BUZZ: August 2015  

The WGA does not endorse any particular method or approach to screenwriting. Classes listed below are not Guild-sponsored events. To see a list of all upcoming Guild-sponsored events, go to the GUILD CALENDAR.  

To list your member-related event or announcement on Buzz, contact the CALENDAR EDITOR.  

For a list of special opportunities for members, go to our SPECIAL OFFERS page.

Deirdre Hanssen invites all WGAW members to Santa Barbara for monthly “First Fridays” networking lunches. Email Deirdre directly to check whether a gathering is scheduled in the upcoming month, time, location (usually Stella Mare’s French Country Cuisine in Montecito), and to be added to the email reminder list.

Syrie James’s page-turning novel Nocturne, named Best of the Year by Suspense Magazine and Bookbub, is now available for $2.99 on Kindle and other e-book platforms, as an audio book, and in trade paperback. On a stormy Colorado night on a lonely mountain road, Nicole Whitcomb is saved from death by a fascinating, mysterious stranger with whom she's snowbound for days. Library Journal called Nocturne "Lyrical, lush, and intensely romantic," and The Romance Reviews gave it 5 stars, declaring, "Ms. James has given us an incredibly sexy story set in the beauty of an unspoiled frozen tundra." Learn more about Syrie and all her books at

Michael January’s novel Frankenstein Diaries: The Romantics – The Secret Memoirs of Mary Shelley debuted in June with Winged Lion Publications and Prestbury Books, and is now available via Amazon in paperback and for Kindle. A speculative collaboration with Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley from her journal diaries, the book recreates the 1814 elopement trip of the 16-year old future author and Percy Byssche Shelley.

Five-time Emmy Award-winning Rob Kutner (CONAN, Daily Show) has debuted his sci-fi comedy comic book series SHRINKAGE at online-comics-reader Farrago Comics. Tiny aliens have taken over the U.S. President's brain. So brilliant, dysfunctional neuroscientist Lana Percy and crusty Cold War 3-1/2 star General Storage McCrain are shrunk down and injected up the Most Powerful Nose In The Free World to fight them. As written up in Tech Times and CNET, SHRINKAGE is the first original series from Farrago, available for free download to your device at

Josefina Lopez opens her updated play Real Women Have Curves at the Pasadena Playhouse, Sept. 8-Oct. 4. Set in a tiny sewing factory in East Los Angeles, five full-figured women race to meet an impossible deadline to keep the small business alive. This award-winning comedy was the basis for the 2002 film of the same name starring America Ferrera and has been updated for the Playhouse’s 2015 production. Real Women Have Curves celebrates real bodies, life in southern California, and the incredible bond when women work together. WGAW members have access to discount code (login required) to be posted mid-August in Special Offers.

Devra Maza's feature story "Art of Resistance: Charlie Hebdo's Antonio Fischetti and Judea Pearl on the War on Journalists" has been published by The Huffington Post. The article, featured on The World Post page, contains interviews with Fischetti, a survivor of the Charlie Hebdo massacre, and Pearl, father of the slain Wall Street Journal reporter, upon the presentation of The Los Angeles Press Club's Daniel Pearl Award to Charlie Hebdo. The two men share moving insights into how they use the arts of words, illustration and music in defense of free speech. For more on Devra and her other articles, follow her on Twitter @devramaza and visit

Cinco Paul and Ken Daurio are hosting a new film festival celebrating screenwriters called The Greatest Movies Ever Written. Taking place September 25-26 in Agoura Hills, the inaugural festival features conversations with Lowell Ganz presenting Parenthood (Fri. 9/25, click on gray “6:00 [p.m.]” screening start time to get to ticketing page), Paul and Daurio presenting Despicable Me (Sat. 9/26, 11 a.m.), Brent Maddock & S.S. Wilson presenting Tremors (Sat. 9/26, 2 p.m.), and Caroline Thompson presenting Edward Scissorhands (Sat. 9/26, 6 p.m.). For a VIP pass admitting entrance to all four screenings, visit here and click on gray “6:00” to get to order your tickets. Enjoy!

Ken Pisani is executive producer and co-writer of the documentary Unexpected Justice (co-writer/director Greg Jacobs) chronicling a 1969 corruption scandal that rocked the Illinois judiciary, and launched a little-known Chicago lawyer named John Paul Stevens on the path to the U.S. Supreme Court. Based on the book Illinois Justice by Kenneth A. Manaster, the film debuts Friday, Sept. 18, 7:30 pm on WTTW in Chicago before rolling out to nationwide PBS affiliates.

Joelle Sellner's Saved by The Bell graphic novel debuted in July, released by IDW and Lion Forge comics. All your favorite characters -- Zack, Slater, Kelly, Lisa, Screech, and Jessie (and Mr. Belding, of course!) -- are back at Bayside High for freshman year, trading in brick phones and mullets for iPhones and Twitter accounts. Available in comic book stores or via above Amazon link in paperback or for Kindle.

In the spirit of fostering creativity, building friendships, and maybe lowering BP by venting industry frustrations, Fred Shafferman invites all writers to join a weekly indoor full-court WGA basketball game. Wednesdays 6-8 p.m. in Hollywood and Sundays 9:30 a.m. in North Hollywood. Email Fred for details.


Diversity Attribute Directory Now Functional!
It is now possible to search for a WGA member according to self-identified diversity attributes. The information is available through the WGAW website using this link: This online directory of writers from diverse backgrounds can be used as a resource for producers, executives, directors and other industry professionals. To be included, members must grant permission for publication of their diversity attributes. Sign in or create your MyWGAW Account via: Go to the "change attributes" link on the left side of your myWGAW homepage, and click Yes under each “OK to publish”. For technical support with your My WGAW Account, call (323) 782-4885, M-F, 9 a.m.-6 p.m.