Weekend Recap: Nominate me for Awards!

I am still sick, I have been sick for so so long.  I mean, I’m 87% better.  Which is to say I’m not totally exhausted but I’m still coughing and my nose is still icky.  I finished my course of antibiotics, so I’m guessing there’s nothing to do now but hope.

My posting is probably going to be erratic at best starting Tuesday — I’m going to be in South Carolina for a week.  I’m hoping to start getting some feelers for raising money there.

I was on set all weekend, shooting two different things.  I was script supervising the pilot for Alice and the Monster, which is from the same creative team as Gold: The Series, and then I “starred” in a makeover shoot from which I got a super cute dress that I wore to my company’s holiday party.  So, huzzah.

Also, you can nominate Gold: The Series and/or my editing of Gold for the Streamys.  They’re pushing for Gold to get Best Comedy and Best Ensemble.  Under individuals, you can nominate me for Best Editing, and you can nominate the super awesome Frederick Snyder for Best Director.  The site address is www.goldtheseries.com

That’s all for now!

Back to our Regularly Scheduled Programming: Pitching, Zombies, Glee and Otters

So, I have actually had a good couple of days.  I had a pitch with PitchQ.  They’re a service that records your pitch and posts it online.  I submitted a pitch to a specific call and got to go in and record it without paying the usual fee on the website.  It was a really great experience.  The guy behind the service is really cool, supportive, and open about the process.  He says they accept about 2-3% of the pitches they receive, and then have about a 1% success rate.

He also said if you’ve written a zombie script, you’re in.  Which reminds me that I have that zombie idea that I keep meaning to write about.  It’s actually web series in my mind — but maybe I could Love Actually that thing up.

And I found out last week that I got a promotion — I’ll now be Lead AE on a full season of a reality show, which is exciting.  It won’t start until February, but it’s a decent raise, and an excellent job.  I’ll even get to edit the webisodes, which I am stoked about.  Because I have a strong attachment to the idea that the web is the new distribution method… as soon as it figures out how to do that.

I also watched the entire first season (so far) of Glee.  Which I love.  Like, I want to work on that show because it is everything I love: musical numbers, awkward high schoolers, comically over the top bad guys you love, and occasional really touching and honest moments.  Also, the gayness.  The only thing that would make it better would be otters.

Delinquent

I’m sorry I’ve been so lacking in interesting things to say.  At the moment I’m just showing up to work and trying to write a business plan.  I’m doing a slight re-write of my Nicholl Script, “Bible Con”.  I’m hoping to have it and a new script ready to send to Nicholl this year.

So, I dunno, not a lot going on.  I’m about to start working on editing a short, but I haven’t actually started yet.  I spend a lot of time trolling the internets for jobs.  Yeppers.

Otters

Too Cute

Lost Weekend

I had a weekend that was no good for writing. I’ve set myself a deadline of end of Thanksgiving holiday for a rewrite of Bible Con and a Polished first draft of Dyke for a Day. I had time to work on it this weekend because all of my editing projects are floating in nebulous waiting for other people to do things. But I didn’t work because my shoulder is messed up. This didn’t make it impossible to write, but it was really uncomfortable to sit in front of my computer or look down. It’s still killing me. Maybe I should start dictating.

Instead, I just watched a lot of Christopher Hitchens. I try to imagine the God/No God debate from the other point of view and find I just cannot. Cannot imagine it. I suppose I am like Hitchens, I never lost my faith, I just realized I didn’t have it. I was eight, I found all my teeth that I’d lost in my mom’s room (why she kept them, I don’t know). And there it was, proof that there was no tooth fairy. And that meant no Easter Bunny, no Santa Claus, and no Jesus.

I am going back to Columbia, SC this weekend. Doing the red-eye Wednesday night/Thursday morning. I’m seriously considering trying to raise money and film my feature in SC. I think it could be done for a modest budget, and I think the idea of a Native Daughter shooting in SC is something that could raise some money. I have a lot of connections there, including with the university. I hold secret hopes that somehow I could tie it into the university and get a lot of young people involved with the production. There aren’t a lot of opportunities in film in South Carolina.

Maybe I’ll get some writing done on the plane. We’re going to not put odds on this.

I started watching Jeeves and Wooster. I highly recommend it.

Segment Producer: Ups and Downs

I got a segment producer credit instead of story assistant because of the sheer amount of work I’ve done on the show I’ve been working on.  This is super exciting, it’s a great credit.  Of course, I’m still making less than a living wage.  But there’s some hope that that will change by the end of January.  Which I need, because I can’t afford to live in Los Angeles on what I make, and I’ve been with this company a year now.

And, in more meh news, I’m probably going to have to go back to logging.  And because they’ve eliminated the day shift, that means a 7pm-3:30am shift.  I’m hoping against hope that something will save me from that schedule.  I worked it for a couple months last year and it was so depressing and awful.  It would be better this go around because it wouldn’t seem to go on into infinity, but worse because I’ve proven I can do more.

Nicholl: Another Apology for the False Congrats

Hi Ashley,

As many of you already are well aware, we sent two e-mails to you this morning. The first was a regret e-mail telling you that you did not advance to the Nicholl finals. Sadly, that was the correct e-mail.

We’re not sure why our e-mail data base system decided to add your group of semifinalists to the group of ten finalists to whom we were sending the congratulations again e-mail. We can only apologize for the error and ask your forgiveness for the confusion.

All of the Nicholl finalists received phone calls yesterday alerting them of their status. If you only received an e-mail from us, that means that you did not advance to the Nicholl finals.

After the Nicholl finalist press release is distributed early next week, we’ll begin distributing the contact lists for Nicholl quarterfinalists and semifinalists. Those will be sent to agents, managers, producers and executives who request them. We hold off on distributing the finalist list for another week or so, which means that those folks only have your information and not that of the finalists during this period. Typically, a number of phone calls or e-mails will be received by the Nicholl semifinalists.

Best of luck with your writing. Again, we apologize heartily for the confusion engendered by the congratulatory e-mail.

Best wishes,

Greg Beal
Director
Nicholl Fellowships in Screenwriting

Nicholl: The Email I Received In Error

Hi Ashley,

Congratulations again on reaching the Nicholl finals.

IAll of you have now been contacted, and regret letter e-mails have been sent to the semifinalists. Sorry that went a little slower than I had hoped.

So you are free to tell anyone and everyone about your Nicholl finalist status.

The Academy Press Release announcing the finalists will probably be distributed on Monday.

I’ll follow up later today with the informational e-mail concerning your letter to the committee, the Nicholl Awards Week schedule, travel (for those of you from out of town) and other incidentals.

When you receive this e-mail, could you please hit reply as soon as possible, just letting us know that it reached you.

If you have any immediate questions (beyond what will be in the next informational e-mail), you can e-mail me directly at gbeal@oscars.org or you can call us at 310-247-3010.

Thanks.

Best,

Greg


I was confused, sent an email and when that didn’t get a speedy reply, I called the number. I was expecting the conversation to go something like “Hi, I’m Ashley Miller, I received an email saying I didn’t make it and one saying congratulations.” “Oh my God, we are so sorry. That was an accident, I know how horrible it is to have your hopes raised. Forgive us! Good luck next year, you did really well, you should be proud.” That’s not how it went.

“Hello, this is Ashley Miller.”
“Oh. You received that e-mail in error. Sorry to get your hopes up.”
*click*

I think the phone call was worse than the not getting it and the false hopes combined. I try not to judge because otherwise everyone has been super nice and professional, but that was quite the brutal dismissal.


Our apologies. A very unfortunate glitch in our database resulted in
the unintentional emailing of the second email to a larger group. You
original regret letter is the correct one, sorry that you are not a
Nicholl finalist.

We are recalling the congratulatory email.

-Nicholl Fellowships

I can pretend this meant it was really close.

Nicholl: Not a Finalist

Dear Ashley,

With the judging complete, sadly, I must report some bad news: Bible Con did not advance into the Final Round of the 2009 Nicholl Fellowships in Screenwriting competition.

Having read a number of the semifinal scripts, I know that some outstanding work has not progressed. Throughout this industry, at studios, production companies and agencies, such judgments are subjective. The fact that Bible Con was one of 114 scripts selected from 6,380 entries may bode well for its future.

In January, we’ll send you a link to an application for the 2010 Nicholl competition, which will include a list of this year’s Fellowship winners. Within the next several months, we’ll post the lists of Quarterfinalists, Semifinalists, Finalists and Fellows on the Nicholl page — www.oscars.org/nicholl — at the Academy’s Web site.

For the contact list to be forwarded to agents, development executives, managers and producers who request it, we shall use the contact information you have given us. Check the information below to make certain that it is as you want it. If this information is incorrect, please change it as soon as possible via your online account, or let us know immediately via e-mail to nicholl@oscars.org or fax to 310-247-3794. Over 200 copies of the contact lists were distributed last year. Lists will be distributed in early October.

If past experience means anything, several 2009 Nicholl Semifinalists will become professional screenwriters in the near future. Best of luck in all your future endeavors.

Sincerely,

Greg Beal
Director