SPRING AWAKENINGS! Trees are blossoming, green sprouts are everywhere, flowers are coming up, birds are singing, honey-bees are buzzing, the weather is sunny and warm, and the skies are blue again! It’s time to get over those winter blues! And now is the time to send in your films, written works and music to Moondance for your big chance to win at the 2012 film festival!


~~~~ April 1 – 30, 2012 ~~~~

In celebration of spring, all films, written works and music submitted to Moondance and postmarked during the month of April can send in:


*Pay the full entry fee for the first one, and send the second one (of an equal or lesser entry fee) for free. Spring Special discounted two-for-one entry fees are available only via the Moondance official entry form and Acteva. All submissions postmarked during the month of April, are eligible!

AND! Three (3) lucky selected April entrants will each receive one V.I.P. All-festival pass to the 2012 Moondance Film Festival event!

3 Easy Ways to Submit Your Entry:

1. MIFF Entry Form


2. Acteva Online Entry



(no discount, no two-fers)

Thanks a million to all those talented people who sent in their entries for the Moondance March Madness specials!

Check out the Moondance website for more info!


lists Moondance as one of the top ten film festival competitions

worth the entry fee!


Cynthia Butler, Moondance’s very popular reader will write a one-page critique and assessment of your submitted screenplay, stageplay, teleplay or up to 3 short stories. Check off the box for critiques on the Moondance entry form. The fee is a nominal $50 for each critique requested during the Moondance Springtime Special days!

BE SURE YOU ARE SUBSCRIBED TO OUR NEWS BLOG in order to be kept up-to-date about all of the Moondance deadlines, news, specials and happenings! Sign up for it now, at:



“I’m delighted to share that my play ‘Nuclear Family’ (which won the Moondance Atlantis Award for Best Stageplay 2011) and has already been produced in festivals in Adelaide, London and Edinburgh, will have its New Zealand premiere in July this year, very exciting. Needless to say, the Moondance laurels happily accompany the graphics in our poster. ~ Desiree Gezentsvey




On the weekend of Earth Day, April 22, people around the world will celebrate the planet we live on, the food that it provides, its natural habitats,  and the people and animals with whom we share it. There are many ways to participate:

1) Attend a Picnic — The Nature Conservancy is holding picnic events all around the world — from Melbourne, Australia to Boulder, Colorado. Locations are added weekly, so check out our map to find events in your area

2) Host a Picnic — Don’t see an event near you? Host your own picnic and invite family and friends. Your picnic could even help us set a world record

3) Donate or Fundraise — Help us protect green space, and the lands that provide our food and clean water. Make a donation, or turn your picnic into a fundraising event!



Host the very best of Moondance films, professional workshops & popular networking parties in your community, anywhere in the US and in the world! You really can bring Moondance to your area.

Contact Elizabeth English now at to discuss the details and fabulous benefits of this special opportunity.



Mermaid7seas Productions, an enthusiastic Moondance International Film Festival sponsor, now offers reading services, critiques, coverage and edits to all Moondance writers & filmmakers, composers and to production companies and agencies, at a special discount price!

Focusing on the elements crucial to creating a compelling and readable script, or a winning, marketable film or film score, 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 prodco reader, and will assist in advancing your script or film up toward WINNER in competitions & film festivals. An advantage of this low-cost critique service is that we will help you prepare your project before sending it to producers, agents, managers and others who may have requested it.

 Theme, Premise, Genre, Concept, Story, Plot, Subplots, Subtext, Principal Characters, Cast-ability, Relationships, Depth of Characterizations, Dialogue, Exposition, Syntax, Conflict, Action, Scene, Humor, Tone, Attitudes, Pace, Flow, POV, Marketability, Audience Appeal, Interest, Visualization, Transitions, Balance, Titles and Loglines, Screenplay Evaluation or Film Evaluation!

Visit the Mermaid7seas website and contact Elizabeth English now, to get your script or film ready to win any competitions and/or enthusiastic attention from buyers!




By Leo Babauta

A simple life has a different meaning and a different value for every person. For me, it means eliminating all but the essential, eschewing chaos for peace, and spending your time doing what’s important to you.

It means getting rid of many of the things you do so you can spend time with people you love and do the things you love. It means getting rid of the clutter so you are left with only that which gives you value.

However, getting to simplicity isn’t always a simple process. It’s a journey, not a destination, and it can often be a journey of two steps forward, and one backward. If you’re interested in simplifying your life, this is a great starter’s guide!




1. Many US Republican senators and congressional representatives oppose the Violence Against Women Act!

This landmark legislation has provided support to domestic abuse survivors and has given prosecutors the resources to convict violent abusers — but Republicans refuse to renew it. The same Republicans, with their apparently radical, anti-women agenda, also have been said to refuse to allow any women’s voices to be heard on their all-male panel about contraception. Go to for more info & to sign the petition.

2. The rhino is being hunted into extinction and could disappear forever unless we act now. Shocking new statistics show 440 rhinos were brutally killed by poachers last year in South Africa alone. Fueling this devastation is a huge spike in demand for rhino horns, used for bogus cancer cures, hangover remedies, supposed male sexual enhancement, and good luck charms. So far this year, one rhino has been killed every single day in South Africa. Horns now have a street value of over $65,000 a kilo — more expensive than gold or platinum. The situation is so dire that the threat has even spread into many world zoos, which are now on red-alert for rhino-killing gangs! Let’s raise a giant outcry to push for new protections to save rhinos from certain extinction. We must demand a complete ban on all rhino trade — from anywhere, to anywhere — when countries meet at the next crucial international wildlife trade summit in July. Please SIGN THIS PETITION now, to take immediate action to help save the rhinos!

Dürer's Rhinoceros, in a woodcut from 1515



photo by N.A.

People will forget what you said. People will forget what you did. But people will never forget how you made them feel.”  ~ Maya Angelou

“Listen, can you hear it? Spring’s sweet cantata. The strains of grass pushing up through the snow. The song of buds swelling on the vine. The tender tympani of a baby robin’s heart. Spring!” ~ Diane Frolov and Andrew Schneider, Northern Exposure, “Wake Up Call”, 1992

photo by S.V.

You are as young as your faith, as old as your doubt; as young as your self-confidence, as old as your fear; as young as your hope, as old as your despair.  ~Douglas MacArthur

House in Orlando, Florida where Jack Kerouac lived and wrote "The Dharma Bums"

“Popular opinion is, of course, a form of feedback and, as such, implicit peer advice.  ~ Jack Kerouac

Don Quixote ink drawing by Pablo Picasso

“Every child is an artist. The problem is how to remain an artist once we grow up.” ~ Pablo Picasso

“I love the way cherry trees writhe and gnarl as they age, the way they bear their scars. These trees have a great deal to teach us about wabi-sabi*, a Japanese aesthetic of beautiful imperfection. I visit this particular tree frequently. It looks like it is trying to say something.” ~ Dominique Browning, text & photo: Slow Love Life blog,

  • Wabi-sabi represents a comprehensive Japanese world view or aesthetic centered on the acceptance of transience. The aesthetic is sometimes described as one of beauty that is “imperfect, impermanent, and incomplete”. Characteristics of the wabi-sabi aesthetic include asymmetry, asperity (roughness or irregularity), simplicity, economy, austerity, modesty, intimacy and appreciation of the ingenuous integrity of natural objects and processes. Wabi-sabi nurtures all that is authentic by acknowledging three simple realities: nothing lasts, nothing is finished, and nothing is perfect. (info from
  • Hagi ware Japanese tea bowl, 18th-19th century, Freer Gallery of Art



This music & video will surely make you smile and tap your foot! Edgar Meyer, Chris Thile, Stuart Duncan, Yo-Yo Ma, and vocalist Aoife O’Donovan perform “Here and Heaven” from the album, “The Goat Rodeo Sessions”. The Goat Rodeo Sessions is an ambitious and groundbreaking project that brings together four string virtuosos: world-renowned cellist Yo-Yo Ma, fiddler Stuart Duncan, bassist Edgar Meyer and mandolinist Chris Thile, with female vocalist Aoife O’Donovan. While each artist is a prominent figure in his or her own music sphere, they have come together as a unified ensemble on a most remarkable and organic cross-genre project. This music and video will make your day!

Art Opportunities Monthly (AOM) This is the list professionals trust, and is a carefully screened art opportunities list for traditional and contemporary artists working in painting, sculpture, photography, film, video, printmaking, book art, computer art, collage, weaving, fiber, textiles, ceramics, papermaking, mixed media, photography, computer art, monoprint, pastel, performance art, drawing, enameling, wood carving, crafts, jewelry, installation art, new media, public art, gouache, watercolor painting and every other visual medium. It is for those working in any style or geographic location.

Brain Pickings has a free weekly newsletter, and people say it’s cool! It comes out on Sundays and offers the week’s best articles. Brain Pickings is the brain-child of Maria Popova, a cultural curator and curious mind at large, who also writes for Wired UK, The Atlantic and Design Observer, among others.


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