Wednesday, April 27, 2011

by Janet Lawler

The April showers have let up, but now the high temps are kickin' in big time here in NYC. Whew! My neighbors in Astoria are breakin' out their flip-flops, shorts and sun dresses already -- summer is fast on our heels.  I'm lovin' spring though.  Besides my Easter basket of candy, I got to meet some of my personal writing heroes recently.
Seth Meyers of SNL
First up --Seth Meyers, head writer and anchor of "Weekend Update" on Saturday Night Live. We met at C-SPAN's studios on Fifth Avenue (where I freelance). Get ready.  Seth has a new Saturday night gig this weekend. He's the featured speaker at the White House Correspondents dinner in Washington, DC.  He'll be cracking jokes about Obama with the president sitting right next to him.  Talk about pressure to be funny.

Seth says his SNL gig is his real first-paying job right out of college. Really, Seth Meyers?! Really?? Yes.  NBC plucked him out of his improvisational group fresh after college and he's been working on SNL every since.
Live from New York...
Like most writers, Seth is a procrastinator.  Not good since he has to write a live show every week. (Tina Fey gives credit in her new book "Bossy Pants" to Seth for writing that now classic SNL skit between Sarah Palin and Hillary Clinton.   Seth Meyers is not only super cool, but smart and funny... (and um, tall and handsome) what more could you ask for in a writer? 

Next up -- story consultant and author Jen Grisanti. Jen held her mini-workshop and book-signing at The Drama Book Shop in midtown Manhattan earlier this month. She talked about her new book Story Line: Finding Your Gold in Your Life. She offered a free workshop filled with great tips for writers about writing a log line for your own life (no easy task!) -- digging deep when writing your truth -- and writing about universal themes. Jen also has a podcast on iTunes and a YouTube Channel. She's also on Facebook and Twitter.  She's one busy woman, not to mention genuine and down-to-earth as all get out.  Jen will be back in NYC speaking at the Moviemaker Screenwriting Conference June 11-12 with other speakers like Spike Lee and Marilyn Horowitz.  Sign me up!
Janet and Jen at The Drama Book Shop in Manhattan
Everything I really need to know about screenwriting I learned in kindergarten.  Have you seen this video yet?  It's produced by The Onion.  Very funny... and true on so many levels about writing movies today (and cheesy talk show hosts)

Up next here at the NY Screenwriting Life for May -- Ed Burns' new indie flick Newlyweds and the Tribeca Film Festival.  Until next time, enjoy the leftover Easter  jelly beans... and be careful walking around New York in flip-flops.

PS -- here is the C-SPAN interview with Seth Meyers.

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