My Adventure in Hollywood: A Writer’s Quest

I watched the 2016 Oscars ceremony from a hotel room in the mid-west, halfway through the cross-country trip from Pennsylvania to California. I was on an adventure – taking a leap of faith and pursuing a career as a TV writer.

As my father/frequent driver/guru slept during the awards I sat on the edge of my temporary bed, my eyes glued to the screen and my fingers dancing on social media apps.  I cheered, booed, and celebrated wins (quietly as not to wake my elder) and fell asleep as the credits rolled. My heart was full of joy, my spirit filled with purpose, and my mind brimmed with inspiration.

The joy, purpose, and inspiration weren’t enough to turn the dream into a goal. Ten weeks into my CA adventure I made the life-changing decision to return to the east coast.

Lessons Learned

I failed – that’s the message that I’ve told myself during the eight months since my return to PA. Though friends and family use words like brave and inspirational, I thank them but disagree. The memories of my time in Hollywood fill my soul with pride yet also cut my self-confidence in half.


View of the Pacific Ocean


I miss the artistic energy, the scenic views of the Pacific coast, and even the healthier lifestyle. I miss taking walks with my sister and her family, playing board games with my nephews, and attending baseball practices/games.

I miss attending events like the LA Times Festival of Books and WonderCon – listening to panels varying in topic from Young Adult Fantasy and TV marketing.

I miss the beautiful weather, navigating LA traffic with ease, walking around Hollywood & Highland, waiting along the sidelines during red carpet premieres – with pen and paper to remember it all.

What don’t I miss? The fear of failure success, applying to jobs that would require dedication and commitment for the long-term goal, and the dreaded self trio: doubt, confidence, and esteem.

I had to ask myself if I wanted the ultimate goal of TV writer badly enough to work my way there over the course of five to ten years. Could I settle down in Los Angeles – away from most of my family and friends? What if I achieved career satisfaction or even financial success? Would all my faults and flaws be food for fodder? Could I handle achieving my personal and professional goals only to have them challenged, threatened, or tainted? Wouldn’t that destroy me more – to reach that level of fulfillment and then lose it?

So I didn’t try, didn’t give it my all. I wasn’t brave, inspirational, or determined. I focused on spending time with the CA family and taking in the sights of Hollywood as though an outsider though I yearned to be an insider.

My sister and brother-in-law offered wise counsel, tons of laughs, and pragmatic suggestions – gently prodding me to determine my  ultimate goals. “I don’t know,” I’d reply. “Why don’t I know?”

I reached a point where all the inactions and non job searching forced me to make a decision regarding the next step in my life’s journey. Do I stay and put all my energy into achieving my entertainment dreams or go back east and pursue publication as a YA (Young Adult) author? I chose the latter, convincing myself that I wasn’t running away so much as being realistic.

Eastward Bound

My father accompanied me on the drive back east, rain greeting us each of the four days of travel. I stared out of the window, saddened and disappointed in myself but longing for home so that I could pretend I was brave and independent when the actual lesson from the CA adventure revealed the stark reality: I’d failed. I’d given up.  I allowed fear to color my decisions.

Three weeks after settling back at “home”, my older sister (one in PA) suddenly passed away. As I dealt with the stages of loss, I also found some comfort in knowing that I was there in her final twelve hours. I told myself that I must have sensed a need to be in Pennsylvania and that that’s what prompted the end to the CA adventure.

In the many months since my “failed” adventure, sister’s death and worrying about the election outcome, I spun into a downward spiral – sucked in by irrational fear and an overwhelming sense of dread. Art had consistently been my source of healing in years past, yet now I found little fulfillment from writing. Blogging about entertainment seemed meaningless and tweeting to my favorite actors or TV writers/execs felt like a waste of time and energy. “What did it matter?” I asked. “I’d decided, after all, that a career in TV wasn’t for me so why give it so much attention now?”

I became immersed in fear and self-depreciation until the morning of November 9th. I realized that I could not sit idly by and let fear and dread consume me. I must stand up and keep moving forward. Life is a journey-  my Hollywood adventure but one path along the way. I am currently writing a children’s book and reminding fear that I am strong.

What about the TV writer dream? I feel immense regret over my inactions especially since talking about film, TV, and/or theatre still brightens my eyes and fills my soul with joy. I remain unsure of my personal and professional goals but I’m motivated to search them out.

This February 26th, I’ll celebrate the best of 2016 film from a comfy couch and in the company of friends and family. Will I blog about it afterwards? Perhaps…but I’ll enjoy the show nonetheless.


**No endorsement from any of the above organizations/events implied.**

‘Supergirl’ Inspires a New Generation at PaleyFest LA

They walked down the aisle, their red capes leaving a trail of smiles behind them.


My level of excitement for film and television blossomed throughout my childhood and remains intact as I approach the age of forty. However, the stark reality of a world so cocooned in fear and misery can make even this entertainment girl a little disillusioned. My view can sometimes cloud with a mist of cynicism and entitlement but every now and then, the briefest of moments can dissipate the mist and let a little bit of wonder shine in.


Supergirl‘ panel at the 2016 PaleyFest LA event

Taking time out of their Sunday night schedule, cast members Melissa Benoist (Kara/Supergirl), Calista Flockhart (Cat), Chyler Leigh (Alex), Mehcad Brooks (James), David Harewood (Hank/J’onn), and Jeremy Jordan (Winn) along with Executive Producers Greg Berlanti and Ali Adler joined us for an evening of laughter, discussion, and shared affection for this beloved series. Each of the panelists were absolutely delightful and the camaraderie between them evident – from Jeremy and Mehcad “suggesting” an interesting twist to the James/Kara/Winn love triangle to the heartfelt exchange between the Danvers sisters’ portrayers when asked about their off-screen relationship. I think Calista summed it up perfectly when she declared that “This is one of the most amazing, supportive casts…”.


L-R: Moderator – Leanne Aguilera, Berlanti, Adler, Benoist, Flockhart, Leigh, Brooks, Harewood, and Jordan

Even before the lights dimmed and the panelists took their seats onstage, inspiration hit me like a ray of sunlight. I knew that I would write about the event after the fact, but was unsure how to present it, until I saw all the young girls in their Supergirl costumes. “This is what matters,” I thought as I stood alongside fellow fans along the Dolby Theatre’s balcony, straining to get a peek of the press line. A young girl with long blond hair walked up next to me and peered over the balcony. I grinned and said, “Are you excited?” The shy smile and wide eyes answered my question, warming my heart and sending my spirit soaring.


Before I knew it, my memory flooded back to myself at a young age. My long blonde hair fell over my Cinderella shirt as I’d watched the Main Street parade, waiting with growing anticipation for the arrival of my favorite animated princess. I waved emphatically and to my utter shock she pointed to me and said, “You look like me.” Thirty-some odd years later, at the TV version of a stage door experience, a young girl waiting to see her favorite character wiped that cloud of disillusionment right away.


The inspiration continued throughout the event as the actors talked about the positive influence of a show like Supergirl for the younger generation. Chyler spoke about how meaningful it is for her being a part of this show, given she has two young daughters, and the look of awe and excitement on the faces of children who visit the set and see Melissa in costume.


The moment that touched me most was when Mehcad Brooks took off his mic, jumped down to the front row, and placed a young fan on stage so we could all see the adorable Supergirl costume she had on. She had just asked Melissa if she could be her friend, to which Melissa immediately replied, “Yes, of course!” And when they realized that the rest of us couldn’t see the costume, Mehcad flew in to save the day. What a moment that must have been for that precious child whose smile hadn’t faded by the time we all left the theater an hour later.


It’s moments like those that reaffirm my support for the show and the delightful cast. As Melissa said, “I’ve been so privileged to get to know all these little kids who’ve been inspired by the show.” And that, ladies and gentlemen, is what makes Melissa (and her on-screen counterpart) inspiring to those young of age and young at heart.

*DISCLAIMER: No endorsement by or affiliation with anyone associated with Supergirl, DC Comics, Warner Brothers, CBS or their subsidiaries is implied.*

An Entertainment-Filled Weekend

A recent trip from the east to west coast inspired me on both a personal and professional level.  As such, I wrote about my experiences on my Author website and have included the links below for your reading enjoyment!


Story Expo


Sunday SoulJourn: Entertainment Path

Sunday SoulJourn Hollywood

Reasons You Should Hire Me for Your TV Drama Series

Working as a writer on a dramatic series was a dream that belonged to a teenage girl who hoped and wished. I now know without hesitation that the dream is not only possible but probable. It’ll take hard work – work that I’m ready, willing, and able to manage…I would love to gain insight from those currently in the Dramatic Writing profession. Understanding the paths they took may help guide me along my own.  – Day 31 of the Artistic Spirit Pledge: DRAMATIC WRITING

I write characters better than I sketch them!
I write characters better than I sketch them!
  1. DEDICATION: It takes a lot of hard work, time, energy, and talented artists (in front of and behind the camera) to bring a TV series to the screen each week. You only need read the end credits to see how many people are working together, united for a common goal. My passion and respect for the TV drama industry makes me a valuable asset to the team, whether you hire me to edit a script for consistency, answer telephones, or run errands for a producer.  I seek to develop my craft and learn from those whose expertise shines in the work they create.
  2. COMPLEX CHARACTERS: The characters I create and those I root for on a dramatic series must have inner turmoil on some level. I strive to develop situations where the labels of “protagonist” and “antagonist” no longer apply. It is through conflict exploration both internal and external that the characters develop, thus adding depth and complexity to the entire canvas.
  3. DIALOGUE: When I start a new story, it’s the dialogue that moves it forward. I can write idea after idea about what’s going to happen, but once the characters start conversing, the story takes on a life all its own. I find it not only exciting but creatively stimulating to create dialogue for each character that gives them a unique voice.
  4. TARGET MARKET:  I’ve spent most of my adult life utilizing my skill sets in programs, workshops, or completed writings that target teenagers and young adults.  With two decades of volunteer involvement in youth-oriented programs, I have a keen insight into their struggles, hopes, and goals. This understanding led me to write an 80,000 word Young Adult fantasy novel, which follows a young woman on her journey of individuality through family responsibility.
  5. GENEALOGY: I hated history, truly I did. However, when I realized that the ones who came before me experienced the same range of emotions (though the specifics differed) as I do, I saw them with renewed focus. We aren’t simply names and faces – we each have a story to tell.  My ancestors are complex characters in their own life story, and through genealogy research, I help create the first draft.
  6. APPRECIATION: The profound respect, admiration, and appreciation I have for the TV drama industry continues to inspire me on a daily basis. I love watching behind-the-scenes videos, reading interviews from Executive Producers and Show Runners, and discussing the episodes with viewers who share in my excitement. I hold this industry in high regard while also being able to look at it objectively.

I look forward to discussing my qualifications with you in greater detail. Please email me directly at

Best wishes,
Kelly Deeny