Today we’d like to introduce you to Pilar Alessandra.
So, before we jump into specific questions about the business, why don’t you give us some details about you and your story.
I started as a script reader at Amblin and DreamWorks and discovered that I loved teaching when I taught story analysis at UCLA Extension. When I was pregnant with my first daughter I decided to jump into starting my own writer’s studio, “On the Page,” to teach classes in screenwriting and TV writing. This allowed me to apply the tools and techniques of good writing I’d seen in my years of analyzing scripts and to guide writers toward making their own scripts air-tight and industry ready. For me, this work was so much more rewarding than simply saying “yes” or “no” to submitted scripts! (An extra perk: my husband stopped referring to me by the nickname “Crusher of Dreams.”) The progress writers made in my classes – given even the smallest amount of time to get something “on the page,” – led me to write a book called, “The Coffee Break Screenwriter” and to create my podcast “On the Page,” currently in its tenth year. Now, in addition to the classes I teach in Studio City, I speak internationally on writing, pitching and story-analysis.
Overall, has it been relatively smooth? If not, what were some of the struggles along the way?
There’s little to complain about when you’re surrounded by creative people inventing interesting stories. But, the juggle of work and family has not always been easy.
My daughters (13 and 17) have grown accustomed to a mom who teaches on weekends and sometimes leaves town for days. I’m lucky to have a husband who keeps the daily routine consistent for them, and I’m also hoping that having a working mother who does what she loves is a good example for them.
On the Page – what should we know? What do you guys do best? What sets you apart from the competition?
I teach and consult with screenwriters and TV writers at all levels. My writer’s studio is in Los Angeles and there I offer six-week, weekend and one-day classes in screenwriting, TV writing and pitching. I also teach around the world, and have trained writers in Beijing, London, Rome, Cape Town, Warsaw, Dublin and more. I specialize in helping people find the true potential of their story and pages by getting to the point and cutting through the fat. I’m proud of the many success stories that have come out of the On the Page Writers Studio with writers getting staffed on major shows, winning prestigious contests, selling or optioning their work or just finishing a script they’ve had in their head. I think what sets me apart is a “let’s do this” attitude that makes my classes productive and fun. I don’t believe in just lecturing people or spending a class telling them that they’re in a tough industry. They know they’re in a tough industry. My job is to help them become skilled storytellers who write great scripts and get work doing what they love.
What is “success” or “successful” for you?
There’s no greater marker of my success than the success of my students and clients. When they get represented, are staffed on shows, win contests or just complete a well written script, it confirms that the methods I’m teaching work and the notes I give make a difference.
- Monthly writing marathons are $60
- Writing classes range from $200 – $425
- Private consultations range from $225 – $525
- Website: www.onthepage.tv
- Email: email@example.com
- Instagram: @onthepage
- Twitter: @onthepage
- Other: http://onthepage.libsyn.com