We Need Your Stories

TCO Movie Poster

March 23rd we are starting a challenge at The Creative Outsiders. We want to encourage you during this time to keep creating, to keep showing up and using your gift of storytelling.

Rules to Engage: You must commit to creating for 20 minutes for the next 20 days, tag us using the hashtag #calledtocreate20 daily during your creating journey, the more entries you have increases your chances to win. Also you must be following us on our social media @thecreativeoutsiders

You can include as much or less on your post as you decide, you must post on Instagram in order for us to see the hashtag and post

At the end of  the twenty days we will choose based upon keeping up with the challenge post/creativity while posting.

We are calling all screenwriters, editors, cinematographers, filmmakers to be consistent in creating and document your process. We are encouraging you to be consistent in your creating.

Upon choosing the winner we will send you a DM notifying you of winning at that time you will receive a prize from us. You must respond in 24 hours before it is given to someone else.


Shivawn Mitchell


Episode 303 : Emelyn Stuart – Producer, Founder of Ocktober Film Festival & CEO, Stuart Cinema & Café

With nearly twenty producing credits under her belt, Emelyn Stuart is widely recognized by filmmakers as a go-to producer whose projects have won awards, gone viral and aired on network TV. After a decade in show business, her knowledge and contributions will forever have an indelible mark in the world of independent entertainment.
Back in 2009 Emelyn got a unique opportunity to use both her strong business acumen along with her love for problem solving. A friend had a script and wanted help with turning it into a film. Emelyn not only fulfilled her friend’s wish, but the film WINGS AND BEER went on to win numerous festival awards and provide high visibility for all involved.

During her journey as a filmmaker, Emelyn regularly left film festivals feeling like the experiences raised more questions than answers. In 2012 she decided to create a festival to address the nagging concerns she felt throughout her producing experiences.
The Ocktober Film Festival (OFF) made its debut in 2013 and was an immediate crowd favorite. Bursting with passionate filmmakers, enthusiastic movie goers, workshops, community initiatives, celebrities and press – this festival became a New York gem through which serious content creators could feel safe premiering their work. The festival maintains that reputation today.
Being the owner of both a film production company, and a thriving film festival presented Emelyn with yet more challenges. Staying true to her style, she combined her business knowledge with another one of her interests, community.
In September of 2018, Emelyn Stuart made history when she opened STUART CINEMA & CAFÉ in trendy Greenpoint, Brooklyn. It is the culmination of all the knowledge Emelyn has acquired from working closely with filmmakers over the last ten years. Besides the major accomplishment of owning the movie theater outright, with no loans – Emelyn did it without any financial partners or investors. She is the first Afro Latina to accomplish this feat in the entire borough of Brooklyn.

Emelyn Stuart continues to demonstrate the importance of shattering glass ceilings in entertainment. Her example is one to which many young girls can look to for inspiration and encouragement.

Listen HERE and learn as we chat about:
Starting Stuart Cinema Cafe
What do you bring to the table as a filmmaker
Opening doors for minority filmmakers
Starting where you are as a filmmaker

Episode Powered by Location Locked. Location Locked is for filmmakers who hate spending hours searching for locations and crewing up. With our review system in place, you’re able to learn more about your potential hire before you ever reach out. Also, the opportunity to book locations and production staff from the site means you spend less time searching for the right people and more time developing the work. It’s a win-win. locationlocked.com

If you like this episode, share it + subscribe + leave a review (or do both)
The more reviews, the greater chance someone else will hear these episodes and decide it’s possible to be a filmmakers.

For Creatives By Creatives : Location Locked

Season 3 of our Podcast for women filmmakers is back and if you aren’t familiar with what we do, simply put we show you it’s possible to live your filmmaking dreams through the journey of other women filmmakers. Its our version of film school in under an hour. That’s why we are excited to announce our Sponsors for Season 3 Location Locked.

Location Locked was conceptualized in 2018 after Latasha Kennedy and Rani Robinson, of LMK Entertainment Group, struggled to find a location to shoot Latasha’s film, One Last Goodbye. After a grueling, exhaustive search on some of the largest rental property platforms, they were compelled to reach out to their network and friends to help them find a suitable location without the exorbitant fees. To their surprise, the response was overwhelming and while a location came through, Latasha and Rani were greatly impacted by their peers’ generosity and eagerness to help. Rather than chalk the process up to “one crazy experience,” Latasha and Rani decided to create an opportunity for filmmakers and content creators to an easier and more cost effective way to lock in a location.

Thus, you have Location Locked – a platform for artists to find and offer their peers a hand up and help creatives dreams of creating come true. Whether bringing together a community of film and art enthusiasts, helping artists find cost effective locations that support their stories, or creating income opportunities for artists across the globe, we believe that the filmmaking community has everything we need to succeed and tell our stories – and it starts with us.
Location Locked is built by creatives and for creatives.

Who is Location Locked for?

It’s simple: Location Locked is for filmmakers who hate spending hours searching for locations and crewing up. With our review system in place, you’re able to learn more about your potential hire before you ever reach out. Also, the opportunity to book locations and production staff from the site means you spend less time searching for the right people and more time developing the work. It’s a win-win.

Who should list on Location Locked?

Owners of offices, co-working spaces, cafes, spare rooms and any under utilized space are encouraged to register their spaces on our website at locationlocked.com. Also, creatives that work as production staff including makeup artists, wardrobe stylists, script consultants, and editors are also encouraged to list on the site. You can also post your events on Location Locked with a one-time fee!

Get Started now!


info@locationlocked.com Email



The Director-Actor Relationship

When a crew has spent all day building, lighting and framing the world around them, one misstep from an actor can feel like the ultimate disappointment. If they’re unprepared, frazzled, or lost, a set’s collective frustration becomes palpable. Because truth be told, every ounce of preparation – every dime spent – all comes down to them. A shot can look gorgeous and sound incredible, but if your performer is visibly uncomfortable or off, your perfectly-lit, perfectly focused take goes in the garbage. Too many of those garbage takes, and you’ll watch helplessly as your story goes up in smoke.


As a director, I hate it when I hear the very difficult job of acting being trashed, or made light of by other departments. Sure, actors get cushy trailers and later call times, but their work makes or breaks your project. Taking their role for granted, mistreating them, or failing to provide them with every possible opportunity to craft a high-quality performance is cutting yourself off at the knees. The Director-Actor Relationship is crucially important – and it begins with a director doing some serious listening.

Like many filmmakers, I began my career by putting friends in front of the lens. My early work was almost entirely cast with actors I knew from theatre school, workshops or just my social circle. Part of this was, of course, driven by necessity – at the time, every dollar of every ultramicrobudget went to camera & crafty. But a lucky side effect was a lot of built-in familiarity. Rapport and a common creative language was always pre-established. Because the actors and I could get on the same page in a quick conversation – even moments before calling action – I was free to spend more time wrestling with the technical elements of directing.

When I stepped outside of this cozy comfort zone and began working with actors who were new to me, I quickly learned that I’d need to find a way to form deep trust on the fly. There was trial and major error. There were line readings. There were days where I held back out of fear and effectively stunted a performance that would’ve shone with a gentle push. There were days where I jumped around like a Muppet doing a one woman show because I couldn’t verbalize blocking.

…it’s possible that I still do that.

My advice to all directors is to rehearse, minimally, if at all possible. It doesn’t ruin the magic. It builds collaborative pathways in a time & space where getting it ‘wrong’ is allowed. If rehearsals are not an option, I advocate for a sit-down with lead actors before shooting begins, to suss out each other’s styles of communication. I personally like to know which side of their face an actor favors, if they prefer physical or verbal direction, and where we have common ground, both as artists and ‘civilians.’

Most of all, I find it essential that every performer on my set understand that their total safety is my top priority. That ‘safety’ of course applies to stunts and physical challenges, but to me, it’s also a promise that the actor’s image and talents will be well-represented. This gives both sides of the table the freedom and permission to figure out the puzzle together.

In any of these pre-production scenarios, giving your actors tonal parameters & references is crucial. And that means more than just “this is a comedy!” vs. “this is a drama.” As actress Helen Highfield puts it, “It’ll be real confusing if [a director] thinks you’re making Barry and you think you’re making Brooklyn Nine Nine.” Both acting and directing require a person to make thousands of tiny, vital choices. If you’ve communicated the tone and framework of the ‘vision’ & fostered a safe environment for your actor, you will both make choices that serve the whole of the film.

Though I still cast friends as often as I can – and feel very fortunate to know a large pool of incredible actors – I’ve now grown to relish the opportunity to form new relationships & methods of communication with performers. When those rare moments of discomfort arrive, I try to bring it back to that established trust -reminding both of us that we are all there to make the same thing. That we’re just people, with the unique good fortune to play make believe for a living.


Maggie F. Levin is a screenwriter & director with rock n’ roll roots.  Recently, Maggie worked as a director and staff writer on Season 2 of MISS 2059 (New Form Digital/go90). She is the director of THE FRIENDLESS FIVE (Fullscreen) and writer-director of the groundbreaking VR film VAIN: THIS PARTY SUCKS (Nashville Film Festival, VeerVR & more). Other directing credits include YouTube Multicultural’s REGISTER TO VOTE IN 1:34 campaign, FAE VR (STX Entertainment).

Photo Credit: Sela Shiloni


The Write Track – Screenwriter workbook Giveaway



Tell us a little about yourself?

Any Possbility.jpg

I run a site called Any Possibility, which gives writers the resources, tools, and motivation to jumpstart their career. The idea came to me when I was an assistant at a talent agency. Now, as a script reader in Los Angeles, I evaluate stories for screenwriting competitions as well as a studio. My day-to-day consists of diving into different books and scripts to summarize and assess the strengths and weaknesses of the material. It’s a fun job!

Why did you decide to create this workbook for screenwriters?

I want to help writers take action. Work and life responsibilities make it hard to prioritize and make time to follow creative pursuits. You’re busy, and when you’re busy, writing can get left on the back burner or feel uninspired.

It’s easy to get stuck, and I personally know that feeling well. At one point, I didn’t have the slightest idea what to do about it. Through a combination of time, advancing in my career, and talking with other writers, I saw the similarities that lead to writing successes both big and small – and those small successes add up.


So why not work from the very beginning, step-by-step to build a solid career. It’s easy to focus on the ins and outs of selling a script or pitching an idea, but what if you aren’t there yet? What if you still need to sit down and type up your idea? What if, more than anything, you want to focus on finishing your script and getting the feedback you need to move that script forward?

The Write Track helps writers focus. You assess and prioritize your goals, then implement systems and routines to accomplish those goals both in writing and networking.

You noted this is NOT a how-to-write book but definitely IS about strategies to make your goals happen. Why did you opt to make this not about writing as screenwriting? And do you find that most screenwriters don’t succeed in finishing their script because of not having a strategy?

Any Possibility was founded on the principle of giving creatives tools to treat themselves like a business. You are your own boss. You set the hours, do the research, and determine the workflow. Without a game plan, it can get overwhelming. There are so many fantastic resources for how-to-write, but there’s much less about creating strategies, learning about the industry, and staying self-motivated. The Write Track can be used to draw up your business plan for the year.


What sets your book apart from other tools that help screenwriters?
It doesn’t prescribe to one line of thinking on writing but rather shows you options to make progress on your own. We all come at it from different angles, and that’s okay.

What is one aspect of your book that readers may find that they wouldn’t expect to be in there?
Networking, probably. People always resist it. “If the script is good enough, it shouldn’t matter” is something I hear a lot. That’s simply not true. Building your network is instrumental in your writing career.

How can our readers connect with you? And do you have plans on creating an accountability group for those who utilize your book?
Come hang out in the Hollywood Hustle Facebook Group! I haven’t considered an accountability group, but that’s a great idea.

What’s next for you?
I want to build the Any Possibility community and keep encouraging writers. I hope this workbook leads into a new project, and I have a couple of ideas, so we’ll see!

Contest Rules

You have a chance to win The Write Track written by Sam of Any Possibility  just before 2018. We want you to start your year off with the right tools so you can finish that screenplay that’s been neglected all year. To Enter please follow the details below.

Prize: The Write Track Workbook valued at 17.99

Duration: The sweepstakes will begin December 18th and end December 27th at 5pm EST.
How to enter: You can enter two ways. If you enter both ways your chances at winning double.

Email the creative outsiders at thecreativeoutsiders (at) gmail.com and briefly explain why The Write Track will be an asset to your screenwriting journey, one goal as a screenwriter for 2018 and do you agree to leave a review or rating about the book.

Subscribe to our mailing list here.
Who can enter: Entrants must be over eighteen years of age in the United States. Not available to any residents outside of the United States.
How the winner is chosen: The winner will be chosen at random.
How the winner will be notified: The winner will be notified by email on December 28th and need to respond back with their mailing address by 9 pm EST on the 28th. If winner doesn’t another person will be chosen at random.
How the prize will be delivered: The workbook will be mailed out on the 29th of December.

Film Career Guidance with Sarah Hawkins


My comfy, safe bubble burst once I finished my MFA in screenwriting. All I could think about after graduation was what’s next? In school my cohort had the plan of staying a tight community that was full of support and yearly writing sessions where we would meet up, write our hearts out and catch the eye of someone who was willing to fund our project. But, it seems as if life has interrupted our plans and writing has become this solo task that we are navigating through without a guide.

I do believe there is support and a community for women filmmakers but you can only pick someone’s brain but so much because just like you they are trying to figure out “the way” for themselves. So I jumped at the opportunity after interviewing Sarah on our podcast to try one of her services (FYI I paid, I don’t believe in the hook up) Film Career Guidance.

Prior to talking to Sarah my goals were:

  • To gain clarity personally as a creative filmmaker
  • Clarity on the direction with The Creative Outsiders
  • Action steps so I can leave my 9 to 5
  • Assessment of what was working and what wasn’t

What to expect?

  • Sarah will contact you via email after receiving the confirmation of the appointment. She will ask you for clarity on what you want to discuss in particular during the session (so she can prepare for the call).
    • Note, be honest with what you need or your uncertainty. I personally rambled a bit on my response back to her. Remember you can’t get real help if you aren’t really honest!
  • Our Call was 1 hour as promised and it was full of information. I suggest that you take your own personal notes during the call because she covers a lot of information. She gave me practical advice but also plenty of resources I wasn’t aware of and an honest assessment of my strengths. She also encouraged me to OWN my strengths.
    • Note, it’s easy to start to feel overwhelmed during the session because it’s so much information but just take a breather and one step at a time.
  • Once the session is over she does follow up with any information she promised she would provide along with a recap. My notes were a lot more extensive (but I’m a super note taker).

Overall, this was a great experience and I no longer felt like I was in the dark with the direction I needed to go. I recommend that you utilize this service if you are uncertain with your filmmaking career. Click HERE if you are interested 🙂

Shivawn Hill, is a writer, director and a storyteller at heart. She’s currently in post production with her short documentary film. She believes that one day soon she’ll form the ultimate group of Storytellers who will travel the world to share the stories of creative peculiar people.