writer2These days when so many Hollywood writers have lost their deals and/or jobs, they need a an outside workplace. Unfortunately, one of those is in danger of closing after 6 years because the current economy has taken its toll. It’s theOffice in Santa Monica. I have no financial or other relationship to this place except I know a bunch of scribes who work there on a daily basis. Its alumni include Paul Haggis, Sheldon Turner, Darren Star, Gigi Levangie, Justin Zackham, Jim Uhls, Ed Solomon, Joss Whedon, Paul Feig, Chris Henchy, Pete Chiarelli, and many more. (Supposedly, theOffice was inspired by JJ Abrams who used to write at various Starbucks in the area.) The guy who runs it is a writer and he recently emailed me and members, “Over the past 12 months, our membership is down 25%, and each month we are continually below break-even numbers. And when I say break-even, I’m not including a salary for myself, which I have never taken…

“The building landlord is unwilling to give me (or the cleaners next door) a temporary break on the rent. And the only other way I can keep this place going is by generating more income. That’s why I’m opening up this discussion with you and welcome any thoughts or ideas you may have. Are there untapped markets perhaps I haven’t thought of? Are their referrals that you can make? Industry players who may be able to get the word out to successful writers around town? I can’t afford to advertise so I need to be creative and think outside of the box. Moving is not an option. I have a 10-year lease and I cannot afford to re-open somewhere else. We have to make it work here.” I’m sure other places like this are having the same problem. Can’t we help them survive?