I'm Sylvia L. Jones

After an award-winning career in journalism, I wanted to tap into my creativity and tell stories that would entertain. So, I took a huge leap of faith. I quit my job in Chicago and headed to Hollywood! 

Soon after transitioning my career, I was writing for shows airing on Showtime, Starz, Paramount+, and NBC. Longtime writers started seeking me out, asking how they, too, could achieve their goals. While there is no singular road to success, I quickly realized there were specific ways I could help.

Now I use the lessons I’ve learned to help people just like you find their path to the TV writers’ room. I share secrets to selling yourself and your stories so you can live the screenwriting career of your dreams.

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Boost Your Writing

Learn how to write unforgettable characters that hook Hollywood on your stories.

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Develop your personal story so you can attract agents and producers who want to work with you.

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Get the tools to shoot your shot and land the professional writing gigs you deserve.

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My Story

I always knew I was a storyteller, and after earning dual degrees in Communications and Psychology from Stanford University as well as a Master’s in Broadcast Journalism from Northwestern University, I worked hard to become a successful journalist. In my 20-year career, I was blessed to cover monumental events including the 9/11 attacks from ground zero, President Barack Obama’s historic elections and the 50th anniversary of the March on Washington. Then, like many mid-lifers, I wondered, “What’s next?” 

My desire to learn screenwriting as a craft led me to the Professional Program in Writing for Television at UCLA and the Producers Guild of America’s Power of Diversity Master Workshop. Though I excelled in both programs, my transition from television news producer to working Hollywood writer didn’t magically happen. 

Even though I was a bit more seasoned than your average newcomer, I eagerly accepted entry-level positions for the chance to work on Hollywood sets. My willingness to do the grunt work and learn the business from the ground up, helped land my first job in a writers’ room on Showtime’s “The Chi.” My training and work ethic afforded me the opportunity to develop and pen the script to the Queen Latifah, Mary J. Blige and Missy Elliott produced television biopic, “The Clark Sisters: First Ladies of Gospel.” Since then, I’ve written for series including Starz’s “Power Book IV: Force,” NBC’s “The Endgame,” and Ava DuVernay’s “Cherish the Day” on OWN among others. I achieved what I set out to accomplish, yet…

I felt frustrated that so many other talented writers like me were still outside of  the success circle. I accomplished my goals through a lot of hard work, strategic networking, and faith – both in God and in the process. But success for me alone will never be enough.

That’s why the Sounds Like Joy Writers’ Retreat was born. Through this annual event, I empower others on their journey to a screenwriting career by sharing my personal path to success and many of the inside Hollywood secrets I’ve discovered along the way.

"Sylvia's conference has been a gold mine! Very professional and down to earth"

- LaTasha Lee


"Sylvia is open and transparent. She is doing everything she can to bring others along with her."

- Linda Lorelle

Former News Anchor, KPRC-TV Houston

"I enjoy Sylvia as a presenter. She has a great personality and I feel inspired"

- Jenni Lamb


Why I Do It

Navigating Hollywood is not for the faint of heart. My success was no accident. I moved with purpose and intention to implement a strategy that aligned with my goals. And while my story is full of career highs, there have been many personal challenges and setbacks as well. I’m grateful for the people who were willing to help me when I needed it most and I want to pay it forward.

Now, I am in a position to help writers who want the same success, but don’t have the framework to make it happen. It is my mission to help as many writers as possible to find their path to Hollywood and the life they want for themselves and their families.