So, as some of you know, I have been accepted into the M.A program in Film through Raindance Film Festival in conjunction with Staffordshire University. Yes, that’s right it’s in England, and I live in Canada … the wonders of the Internet. Although writing, directing are things that I’m passionate about, I have decided to focus my studies on producing. Why? Because filmmaking is all about business, and if you don’t make it your business than no one will do it for you. So I figured that I would learn the basics, and build from there, but I must admit that sometimes I feel so far removed from my goals and desires that I need to remind myself why I’m doing this!
So much has happened since I first announced that I had submitted my demand, and got accepted. Two weeks later we were plunged into the post-graduate program full throttle and there was just enough time to wash the kids, and feed them. Luckily, I have great parents and in-laws, and a wonderful husband to boot, so I can’t complain. I have been able to meet all my deadlines, and so far the results have paid off, but this is only just the beginning.
So let me explain why I chose to start these studies, because honestly I probably would have preferred going the “learn through experience” route, but because I decided to start this career so late in life, and that it usually takes ten years to build up a network of contacts, and accomplishments, and not that 37 is old, but I’d like to get this business of film on the way sooner rather than later. In theory I should be done once my son starts school.
So how has Raindance help me so far … you’ll be surprised that in less than eight weeks, I found a partner, and we already started our production company, Gaussian Film Productions Inc. We already have our first project underway, the 48hrs production in Toronto. This, for those that are unfamiliar, is a 48hrs shoot. You get your theme, character, and prop, and have a weekend to shoot it … it will be intense, but if done properly, it can double as a calling card for future productions, and mega learning experience. I have a couple of scripts I need to write, and I’ve already met loads of interesting people that will hopefully widen my network. So doing the school thing is really an accelerator to my career, instead of ten years, my hope is five, and I will build a business plan accordingly.
There are so many other great benefits, of which would be too long to list now, but the point of my post is to help any undecided writer that is considering taking the next step towards their career; make sure to find a hands on school that builds networks. You have that perfect novel, you are a stellar writer, then you need to move away from your computer and meet people. I know, not always easy! Trust me, just the family logistics is a headache, let alone nervously chatting with someone your not sure cares about what your saying, or you just don’t understand what they are about is daunting, but so far it has really paid off for me. There will be rejection, and the sooner you get over it, the better because it only takes that one person who likes what you likes.
I’ll let you know what the future holds.