(click on the links to read the reviews in entirety)
* Finalist for the British Fantasy Awards (Best Anthology)
* Finalist for the British Fantasy Awards (Best Short Story - Sam Sykes' "Wish for a Gun")
"Two stories I enjoyed a lot and two stories that shared a common theme were Raise the Beam High by Jonathan Oliver and Belle Deeds by Chrysanthy Balis. They both reflect on the power of stories and the importance of the human spirit..." -A Fantastical Librarian
"An absolute cracker of an anthology... Here's hoping there's another stagecoach to Pandemonium soon." - Starburst Magazine
"Anne C. Perry and Jared Shurin continue their unbroken streak of top-notch anthologies.... It's best if you just go and get this excellent collection, and savour each of the stories, ideally with hot coffee and cold whisky." - The British Fantasy Society
"Deadwood meets Twin Peaks. You don't need to be a fan of westerns to enjoy the stories in this collection. You just need to be a fan of dark little stories with lots of weirdness thrown in... a fantastic collection" - Fantasy Faction
"Serious, violent, desperate... This is the Wild West as a dangerous place to live, rather than a playground for big kids.... There are no bad stories here, and the best are very good." - Theaker's Quarterly
"This collection feels like it didn't have editors so much as curators. As impressive as some of the individual stories are, they way they hang together as a single work is even more so." - This is how she fight start
"[A Town Called Pandemonium is] high quality and built an overall picture of an old west town that I can almost taste (mainly dust).... A really good job by all involved and well worth a read." - Tony's Thoughts
"Ranging from the blackly comedic to the down right harrowing, I was entranced by each and every [story].... I've read Pandemonium a couple of times now and each time I feel like I've been utterly spoiled." - The Eloquent Page
"Wildly imaginative and brilliant" - Stuff & Nonsense
"It's not simply that there are no weak stories, it's that every one is worthwhile - moving, witty, clever or memorably horrific." - Freaky Trigger
"An excellent balance of styles and themes and there isn't a single selection that I didn't enjoy." -Africa Screams
"This book will leave you just a little bit jittery and not quite sure whether you're living in a nightmare or not." - Chris Farnell, Chris Writes Apocalypses
* The film was nominated for the Golden Berlin Bear 2005 and won The Prize of the Guild of German Art House Cinemas 2005. Actress Natasha Richardson won the British Independent Film Award.
"It's a wicked exchange, courtesy of the screenwriters Patrick Marber and Chrysanthy Balis, and the wickedness thickens once you learn that Edgar, unmanned by jealousy, decapitated his wife..." --Anthony Lane, The New Yorker
"The top choice is Asylum, a brilliant adaptation of Patrick McGrath’s celebrated and meticulously morbid novel about the tragic consequences of misguided erotic obsession...Powerful, haunting and beautifully crafted, Asylum deserves attention, praise, respect, admiration and Oscars." -- Rex Reed, New York Observer
ON THE WHEAT FIELD...
"Of all the scripts I read, hers was the one where I found myself thinking, "I wonder how this scene's going to end. That's really inventive writing." -- Normand Kurland, agent
* The script won the Diane Thomas Award for Best Screenplay
"I had the pleasure of working with Chrys on a large-scale project on WW2 history. The screenplay was an intricate combination of historical material with fiction, and it presented quite a few challenges, such as keeping the action going while staying true to the spirit of the period. Chrys's thoughtful commentary and insightful ideas helped the writing team to complete their task to a satisfying result. I'm looking forward to working with Chrys again in the future."
-- Leo Murzenko (Screenwriter, Central Partnership Motion Pictures and Film)
"Without a doubt, advanced screenwriting courses and multiple script consultations with Chrys Balis are the two most important steps I've taken to grow as a screenwriter during the last two years. Chrys has tremendous story sense and the best grasp of story structure,character development, scene choice and placement, dialogue and other screenwriting tools of anyone I've read or studied with. I won't hesitate to seek her consulting help on future scripts and to recommend her to other writers whose work shows promise."
-- James Peters (Screenwriter, Story Analyst, Literary Agent, Contest Judge)
“After five UCLA classes with Chrys, I can safely say you won’t find better script development help anywhere. She oversaw my first two screenplays. The first won three contests and placed highly in several others, and the second just received a RECOMMEND from ScriptPIMP.”
-- Steve Zawacki (“Northern Latitude” & “Orcadia”)
The best decision you can make for your writing is to have Chrys Balis in your corner. I’ve read dozens of screenwriting books and taken several courses, but undoubtedly the most significant positive impact on my writing came from her instruction. She focuses razor sharp insight into the heart of your story and frees the movie inside of you. Chrys knows how to breathe life into it-– she kicks ass!
-- Christa Meola (“The Glasses”)
“The energy and focus that Chrys gave to my story’s development is probably the most important thing that could have happened to my writing."
-- Vivek Kumar (SAAFA.org)
"Writing your first script is very much like stepping out on a stage in front of hundreds of people for the very first time -- and stark naked. Chrys not only gave me the technical tools I needed, but made the process much less intimidating with her thoughtful and encouraging insights.
-- Emil Valencia (semifinalist in the 2005 Filmmakers International Screenwriting Competition)
"Chrys’ advice and assistance were immensely helpful to me in crafting my romantic comedy script. She had great insight into character development, and her suggestions regarding plot were precise and creative. Just as importantly, she was encouraging throughout the process. And the proof is in the results: my script was a Finalist in the 2006 FilmMakers International Screenwriting Awards.”
-- Brian Hill (Author, “The Making of a Bestseller,” and the novel “Over Time”)
"After a consultation from Chrys on The Mona Lisa Caper, the screenplay was a top 10 semi-finalist in UCLA's Screenplay Competition, and went on to be a top-10 finalist in The Feeding Frenzy Screenplay Contest, eventually winning The Hollywood Outreach Program. I can't say enough good things about the thoughtfulness and detail of Chrys's feedback. She's the best!"
-- Gina Cresse (“The Mona Lisa Caper)
“So let me count all the great screenwriting teachers I’ve had in the past 25 years in the biz. Hmmm, well there’s Chrys Balis and… er…gee, I can’t think of anyone else.”
-- Roy Woods (Writer/Producer/Director, Out of the Woods Entertainment, Llc)
Chrys always has excellent suggestions for improving the script and, as an instructor/consultant, has an amazing ability to navigate many different genres from writers with many different personalities. I will definitely be hiring her again.
-- John Topping (“Son of Santa,” www.stageandcinema.com)
"She’ll ask you the hard questions. She’ll probe and dissect each scene until you’re both confident that it has found its place, and that it serves its function in your piece as a whole. You’ll be asked to dig deep, and will come out on the other side with a script that’s much more richly textured and layered than you ever imagined possible. Chrys generously shares with you her love and knowledge of the craft of writing and it has been my great fortune to have had her guidance."
-- Juli Royea
"The feedback from Chrys was insightful and to the point. She pushed me to go beyond my limitations. In the end it's all about the writing, and Chrys got me to that next level."
-- George D. Obermiller ("Ice Man")
"In taking Chrys' seminar at the Writers Studio, I was able to gain a greater understanding of story structure. Her instruction helped me arc my scenes, create new characters, and find clarity in the story's action."
--- Makeda Kumasi (“Barbwire, Watermelon, Beatles, and Blue”)
"Chrys Balis knows the essentials of story - that everything comes from character, and fortunately for me she also knows that writers - like characters - often need a push to force them to grow and change."
-- Amy Taylor (Writers Studio 2007)
"Chrys got to the core of my screenplay, analyzed its strengths and weaknesses (giving me valuable notes on what needed to be done to fix them). Going around the block to go across the street is not one of her practices, so if you want straight talk on your work, this is the place to be."
-- George Giokas (StaffWriters Plus, Inc.)