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I can’t be sure where Telus got the name for STORYHIVE, the Kickstarter-inspired online platform where local content creators can pitch their ideas for a chance at grant funding from TELUS. But I’m guessing it has something to do with how a creative person’s brain is often like a beehive: busy.

This week, Telus launched their second annual search for those creative minds whose brains just want to create and won’t rest until their busy brains are busy making awesome movies for all to see and enjoy!

If you’re not familiar, Telus’ STORYHIVE is a unique opportunity for creators of all skill and experience levels, from hobbyists to film school trained production talent and everyone in between.

Stage 1:
• The top 30 finalists will be selected in BC and Alberta (15 in each province) and will be awarded 15 x $10,000 grants per province to develop a web series pilot (3-8 minutes) and receive distribution through TELUS Optik TV on demand.

Stage 2:
• The top 30 finalists will then compete with their finished pilot for the chance to win a $50,000 grant to create their full series ( 1 award per province) through TELUS Optik TV on demand.

But it doesn’t stop there, stage 2 winners will also receive mentorship and training from industry pros, helping them to move from emerging artist to well-known talent.

Last year, twenty emerging artists from Vancouver, Edmonton and Calgary were all chosen by a social vote to receive a $10,000 grant from TELUS to bring their short films to life and receive distribution on Optik TV On Demand and online.

If you’re thinking of applying for this year’s STORYHIVE, the finished products from Season 1 are available to watch anytime online.  Why not check out all the movies from last year’s competition, it can only help you as your prep to kick-butt this time around!

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Here’s how to get your entry noticed:


You might not know this, but three years, I was a producer at Breakfast Television. In that time, I saw every kind of pitch possible. From the easy and brilliant to the disastrously embarrassing, and I’m here to tell you, it’ll often surprise you who has the bad pitches.  I really love this STORYHIVE initiative, because it gives young Albertans the opportunity to produce something tangible. We all have fun and crazy ideas, but rarely do we have the money to fund them. This is your chance. So, as someone who’s written more than 4,300 blog post and was a TV producer, I’d like to offer up some tips.

Just do it. Okay, I know Nike technically owns that, but it’s true. So many people will hear about STORYHIVE, but won’t do a single thing about it. They come up with ideas, they’ll chat with their friends, but when it comes time to apply, nothing will happen. Why wait?  There aren’t very many chances like this one!

Don’t decide if you’re good enough. I hear it all the time, “I want that job, but I’m not qualified.”  “I would love to be on that show, but they’ll never pick me.”  “I wish I had money to fund my short film, but I’ll never get it.”  Well, here’s the thing. All the people that got that job, reality show or funding did the same thing: They actually applied. I never understand why someone wouldn’t apply for something, even if they don’t meet all the qualifications.  Who cares?  If you don’t meet the qualifications, then let them tell you that. If you’re idea still needs work, let them tell you that.  Why dismiss yourself before you’ve even applied.

Trust your ideas with your friends and family. Since STORYHIVE is inspired by the world’s biggest crowdfunding site, why not crowdsource your idea before you even apply?  I definitely agree with the thought that there is no such thing as a bad idea, but that doesn’t mean that idea can’t be finessed and developed.  Before you apply to STORYHIVE, share your ideas with a few members of your family and friends, but be prepared to listen to them as they share their thoughts. It can be tough to hear criticism, even if it’s constructive, but if you want to make it far in this competition, why not take advice from the people in your life that you trust the most?

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Mike Morrison


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