Blog Tour: Writing for Artists

Joanne ZippelI was delighted when Janet Stilson, a long time colleague of mine through New York Women in Film and Television (NYWIFT) asked me to be part of a writer’s blog tour.  Janet is a talented writer and editor in a variety of different genres, including magazine articles, film scripts, a book, essays, short stories and speeches. You can read Janet’s blog and learn more about her work here.  Thank you for including me Janet!  What a lovely opportunity it is to highlight the work of some of the terrific writers I know who also blog.

As part of the writer’s blog tour, Janet asked me answer the questions posted below.

What am I working on? 

I’ve successfully run my own creative coaching business Zip Creative. Through my company, I’ve extensively worked with all types of artists and creative professionals ranging from writers, to visual artists, musicians, performers and producers.  My creative coaching evolved out of my work as a manager of playwrights and screenwriters where I guided their careers and helped them to pursue their passions and stay motivated and resilient in the face of a very challenging and often negative and arbitrary industry. I’m still doing that with Zip Creative through my blog, workshops, speaking engagements, downloadable publications, the Zip Creative newsletter, and of course, through private coaching sessions.  When I work with artists one on one, an individualized process unfolds that can result in extraordinary shifts and breakthroughs.  My experience in working with writers in particular has given me a thorough understanding of the essential principles and elements of creativity as expressed through the written word.

How does my work differ from others of its genre?  

I support the work of the creative people in all genres. I specialize in helping clients focus on the “inner work” of letting go of the blocks and limiting beliefs that hold them back. Then we focus on the “outer work,” which are the practical business aspects of getting their work out into the world. I also have daily Facebook and Twitter posts that help keep people motivated and on track with their creative projects.

Why do I write what I do? 

My motivation is always to inspire artists to embrace their creative lives fully which includes both the joys and challenges of doing their work.  I am committed to creating content that is valuable to them – content that will help them stay strong and motivated on their creative journeys.   Doing meaningful creative work requires a deep commitment and discipline that is not always easy.  Everyone needs support and a community in which to thrive creatively. My passion is to provide this support to creative artists to clarify their authentic vision for their work, step into their mastery and succeed in taking their work to the highest level.   Zip Creative’s mission is to create and expand community with other artists to share inspiration, resources and collaborate with each other.

How does your writing process work?

My process is pretty straight-forward.  I jot my ideas down quickly in an almost stream of thought way.  Then, I flesh out my thoughts and have a trusted colleague look over my work.  After getting some feedback, I finish off the piece.  I believe it is important to have a very short list of trusted people who know how to give constructive feedback to writers!

And up next, I’m going to introduce you to some wonderful artists who also blog:

Robert Moulthrop is an award-winning playwright and author, with whom I have had the  joy to work over the past two years. He received the 2005 New York Fringe Outstanding Playwriting Award for Half Life (about what happens to the pedophile’s family when he returns home from prison).  His 2006 Fringe play T. L. C. won the outstanding actor award for actress Margaret Daly for her solo turn as an alcoholic mom who will literally do anything to keep her son. Robert’s english language adaptation of  Cry Heart, But Never Break by acclaimed Danish Children’s Author Glenn Ringtved, will be published by Enchanted Lion Books in 2015.  Read Robert’s blog here. His remarkable debut book of short stories To Tell You The Truth can be found here.

Karen Abarbanel is an author published by Random House, McGraw-Hill, and Henry Holt. She is currently polishing a Middle-Grade novel (ages 9-12) and is eager to find a dynamic MG/YA agent who loves historical fantasy with a touch of magic realism. I met Karin when she attended my seminar in Montclair, NJ and I discovered her inspiring motivational blog for writers, when she wrote a lovely blog post about her experience. Her blog focuses on peak performance, passion, overcoming obstacles, juicing up our creativity, building resiliency, improving craft, and the joys of writing. Read Karen’s blog here.

Pia Wilson is a playwright and author with a unique and powerful voice who is also one of my trusted colleagues.  She is the 2014 recipient of the Sarah Verdone writing award, a 2011 Heideman Award finalist for her short play, TURNING THE GLASS AROUND, and a semi-finalist in the 2011 Bay Area Playwrights Festival.  She is a 2012-13 resident with the Lower Manhattan Cultural Council’s Workspace program, a member of the 2008 Emerging Writers Group at The Public Theater, and a 2009 playwriting fellow with the New Jersey State Council on the Arts. Read Pia’s blog here.


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