"A decade ago, Warren Etheredge and I founded The Film School, a non-profit program focused on the self-esteem necessary to effectively execute creative expression through Storytelling. The overall program has had exceptional success as, 'Life changing'... That alumni assessment of the course, led to The Red Badge Project, designed specifically for transitioning active PTSD vets. Warren's conflict and resolution approach to Storytelling, gives each vet in the program the 'nugget' from which most great Storytelling emerges. Most importantly, Warren's 'nugget' approach is a key element for building a veteran's self-realization and the self-worth needed to effectively move, with a measure of confidence, from the unity of military purpose to the individuality of civilian life."
- Tom Skerritt
Actor, Founder of TheFilmSchool and The Red Badge Project
"Warren Etheredge is an extraordinary interviewer -- one of the best in the country. He's incredibly prepared for each encounter -- and has an uncanny ability to absorb complicated material and distill it for audiences. He also has a terrific sense of humor that makes the interviews feel less like dutiful graduate seminars and more like a late-night talk show. Indeed, I think it's only a matter of time before some media executive wises up and gives Warren his own show."
- Daniel H. Pink, author of DRIVE and A WHOLE NEW MIND
"One engagement or workshop with Warren Etheredge and you will be a fan. For any company or individual who wants to communicate better, tell more engaging stories, or connect better with their audience, Warren is the answer. Warren's style and approach to teaching is fun and hugely effective. He has made a difference in how I write and communicate.”
- John Hughes
CIO of MacDonald-Miller
Author of Haunting the CEO
"I have worked with Warren on and off for over a decade. We first met during a screening of an independent film, and his expertise in storytelling came through during the subsequent Q&A with the filmmaker. I approached Warren afterwards and engaged him 1:1 to work with me on storytelling for film and video games. I also participated in the inaugural session of TheFilmSchool, of which he is one of the founding teachers.
Additionally, Warren and I were business partners in a script development and production company, Lockspring Pictures, for many years.
Warren has the ability to see storytelling from a character and emotional perspective that allows him work beyond traditional narrative structure and formats. With this, he has the ability to work with creators and their vision to help them craft original, fresh, stories. Because his storytelling is focused on character and emotions and not generic "formulas" he has consistently shown the ability to apply that beyond traditional narrative structures and onto new media, technologies, and formats. It also drives within him a near insatiable curiosity for exploring how to apply great story telling in new ways.
While Warren and I no longer work together at the moment, his strength as a teacher of storytelling allows me to continue to apply what I've learned over the years from him to everything I do as an executive in a large video game company. I apply my storytelling skills not just to the medium of video game design, but also in how I lead teams, speak with customers and interact with the press. His teachings allow me to take a more customer centric view of the message I am trying to tell, and ensure that I speak to a deeper truth, with personal meaning, in a way that all can hear and understand."
- John Vechey
"I just finished the last leg of my book tour and wanted to take a moment to thank you for the opportunity to appear on your show. Considering the caliber of people who have appeared on your program, and your skill and expertise in so many aspects of the film and entertainment business, I consider it a real honor to have been included as one of your guests. I can’t tell you how privileged I feel, and also how inadequate I feel at being one of your interviewees.
"I want to let you know that you were able to help me feel the most comfortable and natural show of any show I have participated in [...] and how much I appreciate your own zeal in also not being unable to turn your back on a subject that is so uncomfortable. I appreciate you having me, a first time author and a nobody in the business on your show. I am positive it will help in ways we will probably never fully know or appreciate and I am grateful to you for taking up the cause."
- Sam Brower
Author, Prophet's Prey
"I have been working with Warren since 2006. There was a story that I was terrified to write. I could tell parts of what I am, but not all of my life experiences, because I felt too vulnerable to share some ways I might be found unacceptable to conventional society. I had written for literary magazines and was in command of my craft. But I had not yet grown the confidence of a writer who could make my own language choices, ones that arose out of a disintegration of beliefs following my husband losing his memories in a TBI.
In the wake of this trauma, Warren helped me discover my voice. He mentored me over the next few years, first in the development of a script, and then he became a trusted reader for my memoir, forthcoming from Tin House Books. It's a radical act to explore an authentic language.The set of skills that come in a creative writing teacher don't necessarily transfer to the kind of mentor who can become a witness to unexplainable life events, and encourage the beauty of honest storytelling, and facilitate an understanding of the conflict at the core of your own persona. Through his skillful techniques, I learned how the act of writing might evolve out of my own sense of myself.
The conventions of historical narrative typically confine the stories women can tell to tropes of masculine action and old models of psychological realism. Warren helped me define and claim my self, and through that acknowledgment, tell my story, a woman's story, one of a body joined with an intellect. Like Tillie Olsen and Lidia Yuknavitch and Alice Munro and other women writers seeking original ways to express their unique and ordinary experiences, I found the courage to take my place as an artist. And without Warren's steadfast support, thoughtful questions and non-judgmental observations, I don't know that I'd be here, sending my work into the world. I might have written; I might not have 'leaned in' as Sheryl Sandberg says. Now I'm taking more risks, publishing more difficult material, teaching students in-person and online, including developing a writing program for women soldiers.
I wish I'd written more about Warren, his good nature, his sense of humor, his integrity, the way he gently urged me to see sides of my character obscured from my view. However, I want you to know how he changed me so thoroughly that it altered not just my writing, but my sense of myself in the world. You should just bring him into your organization, and watch what happens to people."
- Sonya Lea
"Warren – I wanted to thank you again for your remarkable session at Waggener Edstrom. Once again you proved that you can engage and move ANY audience. The feedback was extraordinary, and the session was accessible and dynamic. I loved how you created wonderful entry points to the storytelling topic. I felt your “big ideas” were accessible. People loved how you honed into the power of active listening. Multiple people told me after that they can immediately see how to use these tools. You made the session relevant to their clients and to themselves.
I would like to talk with you more about your theories on how to develop a story within minutes. Your examples were so damn good. I can see any novices being able to use them. Each of the tool sets you shared will now be an asset for the agency. Members of our creative and account teams said in the feedback that they feel even more confident about putting clients and subjects at ease with your techniques. You’ve made it easy for people to tell their stories. Essentially, you have mastered the Art of Storytelling. The fact you can make it practical and usable for anyone is a true gift. I can’t wait to have you come back – over and over and over."
- Eddie Rehfeldt
Executive Creative Director
Waggener Edstrom Communications
"When we forged our partnership with the Red Badge Project (RBP), it was with exactly this idea in mind: to offer another type of therapeutic venue to help trauma survivors heal and gain strength in their “broken places”. Storytelling has long been used as a therapeutic tool to help lessen the burden carried by those who have experienced trauma. Finding one’s voice can serve to diminish feeling marginalized and diffuse the intensity of the traumatic memory. Thanks to the thoughtful and insightful instruction provided by Warren Etheredge with RBP, veterans participating in our class have been armed with critical skills that have enabled them to challenge themselves in a meaningful way. Specifically, the conflict grid and nugget that Warren teaches gives writers a formula for translating a very private struggle into a character that is genuine and believable. Because Warren’s approach embraces that which is both personal and universal, the individual has the opportunity to feel transformed from a wounded veteran to an accomplished storyteller. Lastly, the content of Warren’s instruction is mirrored by his presentation style. He can provide constructive critical feedback that is accurate and honest, often accompanied by humor, and always respectful and encouraging. So despite feeling nervous or vulnerable, all the veterans in our RBP class have taken risks, sharing their stories and examples of their writing with others in the group.”
- Amy V Morris, PhD
Federal Way Vet Center
"Warren awoke a sleepy truth in me; I now remember why I am a writer and why I’ve always valued writing. And now that I am armed with new techniques and reasons to express, I am motivated to keep telling my story. He helped me realize that I’ve always had the keys to create and package beautiful truth. This is a first-class workshop that I would recommend to all fellow veterans."
- Anonymous veteran
Red Badge Project student, 2015 - present
"Your devotion to teaching those of us about storytelling is significant in so many ways. For one person to make the effort you do to help myself and other members of the class and to do so over and over again is a testament to your true dedication to the Red Badge Project and to the community of veterans and military men and women. I guess to 'cut to the chase', I am trying to say THANK YOU from all the "ruthless bad guys" who get much more than just Storytelling out of your classes!I"
- J. B.
Red Badge Project student, 2014 - present
"In February, the Legal Aid Foundation of Los Angeles hosted one of Warren Etheredge’s writing and storytelling workshops. Warren worked with LAFLA veteran clients to help them learn to express their psychological trauma and to regain the sense of mutual understanding and acceptance that too often is buried by the prolonged, solitary experience of pain. Modern warfare robs generations of young men and women of their innocence, leaving them profoundly changed upon their return home, with injuries that loom below the surface. In a tradition that dates back to Hemingway, Warren is engaged in the labor of giving veterans the tools to create a sense of self, when the inescapable suffering of war has shattered old realities. For our veteran clients, Warren is a source of hope. He is a gifted storyteller who unlocks their ability to locate their inner voice, to speak with authority once more about matters of conviction and faith. We can’t think of a better candidate."
- Silvia Argueta
Legal Aid Foundation of Los Angeles
“The Red Badge Project has inspired me to be more creative and take chances with my writings. Before I started participating in RBP, I was nervous to share my thoughts and ideas with anyone. My stories and poems have helped release some of that stress and tension that I carry with me as a veteran with PTSD. I still have trouble talking to people in my life about difficult emotions and memories, but I find the characters in my stories help express those raw emotions better than I ever could. Red badge Project has given me more confidence and has provided several new healing tools for my life long journey with PTSD.”
Red Badge Project student, 2014
"As a teacher / mentor to screenwriters, Warren empowers exploration of a deeper truth that is not just daring and universal but undeniable for the survival of humanity. Not one to get caught in debates about whether plot is more important than character or vice versa, Warren challenges and demands authenticity in the written word that brings all intellectual constructs of screenwriting into an integrated whole. As someone who is in touch with the reality of the screenwriting trade and the film industry, his approach to the craft is all heart, and he won't shy away from speaking the truth, even if it is unflattering."
- Monish Gangwani
Writer/Director - Lotus In The Mud Studios
"I came to TheFilmSchool with the idea that I had a strong grasp of character. Warren Etheredge's class made me realize I had only scratched the surface. His ability to understand people and connect with their experience is eclipsed only by his ability to pass that skill on to his students. His class and subsequent mentorship have changed the way I write for the better on so many levels."
- Jenni Prange Boran
Writer/Director, THE FALLS
"Warren is a story catalyst. He takes what you've done and suggests ways to heighten it to another level and then some and then some more. His keen observations, awe inspiring experience, sense of humor and big, bold heart compel you to go further as a writer and as a person. I work with Warren because of the golden eggs that he lays for me to take away and hatch. It's a truly rewarding and wonderful thing to get to work with someone in that way."
- Trina Harris
Screenwriter, DOUBLE BLIND
"Just watched your interview with Dorothy Parvaz and as usual you did a stunning job. (As did she.) You continue to be one of the best kept secrets in America and it’s just not fair to America."
- Mark Lipsky