Microsoft Adds SoCreate’s Open Source Projects to Service Fabric Best Practices

Microsoft Adds SoCreate’s Open Source Projects to Service Fabric Best Practices
We may be considered a small software company, but our team is doing BIG things in the industry. Microsoft just added two of SoCreate’s open source projects to its Service Fabric guide for best practices.   Mark Fussell, Group Program Manager for Microsoft Azure, recently invited SoCreate’s Chief Engineer Jami Lurock to give Microsoft staff a demo on SoCreate Service Fabric Distributed Cache and SoCreate Service Fabric Pub/Sub over a web conference. SoCreate built these open source projects a… Read this article »
Courtney Meznarich

Writers Vallelonga & D'Aquila: Chip Away at Your Script Until It Looks Like 2 Oscars

Writers Vallelonga & D'Aquila: Chip Away at Your Script Until It Looks Like 2 Oscars
It’s hard to give titles to Nick Vallonga and Kenny D’Aquila. For our purposes here, we’ll call them screenwriters, but this pair is multi-talented. You can barely stand next to them and NOT be inspired to do something creative. You probably know Vallelonga from his two-time Oscar win at the 2019 Academy Awards (no big deal!), both for Best Original Screenplay and Best Picture for “Green Book.” The film is based on the true story of Vallelonga’s father Tony Lip, who toured the south with fame… Read this article »
Courtney Meznarich

Bright and Early: Darryl Yeo Joins SoCreate's Software Engineering Team

Bright and Early: Darryl Yeo Joins SoCreate's Software Engineering Team
To say Darryl Yeo is a high-achiever is an understatement. As a Cal Poly University freshman, Darryl is the youngest member of our software engineering team. However, what our newest intern lacks in years on earth, he makes up for through his dedicated, industrious approach to learn-by-doing.   “I was hooked into computer programming when I was introduced to Scratch in 5th grade,” Darryl said. Scratch, a project of the MIT Media Lab, allows users to program their own interactive stories, game… Read this article »
Courtney Meznarich

“Don’t be precious,” and More Advice from Screenwriter Adam G. Simon

“Don’t be precious,” and More Advice from Screenwriter Adam G. Simon
From Hollywood to Pakistan, screenwriters from around the globe tuned in to our Instagram Story to ask screenwriter Adam G. Simon questions about how to get their screenwriting careers off the ground.   “I love contributing because no one really helped me,” he told the writing community. “I want more people to succeed. I want more people in. I want more people creating ideas. Before I broke in, I had negative 150 dollars in my bank account and a bag of scripts. It put me in a position where I h… Read this article »
Courtney Meznarich

The Color System: SoCreate Sets Standards with CSS Custom Properties

The Color System: SoCreate Sets Standards with CSS Custom Properties
Our most recent Lunch Meet – a SoCreate team-led learning series – may have been the most colorful yet! UX Developer Lauren Spence took the floor to teach the team about cutting edge practices being used on the UX side of SoCreate projects. While the rest of us satisfied our appetites with catered lunch, Lauren satisfied our visual senses with her presentation on the SoCreate Color System.   The Color System is an innovative approach that controls and themes the colors in all of the apps we b… Read this article »
Courtney Meznarich

How Much Money Does a Screenwriter Make? We Asked 5 Professional Writers

How Much Money Does a Screenwriter Make? We Asked 5 Professional Writers
For most, writing is less of a job and more of a passion. But wouldn’t it be ideal if we could all make a living in a field that we are passionate about? It’s not impossible to get paid to do what you love, if you’re willing to accept the reality: there’s not much stability for writers who choose this path. We asked five expert writers how much money the average writer can expect to earn. The answer? Well, it’s as diverse as the backgrounds of our experts. Per the Writers Guild of America Wes… Read this article »
Courtney Meznarich

Writer Jonathan Maberry Talks Finding Representation

Writer Jonathan Maberry Talks Finding Representation
As a New York Times best-selling author and five-time Bram Stoker Award winner, Jonathan Maberry is an encyclopedia of knowledge when it comes to the storytelling business. He’s written comic books, magazine articles, plays, anthologies, novels and more. And while he wouldn’t call himself a screenwriter, this writer does have onscreen projects in the works. V-Wars, based on Jonathan’s best-selling franchise by the same name, is headed for Netflix this year. And Alcon Entertainment just bought th… Read this article »
Courtney Meznarich

Say What?! Screenwriting Terms and Meanings

Say What?! Screenwriting Terms and Meanings
Expert screenwriters say one of the best ways to learn to write a screenplay is to read screenplays that have been produced. You may come across some unfamiliar terms while doing this, especially if you’re new to the craft. We’ve put together a quick read for you to refer to when you come across a word or acronym you don’t understand. These are also good to know when you dive into your screenplay masterpiece, of course! ActionShowing through action is generally better than telling through dia… Read this article »
Courtney Meznarich

$100k Investment Shows Support for Startups in SLO

$100k Investment Shows Support for Startups in SLO
“Why is SoCreate in SLO?” “There’s not much tech in that area.” “Wouldn’t it be easier if you were located in the Bay? Or LA?” “Where is the heck San Luis Obispo?” “S-L-O. Like slow, like a snail?” And the questions go on and on. Between media interviews, out-of-area conferences, and friends and family, I’ve been asked any number of questions about my experience working for a screenwriting software startup in little ol’ San Luis Obispo. But after attending the Central California Angel Con… Read this article »
Courtney Meznarich

4 Common Dialogue Problems in a Script

4 Common Dialogue Problems in a Script
Screenplays are meant to be taut, precise, almost effortless reads. But there are common dialogue problems that muddy a screenplay’s purity, leaving your reader trudging through page after page of gobbledygook. Luckily these issues are easy to spot during a rewrite. Take a read through four common dialogue problems that you can probably find (and fix) right now. 1. Fluffy Dialogue We recently wrapped the SoCreate “Get Writing” One-Page Screenplay Competition, and the results are fascinating. W… Read this article »
Courtney Meznarich

Hardware, Software, Wetware: SoCreate Tackles the Topic of BCI

Hardware, Software, Wetware: SoCreate Tackles the Topic of BCI
It’s 2019, and science fiction is no longer. We’re living in an age of science reality! Our March Lunch Meet (a monthly team-led learning series) tackled the topic of brain computer interfaces (BCI), which was just what our movie-minded team was craving. UX development intern Madalyn Pape delivered the impressive presentation, as the topic is a personal passion. Avatar, The Matrix, Star Trek and Marvel’s X-Men … now these are films about mind control that we can understand! But connecting our… Read this article »
Courtney Meznarich

How to Write Foreign Language in a Traditional Screenplay

How to Write Foreign Language in a Traditional Screenplay
Hollywood, Bollywood, Nollywood … in the 21st century, movies are made everywhere. And while the film industry expands, so does our desire to hear from more diverse voices, including languages we may not understand. But with strict screenplay formatting, how do you utilize foreign language to enhance the authenticity of your story, and at the same time make it legible and not confusing? Never fear, there are a few simple ways to add foreign language dialogue to your screenplay, no translations n… Read this article »
Courtney Meznarich

How a Homeless PA Inspired Filmmaker Noel Braham to Write Screenplays That Matter

How a Homeless PA Inspired Filmmaker Noel Braham to Write Screenplays That Matter
Filmmaker Noel Braham was wrapping up a night of production on his second short, The Millennial, when he was confronted with a story that gripped him at the heart. The inspiration was sitting right there. “I had a production assistant helping me out pro-bono … working tirelessly, without complaining. The guy was amazing to work with.” Braham offered to drive the PA home, and at first, the PA declined. “He said just drop me off at the train station, and I said no, I’m going to give you a ride ba… Read this article »
Courtney Meznarich

SoCreate Supports Local Tech: Deep Reinforcement Learning Workshop

SoCreate Supports Local Tech: Deep Reinforcement Learning Workshop
SoCreate makes a tradition out of supporting tech in San Luis Obispo. One reason is that we’re lifelong learners, and there is so much to learn from each other, and we also want to see the tech industry grow in SLO because that only helps us develop a more talented team! So, when two experts in their field stepped up to teach a PyData SLO workshop on deep reinforcement learning, we stepped up to provide the pizza! We also hosted this March Meetup here at our SoCreate offices. SoCreate Software… Read this article »
Courtney Meznarich

SoCreate Announces Winners of the First-Ever “Get Writing” Screenwriting Competition

SoCreate Announces Winners of the First-Ever “Get Writing” Screenwriting Competition
So, we have our winners! And you writers did not make this an easy choice. Your screenplays were so well done, hilarious, and most importantly, you crammed all that good stuff into a single page. Incredible!  More than 500 people entered their one-page comedy screenplays about the life of a writer in our first ever SoCreate “Get Writing” Screenwriting Competition. We read scripts from India, Tanzania , Australia, Ireland, United Kingdom, Greece, Tunisia, Portugal, Netherlands, Hong Kong, Egypt,… Read this article »
Courtney Meznarich

SoCreate Launches 2 New Open Source Projects - ‘Service Fabric’ Reliable Services

SoCreate Launches 2 New Open Source Projects - ‘Service Fabric’ Reliable Services
When it came time to build out SoCreate’s screenwriting platform infrastructure, we evaluated several options for managing our application cache and data protection. Our SoCreate engineers are big fans of Microsoft Service Fabric, a distributed systems platform that makes it easy to package, launch, and manage scalable microservices and containers. Service Fabric also addresses challenges related to developing and managing cloud native applications.   So, rather than using Redis or SQL Server a… Read this article »
Courtney Meznarich

Duncan Gichimu Joins a Team of Lifelong Learners at SoCreate

Duncan Gichimu Joins a Team of Lifelong Learners at SoCreate
SoCreate continues to grow our team of software engineering talent with the recent addition of Duncan Gichimu. Duncan was a standout graduate of the Fullstack Academy coding boot camp, where he honed skills he’s been building since high school. And SoCreate couldn’t help but take notice! The Fullstack program is competitive and intense, but Duncan is no stranger to these two adjectives. He’s been coding since he was a teenager and won 3 national championships with his BDPA (Black Data Process… Read this article »
Courtney Meznarich

Acts, Scenes, and Sequences - How Long Should Each Be in a Traditional Screenplay?

Acts, Scenes, and Sequences - How Long Should Each Be in a Traditional Screenplay?
If I had to name my favorite adage, it’s that rules are for breaking (most of them - speed limits are exempt!), but you must know the rules before you can break them. So, keep that in mind as you read through what I’d call “guidelines” to the timing of acts, scenes, and sequences in a screenplay. There’s a good reason for these guidelines, though (just like speed limits 😊) so don’t stray too far off the mark or you might pay for it later. Let’s start from the top. A 90-110-page screenplay is s… Read this article »
Courtney Meznarich

Lunch Meet: Jami Lurock's Journey to Home Automation

Lunch Meet: Jami Lurock's Journey to Home Automation
When you combine an engineer and his home security system, the result is something far more advanced than your typical alarm. Ever wish you could just tell your garage door to open, monitor the salinity of your saltwater pool from afar, or catch your kid or roommate who leaves the window open while the heater is on, all from a mobile device? It can be done, and our chief engineer Jami Lurock set out to prove it! At our second installment of “Lunch Meet,” a monthly team-led learning series on… Read this article »
Courtney Meznarich

Producer David Alpert on How to Take the Weird and Make It Great

Producer David Alpert on How to Take the Weird and Make It Great
Somewhere between selling 6,000 comic books a month as a high school student, and producing the mega-hit The Walking Dead, David Alpert has learned a thing or two about “Taking the Weird and Making it Great.” And he shared those lessons at a tell-all evening of the same title during a recent visit to San Luis Obispo County. The event was the first in a series of Creative Chats at Studios on the Park in Paso Robles. While best known for The Walking Dead franchise, Alpert also found success produ… Read this article »
Courtney Meznarich