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I'm a poet.

I've also written:

Documentary films
Educational texts
Creative nonfiction
Drama for stage


I'm a photographer too, raised by a family of dedicated photographers.

This place is a storehouse for my stuff.

I think a lot about history, nature and the soul.

I grew up in North Dakota. My mother is the child of Norwegian and German farmers, so I’m from a family with a legacy in one of America’s oldest traditions. My father is an immigrant from Colombia, so I’m also a first-generation American. I left my small town to compete in the city. I'm lucky to have a joyful life with my wife and two young children in the fabled Northeast district of Minneapolis, USA.

Welcome.

--Jon Quijano

Site last updated 8/27/2019
- New photography

 

AWARDS & HONORS


publications

screenwriting

Through 1968, we learn about gold

2009 historical documentary

Credits: Producer, Director, Screenwriter, Researcher, Narrator, Actor

A curious look at the historic year 1968 through the lens of economics—namely, the gold standard. By learning the story of the gold standard, I tried to show that recent events can have fascinating connections to the distant past. For this film, I scoured resources at the Library of Congress and Archive.org and sought the advice of several Minneapolis economic leaders, including Dr. Christopher Phelan of the University of Minnesota, who appears in the film. The film is set to an entrancing musical score, which I commissioned from producer and songwriter Lance Conrad of Humans Win! Recording Studio.

Archived at the Minnesota Historical Society  |  View the film

 

Rosalie Wahl: Vision For a Better World

2008 historical documentary

Credits: Producer, Screenwriter, Researcher

Accepting the MN Historical Society award for Best Depiction of the Post-War Boom.

Accepting the MN Historical Society award for Best Depiction of the Post-War Boom.

The film traces the life of Rosalie Wahl from her humble beginnings in a one-room schoolhouse in rural Kansas to her groundbreaking appointment to the Minnesota Supreme Court and explores the evolution of her social consciousness. Rosalie was gracious enough to sit for an interview for the film. The film's photography and research sources came courtesy of the Wahl family and the Minnesota Historical Society.

Archived at the Minnesota Historical Society  |  View the film

 

Wells Lewis: Lost Heir to a Minnesota Son

2007 historical documentary

  • Winner: Audience choice for its screening group at the 2007 MN Historical Society Greatest Generation Film Project.

Credits: Producer, Director, Screenwriter, Researcher

A biography of the first son of Nobel laureate novelist Sinclair Lewis. The film tells how Wells Lewis was raised among the social elite but eventually found his own place by joining the Greatest Generation on the battlefields of World War II. This piece arose from original research in Sinclair Lewis's family archives at the Minnesota Historical Society.

Archived at the Minnesota Historical Society  |  View the film

 

educational textBooks

Click image to reach Amazon purchase page.

Click image to reach Amazon purchase page.

Make Your Own Horror Movie

2012, Capstone Press      ISBN 1429675284

Content: It's key to know the types of horror movies, so I began by listing some of the most popular, discussing their unique qualities. Other highlights include strategies for how we can scare the audience with lights, camera, and costumes. Of course, there are a few recipes for making convincing gore effects.
Style: Horror craftily exploits human psychology with technical tricks. So I had to write conceptually but simply enough for my youth audience, using screen shots from classic horror films to illustrate my points.
Audience: Young Adult
Length: 48 pages

 
Click image to reach Amazon purchase page.

Click image to reach Amazon purchase page.

Make Your Own Sci-Fi Flick

2012, Capstone Press      ISBN 1429675314

Content: Sci-fi is such a "how-to" genre. How to make futuristic costumes; How to build futuristic filming sets; How to incorporate futuristic-looking locations in your own town; How to make cool sound effects; How to use a green screen.
Style: The possibilities of sci-fi are so wide open, since the imagination is the only limit. I saw this book's role as a starter set of ideas for bringing any dream to life.
Audience: Young Adult
Length: 48 pages

 
Click image to reach Amazon purchase page.

Click image to reach Amazon purchase page.

Make Your Own Action Thriller

2012, Capstone Press      ISBN 1429675292

Content: This book revolves around Screening Room sections, which feature classic action films, from Hong Kong kung fu to Indiana Jones. For instance, I use The Bourne Identity  to show how shots are edited for a car chase. I diagram special camera techniques used for creating action-packed shots. And I give pointers for writing an action-packed story.
Style: In this book, I used a lot of guiding visuals, since action stories are mostly told through the action onscreen. The writing mainly compliments the visual information.
Audience: Young Adults
Length: 48 pages

 
Click image to reach Amazon purchase page.

Click image to reach Amazon purchase page.

Make Your Own Comedy

2012, Capstone Press      ISBN 1429675306

Content: Comedy actually takes a lot of thought. What is funny, I ask, and how can we think of funny ideas? Dialogue is important to comedy, so I share some of my own exercises for limbering up the writing instincts. I give additional pointers for letting actors improvise their dialogue. When the movie's done, I explain how use a test audience to see if any jokes need more work.
Style: Like my book on horror, this was a very conceptual book. However, while horror uses technical tricks to exploit fear, comedy uses writing tricks to get people to laugh.
Audience: Young Adult
Length: 48 pages


professional Writing and analysis

Knowledge Management analyst, Ameriprise financial (June 2013-April 2017)

Wrote reference articles that ranged from complex instructional procedures to policies regarding ownership changes. Developed simplified versions of training materials for field financial advisors. Wrote 250+ articles. Subject matter expert in complex financial products, money movement, client and financial professional service, ownership/beneficiary change, divorce settlement, and estate settlement. Regularly wrote resources on subject matter where I was not an expert, requiring quick learning, analysis, and personal networking skills. Developed software navigational communication and updated all product changes. Partnered with stakeholders in matching document development with changing business needs.

  • Nominated for 2017 Chairman’s Award; recognized for the development of a new departmental role.

  • History of success in process optimization and streamlining of communication. Through use of analytical tools, have researched how individuals search for articles as well as frequency to optimize search.


Education & professional development

  • Bachelors of Arts: English - Literature and Writing (2003, St. Cloud State University)

    • Summa cum laude honors

    • Minor: History

  • Lead Editor, The Upper Mississippi Harvest, literary journal of St. Cloud State University (2001-2003)

  • Series 6 and Series 63 financial registrations