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

Nicholl Fellowship

I’ve gotten some hits from Search Engines about the Nicholl Fellowship, so I thought I’d do a little post explaining what it is and how I’m doing in it.

[Read more…]

The Gayification of Lady TV

Lifetime and Oxygen are, I think, trying to take the Fab Gay Crown from Bravo.  I mean, Lifetime desperately fought tooth and nail to get Project Runway.  And it’s, of course, the most fantastic, gayest thing on TV.  It should be noted, that I <3 the gay.  <3 it bad.

But, for those of you who doubt Oxygen has the capacity to get out of it’s old lady brand, Naughty Kitchen is going to be just as gaytastic.  The lead character is as husky voiced and sassy as your average drag queen, though she is in fact a woman.  Her obsession with pink and feminization is an extreme gender performance perhaps one step below Divine’s.  But the cast of characters takes this even further.  The women are almost all extremely loud, brassy and independent, and the men are almost invariably gay.  Gay gay gay gay gay.  You know what I’m talking about.  Finger snap, head snap, eyebrow.

Could it be gayer?

I mean, 1, look at the hair, and 2, count the amount of bj mouths.  It’s gayer than men kissing in front of a rainbow runway with hair stylists and makeup artists singing “Body Beautiful“.*

So, I mean, obviously I’m telling you to check it out, I’m waiting in great anticipation!

*Full Disclosure: To Wong Foo, Thanks for Everything, Julie Newmar is the first movie I have a strong recollection of seeing in the theater, probably because I saw it a half-dozen times thanks to a babysitter completely willing to leave me at the theater and it being the only not rated R movie for a few weeks.

Researching Mormons

My re-write has come to a complete halt at page 7 because I’m writing a Mormon character and don’t feel like I know quite enough about LDS to be able to plot her exactly.  She’s nebulous.  I may skip over her scenes and come back, but I hate doing that.  In this re-write, her struggle with her secret Mormonism is meant to be a defining characteristic.  Unfortunately, I don’t know any Mormons who’ve married regular ol’ Christian folks, so I have to scour the internet for personal recollections.  On the one hand, thank FSM for the Google, on the other, it’s a time suck google is my dear and glorious leader.

060307jennyfoo_demotivator_garments