Weekend Wasted, but lovely just the same

I didn’t get any writing done this weekend.  I’m still feeling poorly.  I’m not sure what it is.  I have a history of unreliable health, but I’ve got a doctor appointment Wednesday.  Hopefully that’ll clear up whatever this is.  I’m just dizzy and woozy.  Which makes writing sort of hard, in that it makes thought difficult.

I mean, and I’m lazy, so there’s that.  I did talk a bit with F who has some thoughts for Bible Con.  We made up a stupid joke about Christians being like gay people — the only groups you just have to claim membership and you’re in.  You love Jesus?  You’re in.  You love other men?  You’re out.  Ah, it was funny at the time anyway — helped that we were at In-and-out.  Still working on that setup.

Other than that I pretty much played board games, slept, and went grocery shopping.  Oh, and expended way too much mental energy on this webseries gig that may or may not happen.  I’m hoping that it does, but if so, it may eat up any and all of my free time.  So that whole writing thing might be put on hold for a while.

I keep trying really hard not to get my hopes up for Nicholl.  I just don’t want to set myself up for disappointment.  It just would be so nice to be able to write.  And to have a little more money to live off of.  I am hemorrhaging my savings.

Pandemic

Pandemic

We didn’t actually play Pandemic (best game ever) this weekend.  I bought a new game called Space Alert! It has a goofy voice that tells you what to do.  It’s crazy and awesome and reminds me of Galaxy Quest.  I’m excited that it’s my first official board game purchase.  I’m a big fan of cooperative games.

False Controversy, Darwin

I’m a big fan of Pharyngula and PZ Meyers, and I think he’s seen right through some bullshit in this post, or at least, he’s mostly seen through the bullshit.

Basically, there’s a film about Darwin that has gotten foreign distribution but hasn’t gotten a distributor in the US.  And the producer is claiming that this is because it’s too controversial to pick up.  Really, Religulous got picked up, but you’re too controversial?  With your story of a man who never admitted to not believing in God because he didn’t want to offend his wife?  Huh.

I’m pretty sure that controversy has nothing to do with the film not getting picked up. Distributors are driven solely by their bottom line and American film audiences are very different from foreign ones. We don’t go to the theatres for small movies, that’s why we have TVs. The American market picks up less films because it’s much more competitive. Hundreds and hundreds of films get made thanks to Foreign Distribution money and we just never see them here because America has got ‘better’ films to spend their money on.

Don’t forget, most foreign countries like Canada, Australia, and the UK have tons of government money to support filmmaking that’s considered artistic or educational or otherwise important. The US does not.

I’m 100% sure that, if the film is any good, it will get distribution. Probably on television or DVD, maybe with a small theatrical run, but maybe not. There are hundreds of great, small movies that are distributed in foreign markets and not here. I think that the evolution content has absolutely nothing to do with it.

Yeah.  In other news, I’ve got to get on some writing this weekend.  It seems possible that this webseries thing is going to kick into high gear and I’m going to lose my free time.  I absolutely need to have a new draft by the end of October.  And I really want to have a first act for a second script and a treatment for a third.

Excuse my sentimentality

When I was young, my mother was really in to needlepoint, but she wasn’t very good.  Or rather, she wasn’t professional, she took on projects that were of her size.  But, I was obsessed with this needlepoint design that was, in her opinion, well out of her strength.  It was almost but not entirely unlike this:

CaringWings_MED

It took her two years.  Two years working on this little 12″ x 12″ piece of fabric.  And in the end, I had a little pink angel pillow that I loved third best, after Bear Blankie and Big Bear, of course.

For her birthday (Aug 31) I decided, back in the late winter/early spring, to make her a pillow too.  Now, I have no interest in needlepoint or cross stitch but my boyfriend-at-the-time’s mother was really into quilting.  I have an interest in sewing, so I thought, I’ll do like a little quilt-like pillow.  That shouldn’t take to long.  It’ll be done in time for 4th of July and I’ll give it to her when I go home then.

Ha!

Tonight, I have completed the epic quest of sewing.  All by hand, an imperfect little 18″x18″ pillow.  Inside of which is another pillow, or the remains of it, the last thing I bought in Tallahassee before driving to LA, a hideous orange Florida pillow for my little brother to sleep on while I drove.

Happy Birthday Mom

Happy Birthday Mom

Some days in LA

I don’t hate LA.  I mean, I mostly hate the town of LA, and I most assuredly hate the utter lack of organization and the awful public transportation and traffic and parking. But I like the people.  There are parts that are seedy and gross and feed off of the slimy outgrowths of crushed dreams, but there are all those dreams the slimy outgrowths feed off of in the first place.  There are people here who are talented, smart and funny.  They may not be the majority but there are more here than anywhere else I’ve lived.

One of the toughest things about being new here is your inability to help others.  Like, if I meet someone smart or talented who should be making something of themselves, it’s not within my power to simply hand them to an agent and say “Really, this guy is amazing, you have to build a career for him.  He won’t disappoint.”  There are so many people I know that I would do that for, without even asking something in return.  Because they’re good and deserve a shot and real support.

Instead it’s like, yeah, you and me buddy.  We’ll wait on the sidelines and hope someone tags us in and we get a chance to get the ball.  And if we get the ball, hope to hell we score, because we may never get tagged in again.

8 things not to do in rejection letters

It frequently happens that you get rejected in this business.  9 times out of 10 the rejection comes in the form of no response.  Occasionally, it comes in really patronizing, mean, or embarrassing e-mails.  So, if you ever have to write a rejection letter, here are 8 pieces of advice.

1. Do get the name of the person right.  For example, if their name is “Ashley” and it says “Ashley” 3 times in their e-mail, don’t begin your rejection with “Hi Arlyn”

2. Don’t insult their current line of work.  For example, if they work as a logger but have sent you a long list of credits in other fields don’t say, “I see you are a logger and therefore not qualified.”  That’s like saying Einstein wasn’t qualified to talk about physics because he worked as a patent clerk — refer to the relevant experience.  Which leads me to the next one.

3. Don’t insult their experience, if they aren’t what you’re looking for, just say so.

4. Don’t offer them a pity internship.  They applied because they wanted money.  If you need an intern, post for one.

5. Do have a website and an e-mail that doesn’t end in hotmail or yahoo.

6. If you want to be treated like a professional, act professionally  Every person you insult is going to be a person who says bad things about you and refuses to work with you in the future.  Yes, you went to Film School and worked on the latest direct to DVD film of a fallen, embarrassing starlet, but you’re still trying to make good contacts.  Don’t burn bridges.  You never know.

7. Craigslist is where you find affordable up and comers, not experienced industry professionals.  Experienced professionals don’t work for 1/6th the going rate.

8. Don’t admit your name is a synonym to “doofus”.  That’s just going to make them giggle.  Initials exist for a reason.

douche

In which I meet famous (ish) people

My work involves watching a lot of footage. I mean, a lot, a lot, of footage. There are several kinds of reality shows, but the kind I work on, the docu-soap, involves just following people around for months and months and months. And someone (me) has to watch all of the footage that they shoot. So, if there are 7 or 8 main characters whose lives aren’t always intersecting, and you film every day, every week from May through September… well, that’s a lot of footage.

So, I get to meet someone in a show I’ve been logging since May. Which is completely exciting and a little weird. I mean, I know way, way too much about this guy. Not like, I watched a show with him in it, but like I’ve watched hundreds of hours of his life. So, he’s going to be at a major deficit in knowing about me. It’s kind of like I’m an unwilling stalker meeting my willing victim.

Also, Max Adams totally commented on my post, which is like being famous. And I’m friends with Dave White. So I have a little contact with famous (ish) people.

I once exchanged e-mails with Anne Rice. I’ve met and hugged Ben Stein. This was before he made Expelled, I’m not sure I’d be so thrilled if I met him again. But at the time, I was a huge Win Bin Stein’s Money fan. I almost stepped on Kristin Chenoweth when I worked at Warner Bros. She’s really short. Mary Louise Parker almost barreled into me on the same lot.

I got to meet Jon Stewart and Mr. I’m a PC himself, John Hodgman. The sweetest most adorable man alive.  I really wish to meet Mr. Stevie Colbert because he’s from Charleston, but that might not happen.

JH: Are you another one of Josh L’s family?
AFM: No, I’m a friend of Josh’s family.
JH: I call him Mr. L.

<3

<3

I'm a mac, he's a PC

I'm a mac, he's a PC

My mother met Princess PuffySleeves Christian Siriano.

Christian Siriano and Mom

inktip

There is a site called inktip that sells itself as a destination for writers to get their screenplays read by Bonafide Agents, Producers, Developers, etc.  I’ve been a psuedo-member for about a year now, but never bothered to actually e-mail in my signature, because I got the newsletter just the same.

Today, I’ve broken down, my curiosity has got the better of me, and I’ve spent the $60 to have my script listed there for 6 months.  It’s not yet posted, but I’ll keep you up to date.  I’m curious as to how it works.

Sick, Job Worries

Ugh.  I partially hope it’s swine flu.  But not really.  I’m just woozy, it’s my main symptom.

There are some cool things in the works career wise, including a web series that I may be able to edit/color correct the entire series and be paid.  I might even get to DP, which would be exciting, I miss DPing.  But, the contracts are in negotiation, so I don’t wanna jinx it by saying too much.  The people are really cool and I’m hoping to get their input on my Nicholl script at some point, probably after the next draft.

Max Adams, the girl who is one of the more famous (and cutest) Nicholl winners and who, weirdly, shares a name with a guy I went to Film School with and who holds the record for worst punishment ever at West Point, is also on Word Press.  I hold secret hopes that this post is about me, though I’m sure it probably isn’t.

There’s some mild chaos at work in my department, I’m hoping it gets resolved in a way that doesn’t lead to me losing my job.  I’d much rather leave for a better job than desperately search for any job that’ll have me.  If you got here because I sent you my resume, hi and welcome!

I’ve gotten nothing but sleeping and lazing about done in the last few days.  I’ve been watching an unbelievable amount of movies and documentaries about Tudor England.  I’d be hard pressed to explain my obsession but I’ll go ahead and blame the fact that I thought I looked like Queen Elizabeth as a child.

swine flu