Before Peanuts, Alice Guy Blaché Presented the First True Meaning of Christmas Film – Dr. Rosanne Welch, Script Magazine, December 2023

Before Peanuts, Alice Guy Blaché Presented the First True Meaning of Christmas Film  – Dr. Rosanne Welch, Script Magazine, December  2023

Though she never wrote a horror film, to celebrate Halloween this month’s focus is screenwriter, poet, and Pulitzer Prize-winning author, Zoe Akins, born on October 30, 1886. In 1935 Akins would become the third woman to win the Pulitzer Prize for Drama, the highest honor for a Broadway play in the United States, after Zona Gale (1921) and Susan Glaspell (1931). Akins’ win came from her dramatization of Edith Wharton’s The Old Maid. Four years later the play was adapted by Casey Robinson into a film starring Bette Davis, even though Akins had begun adapting plays and turning out her own screenplays in the early 1930s. Throughout her career, she collaborated with some of the most important women both behind and in front of the cameras which has kept her work in the public eye.

Read Before Peanuts, Alice Guy Blaché Presented the First True Meaning of Christmas Film


Read about more women from early Hollywood

 

From Silents to Talkies to TV Lenore J. Coffee Did It All – Dr. Rosanne Welch, Script Magazine, November 2023

From Silents to Talkies to TV Lenore J. Coffee Did It All – Dr. Rosanne Welch, Script Magazine, November 2023

Though she never wrote a horror film, to celebrate Halloween this month’s focus is screenwriter, poet, and Pulitzer Prize-winning author, Zoe Akins, born on October 30, 1886. In 1935 Akins would become the third woman to win the Pulitzer Prize for Drama, the highest honor for a Broadway play in the United States, after Zona Gale (1921) and Susan Glaspell (1931). Akins’ win came from her dramatization of Edith Wharton’s The Old Maid. Four years later the play was adapted by Casey Robinson into a film starring Bette Davis, even though Akins had begun adapting plays and turning out her own screenplays in the early 1930s. Throughout her career, she collaborated with some of the most important women both behind and in front of the cameras which has kept her work in the public eye.

Read From Silents to Talkies to TV Lenore J. Coffee Did It All


Read about more women from early Hollywood

 

Rosanne Writes on Doctor Who, “The King’s Demons”, and more in the new book, Outside In Regenerates [Books]

63 New Perspectives on 163 Classic DOCTOR WHO Stories by 163 Writers

While I am quite proud of all the larger publishers I have worked with I also deeply enjoy supporting smaller presses and their niche work – especially when it comes to writing about shows I’ve loved for a long time. That’s what ATB offers every time they email me about another book in their “Outside/In” series.

They publish “thoughtful non-fiction books that explore the history of pop culture with insightful and entertaining commentary from a diverse array of writers, authors, and editors”. So far I’ve had essays in their books on the original Star Trek (on the episode ‘This Side of Paradise’) and in the book on Buffy the Vampire Slayer (on the episode ‘Hush’). My latest is an essay on the ‘Kings Demons’ episode of the Peter Davison era of classic Doctor Who. 

These are funny essays to write – and read – for deep, deep fans of these shows and it’s been fun to be involved.

Reading: Wild Girls: How the Outdoors Shaped the Women Who Challenged a Nation

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As the semester winds toward the holiday season more time for reading opens up and I love finding new books to read – both fiction and non. My Thanksgiving read this week was Wild Girls: How the Outdoors Shaped the Women Who Challenged a Nation by Harvard professor Tiya Miles.

In this short book, she traces the way playing in the outdoors shaped the lives of several American activist women from Harriet Tubman to Louisa May Alcott to Native American writer Zitkála-ŠáNative/Gertrude Bonnin to Dolores Huerta. It added female names to my list of women to be remembered and reminded to get outside this holiday season and play in the dirt.

From the publisher…

Named a Best Nonfiction Book of the Year by Publishers Weekly

An award-winning historian shows how girls who found self-understanding in the natural world became women who changed America.

Harriet Tubman, forced to labor outdoors on a Maryland plantation, learned from the land a terrain for escape. Louisa May Alcott ran wild, eluding gendered expectations in New England. The Indigenous women’s basketball team from Fort Shaw, Montana, recaptured a sense of pride in physical prowess as they trounced the white teams of the 1904 World’s Fair. Celebrating women like these who acted on their confidence outdoors, Wild Girls brings new context to misunderstood icons like Sacagawea and Pocahontas, and to underappreciated figures like Native American activist writer Zitkála-Šá, also known as Gertrude Bonnin, farmworkers’ champion Dolores Huerta, and labor and Civil Rights organizer Grace Lee Boggs.

This beautiful, meditative work of history puts girls of all races—and the landscapes they loved—at center stage and reveals the impact of the outdoors on women’s independence, resourcefulness, and vision. For these trailblazing women of the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, navigating the woods, following the stars, playing sports, and taking to the streets in peaceful protest were not only joyful pursuits, but also techniques to resist assimilation, racism, and sexism. Lyrically written and full of archival discoveries, Wild Girls evokes landscapes as richly as the girls who roamed in them—and argues for equal access to outdoor spaces for young women of every race and class today.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Tiya Miles is the Michael Garvey Professor of History at Harvard University, the author of five prize-winning works on the history of slavery and early American race relations, and a 2011 MacArthur Fellowship recipient. She was the founder and director of the Michigan-based ECO Girls program, and she is the author of the National Book Award–winning, New York Times best-selling All That She Carried. She lives in Cambridge, Massachusetts.

02 Early History Episodes from The Real History Behind the Historic Episodes of Doctor Who with Dr. Rosanne Welch – SD Who Con 2023

In this presentation given at the 2023 San Diego WhoCon I talked about what really happened at Pompeii on volcano day; the agricultural knowledge of the Aztecs; when Robin Hood began appearing in literature, and the bravery of Noor Inayat Khan and Rosa Parks.

02  Early Histrory Episodes from The Real History Behind the Historic Episodes of Doctor Who with Dr. Rosanne Welch - SD Who Con 2023

Transcript:

What we’re talking about today is the real history behind the history behind Doctor Who. We know from the beginning the show was meant to teach history. It was a children’s program and I think that’s a really lovely idea and so they began with two teachers as companions. That was so intentional and it worked. It was a great way to warm people up and you had to have people who knew something about where they were going. Who had something to say and of course we had a student. You have to have someone you can talk to right? So it was a really lovely blend of characters.The very — one of the earliest ones they did went into the world of the Romans. Everyone’s always fascinated by the Romans and I think what’s really interesting is, sadly, just a little bit later, Highlanders was the last historical one they produced in that early period. They decided it wasn’t what the audience wanted. What did the audience want? Audience:Gimmicks and Robots? Duh, Daleks, right? The Daleks showed up and that was it they were like oh no no this is what the audience is coming for. Forget that history. Forget that study. Don’t learn anything.It’s okay. Also we know that once we get to John Pertwee and he’s trapped on Earth he can’t travel. So there’s no way he’s going to go into the past. So we lose a chunk of time where there was this moment to do something about history and then new Who showed up and we gained it back.
What we’re talking about today is the real history behind the history behind Doctor Who. We know from the beginning the show was meant to teach history. It was a children’s program and I think that’s a really lovely idea and so they began with two teachers as companions. That was so intentional and it worked. It was a great way to warm people up and you had to have people who knew something about where they were going. Who had something to say and of course we had a student. You have to have someone you can talk to right? So it was a really lovely blend of characters.The very — one of the earliest ones they did went into the world of the Romans. Everyone’s always fascinated by the Romans and I think what’s really interesting is, sadly, just a little bit later, Highlanders was the last historical one they produced in that early period. They decided it wasn’t what the audience wanted. What did the audience want? Audience:Gimmicks and Robots? Duh, Daleks, right? The Daleks showed up and that was it they were like oh no no this is what the audience is coming for. Forget that history. Forget that study. Don’t learn anything.It’s okay. Also we know that once we get to John Pertwee and he’s trapped on Earth he can’t travel. So there’s no way he’s going to go into the past. So we lose a chunk of time where there was this moment to do something about history and then new Who showed up and we gained it back.

Watch this entire video

 

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01 Introduction from The Real History Behind the Historic Episodes of Doctor Who with Dr. Rosanne Welch – SD Who Con 2023

In this presentation given at the 2023 San Diego WhoCon I talked about what really happened at Pompeii on volcano day; the agricultural knowledge of the Aztecs; when Robin Hood began appearing in literature, and the bravery of Noor Inayat Khan and Rosa Parks.

01 Introduction from The Real History Behind the Historic Episodes of Doctor Who with Dr. Rosanne Welch - SD Who Con 2023

Transcript:

well welcome everybody very nice to see everybody um I’m glad that the title sounded interesting I hope that the entire presentation will prove interesting um I am Rosanne Welch I teach at a couple places actually because that’s how you do it these days uh Steven’s college is actually in Missouri but we run an uh MFA in screenwriting here in Los Angeles well here north of here in Los Angeles um and so that’s my specialty I was a television writer for about 20 years and then I got into Academia so I studied history because I wasn’t sure I wanted to study writing so I ended up doing a lot of history stuff which was fascinating um and so today we’re going to look at this show that we all love which started out to teach history and how much of it you know is real and how much is fake um and these are kind of the breath of the place that I want to cover um I come from as I said TV writing so I was on all these shows in the past and even on a show like Touch by an Angel we would deal with history because angels of course last forever it was a traveling Angels show where the Angels happen to be Angels but right stylistically The Fugitive is a traveling Angel show MacGyver is a traveling Angel show Doctor Who is a traveling Angel show someone who just goes from place to place and helps other people out and I think that’s really really cool um and then like I said I got a PhD at Claremont University also in slightly above us a couple hours and that’s where I focused on history for a while before I went back into working and writing so that’s where I’m sort of interested in both of these areas and I think we see that show up in Doctor Who um I’m also on the editorial board for these various journals so very interested in how writing is presented to people and how stories are told um I was extremely lucky uh the the magazine of The Writers Guild written by magazine uh I was on the board for that like I said and the editor knew that I was a huge Doctor Who fan so in that period when Russell came to town and did that fourth season of Torchwood here in town um he called me the editor called me and said we’re going to interview him would you like to be the one to talk to him to which I said uh yeah can I do that right away and it was great because as most of these things go the pr person set me up in a room with Russell and it was this Glass Room in the middle of this fancy place in in in Santa Monica and uh the guy said well you have 20 minutes and I was like I can do this in 20 minutes right I’m happy to be here and 20 minutes passed and you saw the pr guy open the door and poke in and Russell was like I’m not done yet and you kicked the pr guy because I knew what I was talking about and I was asking him these really interesting questions and he was having such a great time we ended up talking for an hour and you just saw the man walk around looking but he didn’t want to poke his head in again and get yelled at so it was a marvelous and fun time and this um interview is online uh on this particular website um which is on the writer Guild website and I’ve I’ve also written a bunch of books not all about Doctor Who these three happen to be about Doctor Who and just got me very interested in analyzing the show and why has it been so popular for so long we know it’s provided us a really interesting character who obviously there are many versions of and we’re all very happy to see all those different versions but why else right why else does it stick with us the latest book is the one that’s right up here and it’s about Jodi’s era hello um because that was of course a very iconic moment in all Television right

Watch this entire video

 

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Poems, Plays, Pulitzers: Screenwriter Zoe Akins Did it All – Dr. Rosanne Welch, Script Magazine, October 2023

Poems, Plays, Pulitzers: Screenwriter Zoe Akins Did it All – Dr. Rosanne Welch, Script Magazine, October 2023

Though she never wrote a horror film, to celebrate Halloween this month’s focus is screenwriter, poet, and Pulitzer Prize-winning author, Zoe Akins, born on October 30, 1886. In 1935 Akins would become the third woman to win the Pulitzer Prize for Drama, the highest honor for a Broadway play in the United States, after Zona Gale (1921) and Susan Glaspell (1931). Akins’ win came from her dramatization of Edith Wharton’s The Old Maid. Four years later the play was adapted by Casey Robinson into a film starring Bette Davis, even though Akins had begun adapting plays and turning out her own screenplays in the early 1930s. Throughout her career, she collaborated with some of the most important women both behind and in front of the cameras which has kept her work in the public eye.

Read Poems, Plays, Pulitzers: Screenwriter Zoe Akins Did it All 


Read about more women from early Hollywood

 

Applications Now Open – Stephens College MFA in TV and Screenwriting for Fall 2024

We’re excited to have opened the window for applications to our Stephens College MFA in TV and Screenwriting’s Fall 2024 cohort.

While we have rolling admissions until all seats in the new cohort are filled. If potential MFA candidates submit materials by March 30th and suit the criteria they will be in contention for our Jan Marino Scholarship (for a woman writer 45 or older). 

Check out our new video with interviews with our most recent grads:

Inquire for more information on the program
or
Apply Now

Being a low residency program means you travel to Hollywood for 10 days at the beginning of each semester (once in August/once in January) for a workshop experience worth 3 units. We hold workshops at the historic Jim Henson Studios (originally the Charlie Chaplin Studios) in Hollywood, California.

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Each semester students will take 3 courses after the workshop. They have one mentor for a television script and one mentor for a screenplay. The television mentors change each semester because in Fall semester you write a spec script/in Spring a pilot; the screenplay mentor is onboard for the whole year, as the Fall semester is all about developing an outline and writing Act One of the screenplay, and in the spring semester you complete and revise the script. Our instructors are all chosen because they are working writers and members of the Writers Guild of America (WGA).

In year two, there’s a second screenplay written (with a different mentor) and a thesis project, which can be anything from a web series to a limited series pilot and bible to a group of short films to an actual written thesis.

Our History of Screenwriting Courses are taught with a female gaze. Taught by our Executive Director so she can stay in touch with MFA candidates across their 2 years in the program. In the course, students read texts and view films each week that feature female-focused stories, and then post responses to the material. At the end of each semester, students turn in a profile of a screenwriter.

In 2017, 22 of these profiles written by MFA students were compiled into the book WHEN WOMEN WROTE HOLLYWOOD, published by McFarland Press.

If you are a writer looking to move your material to the next level so it will secure you a spot in the industry – or a college educator who wants a graduate degree to move up in the academic world – then our program is perfect for you. 

Join us in Fall 2024 in Hollywood!

Together in Chapel

 

The Real History Behind the Historic Episodes of Doctor Who with Dr. Rosanne Welch – SD Who Con 2023 (Complete)

In this presentation given at the 2023 San Diego WhoCon I talked about what really happened at Pompeii on volcano day; the agricultural knowledge of the Aztecs; when Robin Hood began appearing in literature, and the bravery of Noor Inayat Khan and Rosa Parks.

The Real History Behind the Historic Episodes of Doctor Who with Dr. Rosanne Welch - SD Who Con 2023

 

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PRESS: Screenwriters and academics converge on Stephens College for international conference, Columbia Tribune, Columbia, Missouri

While it was a pleasure to host the Screenwriting Research Network’s 2023 conference last week. I love reconnecting with all the folks we see annually in such wonderful places in the world (from Leeds to London to Dunedin to Milan). But the other great thing about this event was the chance to share the Stephens College campus in Columbia, Missouri with everyone. This article in the Columbia Tribune covered the conference’s opening night reception and interviewed some of our international guests so it gives you a lovely feel of who was there and why we gather annually:

PRESS: Screenwriters and academics converge on Stephens College for international conference, Columbia Tribune, Columbia, Missouri

Srn 2023 poster female gazeScreenwriters and academics converge on Stephens College for international conference

Screenwriters and screenwriting academics are gathering at Stephens College through Saturday for the Screenwriting Research Network Conference with the theme Gender and the Female Gaze.

A reception for conference participants was Wednesday night in the penthouse of the college library.

Participants are from at least 15 countries, said Roseanne Welch, executive director the Stephens’ Master of Fine Arts in TV and Screenwriting. Stephens College is a private women’s college in Columbia.

The female gaze refers to seeing life through women’s eyes, Welch said.

“We’re seeing that happen in all kinds of recent films, not just ‘Barbie'” Welch said.

Women’s stories were more complicated in the films of the 1930s and 1940s, she said.

“There were these complete stories with women anti-heroes,” Welch said.

Read the entire article – Screenwriters and academics converge on Stephens College for international conference