Susan Bower has long been passionate about the connection between storytelling and education. Several papers have been written on this subject but little work in the field has been studied . Last year Susan Bower teamed up with Cynthia Cowling, Senior Lecturer at Monash University Melbourne Australia, to develop a teaching model for Cowling’s students studying Mammography. The aim was to engage the students emotionally and intellectually by matching specific on line lectures with vision of personal stories relating to breast cancer, including following a woman’s experience of having her first mammogram. Students reported an increase in engagement with the lectures, and the examination results recorded a 100% pass rate. Cowling and Bower will present (the) “Use of digital storytelling to teach evidence based breast imaging to radiography students: translating reality into best practice: a case study” at the 8th International Conference of Evidenced Based Health Care (EBCH) Teachers and Developers later this year (2017) in Sicily.
Susan Bower will be facilitating a ten week Online writing course beginning October 24. Writing For Television Part 2. Check out the information on the AFTRS Website. WFT is as much Craft as Talent. Talent is innate. Craft can be taught.
Susan Bower completed her stint as Script Producer on the melodrama A Place To Call Home Series 3. APTCH S3 is produced by Network Seven for Foxtel. Bower’s writing team consisted of David Hannam, Giula Sandler, Katherine Thomson, Deborah Parsons, Kim Wilson, Sarah Lambert and John Ridley. http://www.mediaweek.com.au/a-place-to-call-home-stvs-third-most-watched-drama/
“Leadership and Learning are indispensable to each other”. President John F Kennedy.
As I revisit a teaching role with the Australian Film, Television and Radio School I consider I may be learning more than I lead.
I have a long relationship with the AFTRS believing that as leaders it is a privilege maybe even a duty to give something back, pass on the experience and expertise gained over the years and hopefully encourage budding creatives in their chosen field. So after a long absence I have returned. The course I’m running was devised by Vikki Madden and developed by Alexa Wyatt . Their notes and weekly assignment tasks and topics have at times challenged me. Too often as creatives we dismiss the dissection of our art, we take umbrage at the “how to” books and seminars, passing it off as teaching us how to suck eggs. And yet it is acknowledged that innate talent is not always successful with out craft. And craft can be taught. I find teaching craft exciting. In order to answer the students’ questions and give objective feedback to their assignments I must do the exercises myself. Processes I do daily, almost on automatic pilot I now had to break down, label and to justify the elements of the various drama series set as viewing assignments. So how did these processes become almost automatic? I was taught. My fellow creatives may not have used words like ethos when developing the dramatic world of the project or described a character as a Vulnerable Vixen or even as the protagonist or antagonist but at every story table, script meeting, rehearsal and in every edit suite the craft of story telling is learned.
In my career as a Showrunner, I am a leader. I guide people through the creative process from the inception of an idea to the visual representation on the screen, and I often have to make unpopular decisions. I base the guidance and decision making on the learning I have accumulated over the years.
Therefore I agree with the words of President Kennedy, leadership and learning are indispensable.
International interest remains strong in Susan Bower’s projects. A one off mini series Thicker Than Water, a rom-com based on the Australian tour by the Beatles; Red Earth, a murder mystery created by Bower and a feature film adapted from the novel Coronation Talkies by Susan Kurosawa. Bower continues to pitch the other projects on the company’s slate; DomDaniel, a surreal drama series for tweens and Fallen Angels a mini series based on the 1985 Victorian Nurses Strike.
Developing new projects is ongoing. Let Go (working title), a sitcom about redundancy and Mates(working title), a buddy story between an old man and a troubled teen.
Susan Bower continues to mentor several rising creative writers and producers through the process of story and script development. She is currently facilitating a writing course for the Australian Film, Television and Radio School.
Bower Bird Productions Consulting Services is including explanation and instruction in the art of Corporate Story Telling. This service is in addition to that of Story and Script Development and Assessment.
Bower Bird Productions is on the web! Showcasing all of our future Productions as well as previous Productions founder Susan Bower has worked on and providing detailed information about Susan. Bower Bird Productions’ website will be regularly updated with all company happenings and useful information about the Australian Film, Television and Theatre industries.