciliation, respect for other people, social justice and participatory democracy can take root. READ MORE

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A MOONDANCER WRITES US

 Thank you, Elizabeth, for your wonderfully helpful advice (on improving my screenplay). I agree that the reading experience, compared to the first iteration, is like chalk and cheese - so thank you! I can’t thank you enough for your care, attention and advice.  It’s a privilege to be a part of your wonderful contest!” ~ Tony Heaver-Wren, screenwriter, Cayman Islands

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Moondance International Film Festival dates:

September 7th & 8th,, 2015

Boulder, Colorado USA

2015 BOULDER LODGING INFORMATION

2015 MOONDANCE TRAVEL INFO 

BOULDER AREA INFO

Check out the website for more info:

MIFF_Banner468X60

WEBSITE: www.moondancefilmfestival.com

NEWS-BLOG: www.moondancefilmfestival.com/blog

EMAIL: director@moondancefilmfestival.com

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SOME THINGS TO THINK ABOUT

Gandhi's glasses

Gandhi's glasses

An eye for an eye only ends up making the whole world blind. ~ Mahatma Gandhi

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GROUCHO FACE

“The most efficient way of attacking evil is to expose it to ridicule. It can bear rebukes, but not laughter. It doesn’t mind appearing wicked, but it hates to look ridiculous.” ~ Moliere (translated & edited for clarity)

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Photo: cbsnews.com

Photo: cbsnews.com

Peace cannot be kept by force; it can only be achieved by understanding. ~ Albert Einstein

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Guatemalan girl & tourist

Guatemalan girl & tourist

Peace is not the absence of conflict; it is the ability to handle conflict by peaceful means. ~ Roland Reagan

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magic hat and wand with clipping path

“Tricks of magic follow the archetypes of narrative fiction writing – there are tales of creation and loss, death and resurrection, and obstacles that must be overcome.” ~ Marco Tempest

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occasionalplanet.org

occasionalplanet.org

“Hard work spotlights the character of people: some turn up their sleeves, some turn up their noses, and some don’t turn up at all.” ~ Sam Ewing

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ANT LIFTING STICK

“People who say it can’t be done should not interrupt those who are doing it.” ~ Stephen Klasko & Richard W. Hevner, Thomas Jefferson University

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MOONDANCE RECOMMENDS:

STORY JARS LOGO

Story Jars encourage imagination and provide great fun for adults and children. A perfect gift for parents, grandparents and children! So many children these days spend too much time alone, surfing the web & on social media. The Story Jar comes with interesting and fun objects, including shells, toy animals and an assortment of curiosities that can be the basis of real or imaginary stories. In short, you have an "open book" of ideas that you can invent together. We provide the "starter kit", which includes the Story Jar itself, plus about a third of a jar worth of interesting items. But the real excitement comes for both of you when you add some of the trinkets and little memorabilia from your own life.

It’s perfect for personal and family stories you may want to pass down from generation to generation. Start by picking one item from the jar and say, “Once Upon a Time…" which sets the mood for the story. There is nothing like a Story Jar to bring the stories to life! It’s perfect for personal and family stories that you may want to pass down from generation to generation. The kids love it, the parents love it and it’s something the young ones will remember and look forward to. And someday, they can pass it along to their kids and grand-kids. A genuine family legacy.

There is nothing like a Story Jar to bring those great stories to life! This is also great for teachers, libraries and the therapeutic community, all of whom see Story Jars as a valuable additional tool for learning & self-expression. READ MORE

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THE POWER OF HEALING FOODS

APPLE

“An apple a day keeps the doctor away!”

Treating disease with healing foods is certainly not a new idea; it has been done for many thousands of years. Now science and medicine have made amazing discoveries regarding the healing power of these natural foods and plants. Healthful, readily available and inexpensive natural, organic healing foods can strengthen your body's defenses against disease, treat disease directly, and even slow down the aging process. All without expensive and potentially toxic prescription medicines & over-the-counter medications. 

The underlying cause of many common diseases is often the type of foods we eat on a regular basis, or foods we neglect to eat. Studies show that people who eat a lot of refined carbohydrates, animal fats, and a lot of animal protein are at much greater risk of developing diseases and a shorter, less healthy lifespan. Read more at: http://www.foods-healing-power.com/

NATURE'S MEDICINE

Lavender, for peacefulness, serenity & sleep

Lavender, for peacefulness, serenity & sleep

There are times when it’s much smarter to use an herbal remedy than a pharmaceutical. For example, an herbal remedy usually offers a safer alternative. Archaeological evidence indicates that the use of medicinal plants, essential oils, herbal extracts, spices, tinctures and herbal teas for healing dates to at least the Paleolithic, approximately 60,000 years ago. Written evidence of herbal remedies, such as ayurvedic remedies, can date back to over 5,000 years.

Native Americans have medicinally used about 2,500 plant species that are native to North America. Many herbs have beneficial effects on long-term health, and can be used to effectively treat human diseases. Few traditional remedies, however, have translated into modern drugs, although there is continuing research into the efficacy and possible adaptation of traditional herbal treatments.

 Here are just a few of these common herbal remedies one can utilize, instead of prescription drugs: aloe vera, basil, chamomile, ginger, ginseng, kelp, lavender, marijuana, quinine, rosemary, tumeric & valerian. If you are taking prescription drugs, be sure to check online or with your doctor if there might be any adverse reactions when combining the two.

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BRAVE BOULDER OWL VIDEO GOES VIRAL!

“Only in Boulder!”

Photo courtesy of Boulder County Sheriff's Office

Photo courtesy of Boulder County Sheriff's Office

A young northern saw-whet owl stands on Rainbow Lakes Road near Nederland on July 21 as Boulder County sheriff's Deputy Sophie Berman takes a photo. The photos of the small, fuzzy owl photo & video taken by the sheriff's office have gone viral. Watch the YouTube video here. A fluffy little owl photographed and videotaped last week staring down a Boulder County sheriff's deputy outside Nederland has become a worldwide Internet star, with the pint-sized bird appearing all over social media and on the websites of Time, Mashable, the U.K.'s Daily Mail and many more. Read the Daily Camera article, by Mitchell Byars, Staff Writer

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Please forward this news-blog to your creative artist colleagues!

 QUESTIONS OR COMMENTS?

director@moondancefilmfestival.com

moondancefestival@gmail.com

WEBSITE: www.moondancefilmfestival.com

BLOG: www.moondancefilmfestival.com/blog

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No trees or natural habitats were harmed in the creation of this news-blog!

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Moondance Insider tips: When and How to Follow Up & Women Writers in Residence info

African Animals sculpture: r-atencio.blogspot.com.jpg

Ephemeral African Animals sand sculpture, artist unknown

Being fearless, Moondance is where monotonous conformity is considered mediocrity, and extravagant individualism, innovation, uniqueness and experimentation is encouraged, awarded and applauded!

Thanks again, for all the very fine submissions received. Sending your work out into the world is a true act of bravery, and we certainly appreciate your leap of faith. Announcements of winners, finalists & semi-finalists, as well as the film-screening program of selected films, will be made in August.

Subscribe now to the Moondance news-blog to receive announcements, and the 2015 competition results, as soon as all the submissions have been previewed, and selection decisions have been made. Our very popular news-blog also has festival event info, entertainment industry news, insider tips & articles, recommendations, things to consider & more!

Moondance International Film Festival dates:

Monday & Tuesday, September 7th & 8th,, 2015

(with an Early-bird networking party on Sunday afternoon 4-6:PM)

Beautiful Boulder, Colorado USA

EARLY-BIRD 2015 FILM FESTIVAL INFO:

2015 BOULDER LODGING INFORMATION

2015 MOONDANCE TRAVEL INFO

BOULDER AREA INFO

Check out the website for more info:

MIFF BANNER

EARLY-BIRD 2015 FILM FESTIVAL INFO:

2015 BOULDER LODGING INFORMATION

2015 MOONDANCE TRAVEL INFO

BOULDER AREA INFO

starfish chain

WEBSITE: www.moondancefilmfestival.com

NEWS-BLOG: www.moondancefilmfestival.com/blog

EMAIL: director@moondancefilmfestival.com

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A MOONDANCER WRITES US

“The Moondance Festival I helped with was one of the most enjoyable experiences in my life. I am an actor and I had so much fun as an emcee, guiding, helping at a table, and attending a dinner. I was also a part of the CASA group that performed for a small audience in one of the theatres that year. Thank you for all that you are doing to promote such talented and creative people. My husband Lynn and I would love to volunteer again for the 2015 festival. ~ Lee Nicholson

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INSIDER TIPS!

INKTIP LOGO STORY POWER

StoryPower - When and How to Follow Up!

InkTip Advice: The Follow-up

You're getting your work out there, and people are asking to read your material. You’ve sent it in to them. Congratulations, you're on the path to success. So, what do you do now, sit back and wait for the offers to roll in? Read this article to learn more!

Moondance note on how NOT to follow up: It’s best not to call, text or email someone who has asked to see your work, or when you’ve submitted it to a competition, to put him or her on the spot by asking the 3 dreaded questions, “Did you get my (script, films, music, etc.)?” and “Did you (read it, watch it, listen to it?” or worst of all, “Did you like it?”. Don’t even think about it!

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ATTENTION, WOMEN WRITERS!

MOONDANCE RECOMMENDS:

HEDGEBROOK LOGO

Hedgebrook cottage

Hedgebrook is a global community of women writers and people who seek extraordinary books, poetry, plays, films and music by women. A literary nonprofit, our mission is to support visionary women writers whose stories and ideas shape our culture now and for generations to come. We offer writing residencies, master classes and salons at our retreat on Whidbey Island, and public programs that connect writers with readers and audiences around the world. Hedgebrook offers a variety of ways for women writers to create and connect: www.hedgebrook.org

Six writers are in residence at a time, each housed in a handcrafted cottage. They spend their days in solitude – writing, reading, taking walks in the woods on the property or on nearby Double Bluff beach. In the evenings, they gather in the farmhouse kitchen to share a home-cooked gourmet meal, their work, their process and their stories. Applications are due by July 28th! www.hedgebrook.org/writers-in-residence/

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SOME THINGS TO THINK ABOUT:

Photo by: miriadna.com

Photo by: miriadna.com

“Cease to ask what the morrow will bring forth. Set down as a gain each day that fortune grants to you.” ~ Eudora Welty

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photo by ‪www.volusia.org

photo by ‪www.volusia.org

“If you would be wise, you must adapt yourself to circumstances, as water always shapes itself to the container that holds it.” ~ Ancient Chinese Proverb ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~  

‪Photo by misskarenmarquez.edublogs.org

‪Photo by misskarenmarquez.edublogs.org

“Life is the perpetual present moment one lives in, and a perception that time is nothing more than the current…an eternal flowing back to the sea.” ~William Least Heat-Moon, author, “River Horse”

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JAPANESE SAND GARDEN

When we are out of alignment with ourselves, it is mirrored immediately - when we are in harmony with ourselves, the world reflects that, too. Accept the lessons offered, and return to serenity." ~ Lynne Forrest

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DANCING BY THE OCEAN

“I am not what happened to me; I am what I choose to become.” ~ Carl Jung

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Please forward this news-blog to your creative artist colleagues!

 QUESTIONS OR COMMENTS?

director@moondancefilmfestival.com

moondancefestival@gmail.com

WEBSITE: www.moondancefilmfestival.com

BLOG: www.moondancefilmfestival.com/blog

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No trees or natural habitats were harmed for this news-blog!

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Moondance Insider Tips on Filming with Drones + the Power of Words

Brigantines

“Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.” – Mark Twain

PLAN TO ATTEND THE 2015

MOONDANCE INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL!

Film Festival dates:

September 7th & 8th, 2015

Boulder, Colorado USA BOULDERADO HOTEL2015 Moondance historic landmark venue:

Hotel Boulderado

2115 Thirteenth Street

Boulder, CO 80302 USA

303-442-4344

reservations@boulderado.com

EARLY-BIRD 2015 FILM FESTIVAL INFO:

2015 BOULDER LODGING INFO

2015 MOONDANCE TRAVEL INFO

BOULDER AREA INFO

Check out the website for more info:

MIFF BANNER

WEBSITE: www.moondancefilmfestival.com

NEWS-BLOG: www.moondancefilmfestival.com/blog

EMAIL: director@moondancefilmfestival.com

Subscribe now to the Moondance news-blog to receive announcements, and the 2015 competition results, as soon as all the submissions have been previewed, and selection decisions have been made. Our very popular news-blog also has festival event info, entertainment industry news, insider tips, articles, recommendations, things to consider & more!

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THE POWER OF WORDS

BOULDER tulips

WATCH THIS SHORT, INSPIRING VIDEO!

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INSIDER TIPS:

SHOOTING FILMS WITH A DRONE!

BY Sebastian Solberg

DRONE CAMERA

Drones are revolutionizing filmmaking, allowing filmmakers to achieve jaw-dropping, cinematic results that have previously only been available to hugely expensive Hollywood productions! Drone technology won’t turn you into a great filmmaker but it will enhance your skills as a story-teller, and, if used well, will make your work shine. If you’re wanting to get high-production value shots for your next film project and you’re looking at using a drone, here are top ten tips on how to get that money-shot safely & to watch a cool drone tutorial! Also available: something just as impressive – a camera-equipped quadcopter drone that can land on the water and shoot underwater footage, too!

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MOONDANCE RECOMMENDS

KANGAROO BABY

From www.change.org: Did you know that Gap Inc. profits from animals' inhumane suffering in the fur industry? Raccoon dogs, foxes, rabbits, mink, and even kangaroos are slaughtered and skinned for Gap Inc.'s Intermix stores despite this widespread cruelty to animals who are often beaten, electrocuted, or bled to death for their fur. A spokesperson for Gap Inc. said: "We are committed to the ethical sourcing of our products, which includes the humane treatment of animals," but they have stopped short of putting this policy in place across all stores. Many Gap, Inc. fur products are made in China, a country with virtually nonexistent animal cruelty laws. If they claim to care about humane treatment of animals, why are they allowing their Intermix stores all over the world to continue selling fur coats, hats, gloves, and other accessories from animals killed? Please take a stand right now against the heartless slaughter of animals! Please sign this petition asking Gap Inc. to go completely fur-free!

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Please enjoy watching this lovely 5-minute video:

“THE BIRDS OF PARADISE”

Borneo-Danum-Valley

 https://www.youtube.com/embed/REP4S0uqEOc

by Tim Lama & Ed Scholes

BOREO EXOTIC BIRD

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Watch "Cheerleader" Pom-pom Crabs waving stinging sea anemones in their claws to protect themselves against predators! 

pom-pom-CRAB

Wish you had these when dealing with Hollywood producers?

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SOME THINGS TO THINK ABOUT:

BUDDHA & LOTUS

Happiness is when what you think, what you say, and what you do are in complete harmony” ~ Mahatma Gandhi

J2BEACH-MAIN

“Memory is like a child wandering along the seashore. You can never tell what special small pebble or luminous seashell it will pick up and keep among its most precious treasures.” ~ P. Harris (edited)

OAK TREE GREEN LEAVES

“When we long for a life without difficulties, remember that oak trees grow old and strong in contrary winds, and diamonds are made under long years of great pressure.” ~ Peter Marshall

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Please forward this news-blog to your creative artist colleagues!

 QUESTIONS OR COMMENTS?

director@moondancefilmfestival.com

moondancefestival@gmail.com

WEBSITE: www.moondancefilmfestival.com

BLOG: www.moondancefilmfestival.com/blog

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No trees or natural habitats were harmed in the creation of this news-blog!

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Make a Splash at the 2015 Moondance!

~~~ Happy Summer Solstice to all Moondancers! ~~~

Photo by Clark Little

Photo by Clark Little

You can make a big splash at Moondance 2015. Submit your entry now!

CALL-FOR-ENTRIES EXTENDED FINAL DEADLINE FOR SUBMISSIONS:

JUNE 30TH

Thanks a million to all those talented filmmakers, writers & composers who have already submitted their entries for 2015!

Please note: Films may be submitted to Moondance by the director, producers, cinematographer, DP, film score composer, writer, editor or a lead actor(, with permission from the producer/director, as needed!

MIFF TEXT BANNER

See our submission categories HERE!

Feature, short, documentary, & animation films, music videos, screenplays, stageplays, radio plays, short stories, treatments, kids scripts & films, TV pilots, and more!

 Read our submission guidelines HERE!

 Official Entry Form HERE!

 Moondance now also accepts scripts for judging in these languages:

FRENCH, SPANISH, GERMAN, DUTCH & AFRICAANS.

 

Moondance International Film Festival dates:

September 7th & 8th,, 2015

Boulder, Colorado USA

Check out the website for more info:

MIFF BANNER

WEBSITE: www.moondancefilmfestival.com

SUBSCRIBE TO THE NEWS-BLOG: www.moondancefilmfestival.com/blog

EMAIL: director@moondancefilmfestival.com

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MOOONDANCE RECOMMENDS:

InkTip logo_2015

INKTIP.COM NEWS

 24 production companies joined InkTip in the past month alone, to look for new scripts to produce!

List your scripts now to take full advantage of producers looking to option scripts and discover new writers. As you may know, we launched a new pricing structure to make it easier for writers to list multiple scripts. The more scripts you list on InkTip, the more visible you become to our growing network of producers and reps. Log in here to list your scripts now and make them visible to the 24 production companies that just joined InkTip – as well as the dozens of producers who already hired multiple writers and optioned over 70 scripts so far this year – not to mention the many more producers who will option scripts very soon. New producers sign up and use InkTip every week, to find the scripts and writers they are looking for!

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“FRAGMENTED: THE HIDDEN HEROES OF BORNEO”

BORNEO

ABOUT THE FILM:

“Fragmented: the Hidden Heroes of Borneo”, from UK directors Stephanie Sammann and Ellie Mackay, explores the unusual conservation efforts by researchers in Northern Malaysian Borneo, where palm oil deforestation threatens one of the most treasured & wild parts of the planet. The forested depths of Borneo are home to some of the world’s most unique animals & plants, and at the current rate of deforestation, they are on the brink of being lost forever.

Within the ecological disaster unfolding around them, our unlikely protagonists work to protect some of the world’s most peculiar creatures against the impending destruction. From incredibly rare frogs, to impossibly strange insects, the scientists’ dedication to their subjects can be both baffling and moving. Their conservation methods are far from conventional, and the complicated relationship between the SAFE Project and the local palm oil corporations shows that the conservation story that we have all heard may not be all that it seems. More than just a nature documentary, Fragmented tells the story of the very human aspect behind one of the wildest places on earth. www.fragmentedfilm.com

ORANG & BABY-BONEO

The story of conservation in Borneo is an essential one to tell.

How YOU can help:

http://www.crowdfunder.co.uk/FragmentedFilm2015

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MOONDANCERS WRITE US:

“Labor Day weekend would certainly be a marvelous night for a moon dance in Boulder Colorado!” ~ Brian Connors, director, “Good Men”, short film, starring Ed Asner & Mark Rydell

Karen Pearlman and I so appreciated your support of the first work of our Physical TV Company A Dancer Drops Out Of The Sky in the early days of Moondance. Many thanks and congratulations on what you have achieved over all these years with this festival.” ~ Richard James Allen

So Moondance goes on its wonderful way. What a fine gateway you've created. I have decided you are an archetype…not sure which…but one of the good guys. Truly great work. Marguerite and I just smile when we think of you!” ~ Gino Matteo, playwright, 2014 winner, “Nellie” libretto

 I would love to offer my help for the Moondance Festival. Please let me know when you are ready to sign up volunteers. I will forever remember how wonderful an experience I had helping in the past.” ~ Lee Nicholson

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STAGE 32 MEET-UP AT THE MOONDANCE INT'L FILM FESTIVAL!

WHERE:

Hotel Boulderado

2115 13th street

Boulder, Colorado

WHEN:

Monday, September 7th

4:00 – 6:00 PM

Please RSVP at the above invitation link, or just show up & join us!

JOIN STAGE 32 HERE!

Everyone within the International Film, TV and Theater industry can benefit from being a Stage32 member & networking with other members. The Stage 32 community is strictly for people working in or with a desire to work in film, television or theater. It’s a place to gather, to discuss and develop projects, to join actor with director, director with producer, producer with cast and crew, maybe even find financial support for filmmaking, promote your project, and connect screenwriters with agents, producers and directors. Here, you can grow your contact list and build a pertinent network in a rapid fashion. The more you participate, the greater the results. As the saying goes, it’s not only what you know, it’s also who you know. So, don’t wait for things to happen, make them happen. With over 400,000 members from every country on the planet, Stage 32 is the vital social network and educational hub for the film, television and theater community, and is uniquely populated with the most creative people on Earth. Join Stage 32 today and start building your world-wide entertainment industry network.

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SOME THINGS TO THINK ABOUT:

SHOULD OR MUST?

Excerpts from

“The Crossroads of Should and Must: Find and Follow Your Passion”

By Elle Luna

Van Gogh, Chambre - Arles"

Van Gogh, Chambre - Arles"

"Does what goes on inside show on the outside?," young Vincent van Gogh despaired in a moving letter to his brother while floundering to find his purpose. "Someone has a great fire in his soul and nobody ever comes to warm themselves at it, and passers-by see only a wisp of smoke from the chimney." A century later, Joseph Campbell stoked that hearth of the soul with his foundational treatise on finding your bliss. And yet every day, countless hearths and hearts grow ashen in cubicles around the world as we succumb to the all-too-human tendency toward choosing what we should be doing in order to make a living over what we must do in order to feel alive.

Sometimes, Shoulds are small, seemingly innocuous, and easily accommodated. “You should listen to that song,” for example. At other times, Shoulds are highly influential systems of thought that pressure and, at their most destructive, coerce us to live our lives differently.

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Must is when we stop conforming to other people’s ideals and start connecting to our own – and this allows us to cultivate our full potential as individuals. To choose Must is to say yes to hard work and constant effort, to say yes to a journey without a road map or guarantees, and in so doing, to say yes to what Joseph Campbell called “the experience of being alive, so that our life experiences on the purely physical plane will have resonance within our innermost being and reality, so that we actually feel the rapture of being alive.” Choosing Must is the greatest thing we can do with our lives. (excerpted from www.BrainPickings.org)

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LAST CHANCE! SUBMIT YOUR ENTRY TODAY!

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 QUESTIONS OR COMMENTS?

director@moondancefilmfestival.com

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WEBSITE: www.moondancefilmfestival.com

BLOG: www.moondancefilmfestival.com/blog

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  When we choose Should, we’re choosing to live our life for someone or something other than ourselves. The journey to Should can be smooth, the rewards can seem clear, and the options are often plentiful.

Your Next-to-Last Chance for the Moondance in 2015

CALL-FOR-ENTRIES EXTENDED FINAL DEADLINE FOR SUBMISSIONS: JUNE 30TH

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For your best chance, send in your entry RIGHT NOW!

 FILMS, SCRIPTS & FILM SCORES may be submitted to Moondance by the director, producers,cinematographer, DP, film score composer, writer, editor or lead actor(s), with permission from the producer/director, as needed!

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Our submission categories:

Feature, short, documentary, & animation films, music videos, screenplays, stageplays, radio plays, short stories, treatments, kids scripts & films, TV pilots, and more!

Entry form & info: www.moondancefilmfestival.com

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Moondance was recently listed by MovieMaker magazine as one of the top 50 film festival competitions worth the entry fee!

Moondance now also accepts scripts for judging in these languages: FRENCH, SPANISH, GERMAN, DUTCH & AFRICAANS.

 Our foreign-language readers are published writers & an award-winning screenwriter!

starfishThe Moondance International Film Festival, featuring its distinct cinematic visions and bold film selections, has distinguished itself around the world as much more than an annual film festival! The Moondance is a unique community, a supportive, productive, and creative year-round collaboration between independent filmmakers and movie audiences, between writers, composers and the world of top-quality filmed entertainment.

Withoutabox for Moondance International Film Festival is now fully active for this season’s call for entries: www.withoutabox.com/login/1240

Moondance International Film Festival dates:

September 7th & 8th,, 2015

Boulder, Colorado USA

Check out the website for more info:

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WEBSITE: www.moondancefilmfestival.com

NEWS-BLOG: www.moondancefilmfestival.com/blog

EMAIL: director@moondancefilmfestival.com

The Moondance International Film Festival is always independent, uncensored, totally unfettered, often irreverent, sometimes controversial, always entertaining, and definitely not beholden to any special interests! We select films, written works and music with these criteria: a unique story, well-told.

Moondancers are part of an amazing worldwide entertainment community; a unique collaboration of multi-talented writers, filmmakers, and film score composers. The Moondance mission is to entertain, inform, inspire, encourage and educate. We honor those artists who, through their creative work, actively increase awareness, provide multiple viewpoints, address complex social issues, and strengthen ties between international audiences. At Moondance, you can come together with other writers, directors and producers to create new opportunities, develop tools for success and forge new alliances within the international film and entertainment industry.

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In our continuing efforts to promote top-quality original filmmaking, writing and music composition by talented artists from around the world, the Moondance International Film Festival is very pleased to announce that our festival competitions have brought in great submissions, in all categories, from: Argentina, Australia, Austria, Bangladesh, Belgium, Bosnia & Herzegovina, Brazil, Bulgaria, Canada, Grand Cayman, China, Colombia, Costa Rica, Croatia, Curaçao, Cyprus, Denmark, Egypt, Estonia, Finland, France, Georgia, Germany, Greece, Iceland, India, Iran, Iraq, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Korea, Lithuania, Luxemburg, Malta, Marshall Islands, Mexico, Montenegro, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Peru, Romania, Russia, Serbia, Singapore, Slovenia, South Africa, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Tasmania, Turkey, Ukraine, United Arab Republic, the UK & US, Venezuela, and more!

FLAGS FOREIGN

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WHY THE "TOMORROWLAND" LEAD CHANGED FROM MALE TO FEMALE:

Britt Robertson, “Tomorrowland”, Disney

Britt Robertson, “Tomorrowland”, Disney

"Tomorrowland" character Casey was originally written for a male actor, but a switch to a female lead was better for the script, according to co-writer Damon Lindelof. "There is a completely false perception of, 'Well, our main character is interested in space travel, so it's gotta be a boy,' but the first time I said, 'Well, what if it was a young girl'... It just felt like it was exactly right for us," Lindelof said. "It'll be nice in 10 or 15 years for this not to be a thing anymore," he added. Geena Davis Institute on Gender in Media, working to create positive images of girls and women in media & entertainment: www.seejane.org

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A MOONDANCER WRITES US:

 “I love that you have a music portion as part of your festival. The composers and others who create original music for film get too little attention at festivals. I'm really proud of both the score and the original music in my film.” ~ Mikki Del Monico, award-winning filmmaker, screenwriter, Venice Beach, CA, www.mikidel.com

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SOME THINGS TO CONSIDER:

“The world is a book, and those who do not travel have read only one page.” ~St. Augustine

“The world is a book, and those who do not travel have read only one page.” ~St. Augustine

 
Photo: Dominique Browning “When we say, ‘This is the best I can do for now...’, there is nobility in the effort, courage in the the doggedness. It is a process of trying and perhaps failing. Of beginning again. And so it is with the search for meaning – like writing, its rewards spring not from the finished product but from the integrity of the process, from the act of holding up one's own end…” ~ Dani Shapiro

Photo: Dominique Browning
“When we say, ‘This is the best I can do for now...’, there is nobility in the effort, courage in the the doggedness. It is a process of trying and perhaps failing. Of beginning again. And so it is with the search for meaning – like writing, its rewards spring not from the finished product but from the integrity of the process, from the act of holding up one's own end…” ~ Dani Shapiro

 
The Moondance winners’ star award The Moondance Star Award “I am not what happened to me; I am what I choose to become!” ~ Carl Jung

The Moondance winners’ star award
The Moondance Star Award
“I am not what happened to me; I am what I choose to become!” ~ Carl Jung

 
Hopi Second Mesa, www.imgsoup.com “Silence can be fertilizing, it can bathe the imagination, it can, as in great open spaces – be the nimbus of a way of life, a condition of vision.” ~ Adrienne Rich

Hopi Second Mesa, www.imgsoup.com
“Silence can be fertilizing, it can bathe the imagination, it can, as in great open spaces – be the nimbus of a way of life, a condition of vision.” ~ Adrienne Rich

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SUBMIT YOUR ENTRY TODAY! DON’T BE A SNAIL!

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Please forward this news-blog to your creative artist colleagues!

 QUESTIONS OR COMMENTS?

director@moondancefilmfestival.com

moondancefestival@gmail.com

WEBSITE: www.moondancefilmfestival.com

BLOG: www.moondancefilmfestival.com/blog

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Moondance Extended Call-For-Entries Deadline!

www.marilynparkerfineart.com

www.marilynparkerfineart.com

Moondance Extended June Call-For-Entries Deadline!

For your best chance to win, send in your entry RIGHT NOW!

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Due to popular demand, we have extended the entry deadline:

EXTENDED FINAL SUBMISSION DEADLINE: JUNE 30

AND…we rolled back the late entry fee to be the same as the regular fee: just $75!

 See our submission categories HERE!

Feature, short, documentary, & animation films, music videos, screenplays, stageplays, radio plays, short stories, treatments, kids scripts & films, TV pilots, and more!

Read our submission guidelines HERE!

Official Entry Form HERE!

Moondance now also accepts scripts for judging in these languages:

FRENCH, SPANISH, GERMAN, DUTCH & AFRICAANS

Our foreign-language readers are screenwriters & published writers!

Films may be submitted to Moondance by the director, producers, cinematographer, DP, film score composer, writer, editor or lead actor(s), with permission from the producer/director, as needed!

"Mer-folk" Sculpture by Charlotte Zink, of www.zinkmetalart.com

"Mer-folk" Sculpture by Charlotte Zink, of www.zinkmetalart.com

“Qui ne tente rien, n’a rien.” (One who doesn’t try will have nothing)  ~ French proverb Withoutabox for Moondance International Film Festival is now fully active for this season’s call for entries: www.withoutabox.com/login/1240

Moondance International Film Festival dates:

September 7th & 8th,, 2015

Boulder, Colorado USA

Boulder's Rocky Mountains Flatirons

Rocky Mountains & Flatirons at Boulder's Chautauqua Park

Check out the website for more info:

WEBSITE: www.moondancefilmfestival.com

NEWS-BLOG: www.moondancefilmfestival.com/blog

EMAIL: director@moondancefilmfestival.com

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MOONDANCERS WRITE US:

“Moondance is such a distinguished and well-known screenwriting competition!” ~ Todd Bronson, Screenwriter, Henderson, Nevada

“The Moondance Film Festival has a tremendous reputation for impeccable film programming!” ~ Sean J.S. Jourdan, Writer, Producer, Director, Denver, Colorado

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INSIDER TIPS ON WINNING SCREENPLAYS AT MOONDANCE: Here's what we look for in judging screenplays for the Moondance:

Screenplays-pile

  1. Unique story, well-told (most important element).
  2. Proper script formatting
  3. Edited for correct grammar, spelling & punctuation
  4. Good, interesting dialog
  5. Plenty of action & reactions
  6. Visually interesting settings/locations
  7. Story-arc & storyline
  8. Relatable characters
  9. Conflict & resolution
  10. No gratuitous sex & gory violence (there just for the thrill)
  11. Back-story & sub-text 
  12. Women treated fairly (not all bitches or bimbos)
  13. Is the story told cinematically, visually?

The logline, mini-synopsis & first page must be very interesting & make the reader want to continue. The first 5 or 10 pages of the screenplay are critical, as are the last 5 or 10 pages.

This is also relatable for stageplays, short stories, TV pilots, radio plays, and films.

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MOONDANCE RECOMMENDS:

PLEASE HELP SAVE THE BEES!

photo: www.pbs.org

photo: www.pbs.org

Here’s just a brief list of some of the millions of plants we would lose if our bees continue to perish, in this international crisis: Alfalfa, Almonds, Apples, Apricots, Avocados, Bamboo, Beans, Beets, Black-Eyed Peas, Blackberries, Bok Choy (Chinese Cabbage), Brazil Nuts, Broccoli, Brussels Sprouts, Cabbage, Cacti, Cantaloupe, Carrots, Cashews, Cauliflower, Celery, Cherries, Chestnuts, Clover, Cocoa, Coconut, Coffee, Corn, Cotton, Cranberries, Cucumber, Currants, Eggplant, Dates, Figs, Flax, Flowers, Grapes, Grasses, Green Beans, Guava, Hazelnuts, Honey, Kiwi Fruit, Lemons, Limes, Macadamia nuts, Maple trees, Mangos, Mushrooms, Mustard Seed, Nuts, Oats, Okra, Onions, Oranges, Orchid Plants, Palm Trees, Papaya, Peaches, Pears, Peppers, Plums, Pomegranates, Quince, Raspberries, Rose Hips, Safflower, Sesame seeds, Strawberries, Sugarcane, Sunflowers, Squash, Tangerines, Teas, Tomatoes, Turnips, Vanilla beans, Walnuts, Watermelon, Wheat, & etc.

Do you eat chicken, turkey, beef, pork, fish, buffalo, venison, and/or lamb? These animals need to eat, of course, and they feed on plants that are in danger of being lost if we lose pollinators like bees! Other herbivores, such as bears, birds, horses, koalas, deer, elephants, hippos, giraffes, pandas, yaks, silkworms, zebras, beavers, kangaroos, rabbits, gorillas, camels, tortoises, iguanas, geckos, butterflies, ants, earthworms, and so on, will all die out from starvation, if their food sources are not pollinated. When trees, grasses, wildflowers and other ground-covers are not pollinated, the rains will bring world-wide floods, mud-slides and dust-storms. Saving bees saves the world as we know it!

From the current Sierra Club newsletter: There's a good chance that you've consumed at least one fruit, vegetable or nut today - maybe even as you're reading this. But what would happen to those foods if the bees were gone? A recent annual survey of beekeepers showed that approximately 5,000 US beekeepers reported a bee loss of 42.1% last year. The crisis facing our bees is so bad, the White House has become involved. After years of pressure from people just like you, the EPA announced a moratorium on all of the new  bee-harming neonicotinoid pesticides (neonic) products and uses. This is a good first step in the right direction, but it does NOTHING to reverse the devastating impact of existing pesticides. This is exactly why we need to act!

A world without bees is unimaginable. But with your help, we won't let that happen. www.sieraclub.org

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MOZAMBIQUE HAS LOST HALF OF ITS ELEPHANTS!

ELEPHANT PORTRAIT

Elephant poaching crises across Africa!

The results of our latest survey are in, and they are heartbreaking. Estimates from Mozambique suggest elephant populations have fallen by about 10,000 in just five years – a staggering 48% drop! That's 10,000 thinking, feeling, majestic creatures. 10,000 individuals defenseless against a poacher's bullet. All dead. And for what? Ivory trinkets? It's clear that we've reached crisis levels. How we respond and what we do next will determine the end of this story and the future of elephants. YOUR generous contribution will go directly to fund anti-poaching patrols, aerial surveillance, criminal prosecutions for poaching and ivory sales, and other key steps to halting the massacres. ~Wildlife Conservation Society

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SOME OTHER THINGS TO CONSIDER:

Photo: suemckay.com

Photo: suemckay.com

“You don’t stop laughing because you grow old; you grow old because you stop laughing.” ~ Michael Pritcha

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PHOTO: www.thebark.com

Photo: www.thebark.com

“An error doesn’t become a mistake until you refuse to correct it.” ~ Orlando A. Battista

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Photo: www.southernhighschool.weebly.com

Photo: www.southernhighschool.weebly.com

“Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one’s courage.” ~ Florentine Proverb

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BUDDHA & LOTUS

“ We have art, so that we shall not be destroyed by the truth.” ~ Friedrich Nietzsche

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MIFF WAVY FILM IMAGE BANNERPlease forward this news-blog to your creative colleagues!

 QUESTIONS OR COMMENTS?

director@moondancefilmfestival.com

moondancefestival@gmail.com

WEBSITE: www.moondancefilmfestival.com

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Last Chance for Regular 2015 Moondance Entries & Tips On Writing for Actors!

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 BEAT THE LAST-MINUTE STAMPEDE

DON’T DELAY: SUBMIT YOUR ENTRY TODAY!

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REGULAR SUBMISSION DEADLINE: MAY 30

For your best chance to win, send in your entry early!

LATE SUBMISSION DEADLINE: JUNE 30

See our submission categories HERE!

Read our submission guidelines HERE!

Entry Form HERE!

Moondance now also accepts scripts for judging in these languages:

FRENCH, SPANISH, GERMAN, DUTCH & AFRICAANS.

Our foreign-language readers are award-winning screenwriters!

Withoutabox for Moondance International Film Festival is now fully active for this season’s call for entries: www.withoutabox.com/login/1240.

MOONDANCE ALSO ACCEPTS SCREENPLAY SUBMISSIONS WRITTEN IN:

SPANISH, GERMAN, DUTCH & AFRICAANS!

Contact Elizabeth at moondancefestival@gmail.com for more info.

Moondance International Film Festival dates:

September 7th & 8th,, 2015

Boulder, Colorado USA

Check out the website for more info:

WEBSITE: www.moondancefilmfestival.com

NEWS-BLOG: www.moondancefilmfestival.com/blog

EMAIL: director@moondancefilmfestival.com

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A NEW ZEALAND MOONDANCER’S GOOD NEWS:

 “In 2013 my stageplay 'Stitched Up' was awarded a finalist placing in the Moondance International Film Festival 2013, and now that play is going to be staged at the Christchurch Centre of Performing Arts from October 1st - Oct. 10th. Auditions are being held now and the booking office for my play is already open!!

I am so excited, Elizabeth, and I want to thank you and Moondance so much for believing in my work and giving me the confidence and support to push it out there to a wider audience. To finally hear actors speaking my lines....there are no words for that.

Once again, many, many thanks to you and Moondance - it's the Moondance name and the significant prestige that it carries with the name that has got me this far. Be assured Moondance will be given all the recognition and fanfare it deserves when my play steps from the curtains and takes centre place of stage.” ~ Celine Gibson, North Otago (the headquarters of Steam Punk), New Zealand

A MOONDANCE WINNER’S GOOD NEWS:

“We have finished our film The World Is My Country!  We are having a WRAP PARTY weekend at our beach house in Playa La Mision in Baja California, Mexico, only an hour’s drive south of San Diego.” ~ Arthur Kanegis, director, producer, Moondance award-winning screenwriter for the script to this film

“This film is a must see for anyone who believes in personal freedom” --Rowland Perkins, Founding President, Creative Artists Agency

“Elegant and delicious storytelling!   A riveting heroic tale with resonance for our time:  a troubled war veteran using his thespian skills in a nonviolent battle to save his soul, the planet, and all humanity.” -- Mimi Kennedy, actor in “Midnight in Paris,” “Dharma & Greg,” Erin Brockovich

“I couldn't take my eyes off the screen … wow! … inspiring & entertaining, the direction & production values are very good & it has fine editing. At the end of the film I just had to rush online to order my own World Passport.  This film can inspire us all to join together to build a better world.”  --Elizabeth English, Founder, Moondance International Film Festival

Our successful crowd-funding campaign raised $42,000 from 149 donors – enabling to further improve and finish the film.   Now we are seeking further funds for our film festival run and to line up a distributor so we can bring this important story to a wide audience. Check out www.1worldcitizen.com to see few short clips, & to catch the vision.

NEWS FROM A MOONDANCER:

The film "10 Days in a Madhouse" will have its world debut at Cannes. I play police officer Tom Bockert. It is the story of Nellie Bly, an investigative journalist who feigns mental illness so she can get inside Blackwell Island insane asylum for women and record the abuses. I escort her to her sanity trial and then the nut house! ~ Mark Lysgaard, 2012 Moondance winning screenwriter

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INSIDER TIPS ON WRITING FOR ACTORS:

typewriter1

“An actor, entering the room through a door…you’ve got nothing. An actor, entering the same room through a window…now you’ve got a situation!” ~ Billy Wilder

You should always write your scripts for the actors! The actors, directors and the audiences will appreciate it. Give them action, give them crises and conflicts to deal with, give your lead roles the best dialog and actions, write visually, giving them interesting and memorable things to do. Make each actor’s role and character distinctive, and have them react and relate to each other in the way that particular character would do, in that situation. Give each lead and secondary actor a specific personality and back-story. And show it; don’t just tell it! Actors and directors despise exposition and explanations in dialog. Have them act it out, in real time or in flash-backs.

Get briefly into the actor’s character, situation, personality, circumstances, needs, problems, fears, preferences, style, past, demeanor, and so on, and why he or she is in this role, in this story…and do it early in the first scene in which the actor appears. A good actor, such as Anthony Hopkins, Meryl Streep, or Dustin Hoffman, can create (and become) this unique character in a flash, sometimes with just a glance, an accent, a grimace, a smile, body language, or a slight twitch.

Keep the physical description of the actor simple, though. You may want to have a character be in his late sixties, for example, and tall, thin, elegant, neatly bearded, wearing a designer tuxedo, speaks with a British accent, and having blue eyes and handsome. This limits whom the director can select for that role. Maybe you were thinking of the late Peter O’Toole for the role? But perhaps Tom Cruise, Samuel Jackson or Bill Murray (or even Julia Roberts or Linda Hunt!) have expressed great interest in the role!

Create unique, but relatable, situations for your actors.

If writing a comedy, like a Western, you might have an actor, instead of riding his or her horse up to the saloon and tying it up at the ol’ hitchin’ post, have him or her ride the horse right through the swinging doors of the saloon and up to the bar!

In a drama, what if the character, male or female, walks alone and sadly along a boardwalk by the ocean, but is wearing a wedding dress, and it’s raining cats and dogs?

How about this: it’s a thriller, and the character fearfully walks down the stairs of a dark and gloomy old mansion, and as he or she passes the ancient family portraits, each one speaks to him or her with a dire warning, but the character just laughs, and goes out into the brilliant sunshine of the beautiful spring garden.

In a character-driven film story, again, show, don’t tell. Let’s say a character is severely depressed, and maybe even suicidal; He or she paces the floor, and then looks into an old, ornate mirror, and the mirror (symbolically) cracks!

Make your characters unique! A child is in the scene, but in a wheelchair, and is playing with his toy airplane, swooping it in the air and making airplane engine sounds. A blind teenage girl is having a tea-party with her dolls, or an obese and homeless old woman is wistfully listening to a twirling-bride music box at the Salvation Army store. A young black boy plays jazz on an out-of-tune upright piano that’s been abandoned on the sidewalk in a slum area. A ragged and dirty homeless person planting flowers in the park where she sleeps.

Are you writing a script for a documentary film? (Yes, doc films always need a script!) Limit “talking-heads” to an absolute minimum, or, preferably, none at all. Script mostly voice-overs while showing whatever the person is talking about. Audiences relate to and remember more of what they see, not as much as what they hear spoken.

Writing for an animation film? The lead character, an altruistic green dolphin, sees a rowboat capsize in the stormy seas, and silently enlists other dolphins, sea turtles and a Mermaid to help save the floundering person from drowning.

Writing for the stage? What if it’s the 1890’s, the character is a playwright, too, and sits typing away at a big black typewriter in an old Victorian mansion? As he writes, he speaks the lines and different characters walk into the scene & act out the role, but, frustrated, the writer then rips the paper out of the typewriter, balls it up and tosses it onto the floor, while the character disappears from the stage.

Writing a story for radio, comedy or drama? Make sure each character speaks distinctly from the others, sighs, laughs, interrupts, slurs, has an accent, groans, hesitates, clears his or her throat, is sarcastic or sweet, or whatever…since radio is an audio play, and the listener must visualize each character.

Writing a short script for a music video? Don’t just show the band playing and singing, and with the audience reactions. Even close-ups and odd camera angles can get boring. Tell an interesting and visual story that works with the band’s style and lyrics!

But don't tell the actor how to play his or her role (in parentheses below the character's name) in the script. That's the job of the actor and the director. 

Each of these visual, cinematic scenarios show the audience who the character is, and without a single word of dialog or exposition. As the late, great director, Billy Wilder, states, above, create interesting situations for your actors!

 “Being a writer is a strenuous marriage between careful observation and just as carefully imagining the truths you haven’t yet had the opportunity to observe. The rest is the necessary, strict toiling with the language; for me this means writing and rewriting the sentences until they sound as spontaneous as good conversation.” ~ John Irving, intro to “Trying to Save Piggy Sneed”

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A MOONDANCER WRITES US:

“For anyone who has never attended a Moondance--it's very special! Small town style, with top-of-the-line people both running the event and there to provide guidance, teach classes and hear pitches, coach novices and seasoned screenwriters into production. Elizabeth Engllish did a session on TITLES! How a Title can make or break a script, and we workshopped titles until something that works happened! It's more casual with more interaction with great people--I've had breakfast, lunch and dinner and "socialized" with dozens of the best in script coaches, trainers, teachers, producers, directors, agents, and all facets of the FILM BIZ, but all the while having a wonderful, relaxing time in a country setting. I have volunteered to help out a few times, and thoroughly enjoyed the feedback on my scripts and the entire event. ~ Vera Holman

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SOME THINGS TO CONSIDER:

Three Planets

“When one tugs at a single thing in nature, one discovers that it is attached to the whole world.” ~ John Muir

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9 BIRDS ON A TWIG

“While you are dreaming of the future, or worrying about it, or regretting the past, the present, which is all you have, may slip away from you and then it is gone.” ~ Hilaire Belloc

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“The Ridge” video, www.cutmedia.com

“The Ridge” video, www.cutmedia.com

“The most rewarding things you do in life are often the ones that look like they cannot be done at all.” ~ Arnold Palmer

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dawnspitfire.wordpress.com

dawnspitfire.wordpress.com

“Life is nothing less than telling stories. We are hard-wired to communicate. Hard-wired to listen, participate, exchange ideas, and entertain. When we stop telling new, fresh, stories…we cease to engage in the "mix". Our lives become smaller…Hyperbole? Hell yes. But sometimes only hyperbole suffices to speak the truth… breathe, be alive and keep telling stories.” ~ Duncan Payne, screenwriter/ & lawyer, LinkedIn.com

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Dominique Browning photo

Dominique Browning photo

“People do not seem to care how nobly they live, only how long, despite the fact that it is within their reach to live nobly, but within no-one’s reach to live long.” ~ Seneca

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Mahatma Gandhi's glasses

Mahatma Gandhi's glasses

“Silence becomes cowardice when the occasion demands speaking out the whole truth, and acting accordingly.” ~ Mahatma Gandhi

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Please forward this news-blog to your creative artist colleagues!

 QUESTIONS OR COMMENTS?

director@moondancefilmfestival.com

moondancefestival@gmail.com

WEBSITE: www.moondancefilmfestival.com

BLOG: www.moondancefilmfestival.com/blog

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