Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Mentoring Programme

I have just received an email from Adrian Mead with information on the Scottish Book Trust Mentoring Programme (closing date 8th September).  This is something I was reading last week whilst in Edinburgh at the Festival and it sounds like a good deal to me if you have a great project but need a helping hand to push it forward - and live & work in Scotland.

Here are all the details as per Adrian's email...

The Scottish Book Trust Mentoring Programme

Scottish Book Trust is currently open for applications for our hugely successful mentoring programme.  The mentoring programme is aimed at established and emergent writers, playwrights, screenwriters and illustrators who have a specific project on which they'd like some dedicated support.

Past mentors have included Bernard MacLaverty, Alan Bissett, Tom Leonard, Professor Douglas Gifford, Kathryn Ross of literary agents Fraser Ross Associates, David Ian Neville of BBC Radio Scotland, established screenwriter Adrian Mead, Philip Howard (former Artistic Director of Traverse Theatre) and many more. 

The deadline for applications is Monday 8th September.

For more information and application guidelines please click here.

Monday, August 25, 2008

2012 Olympics

The London 2012 Olympic party at The Mall yesterday was fun. There are no other words to describe it - it was just plain good, old, fun. Really young kids rubbed shoulders (or knees) with really old people; everyone waved their flags at the appropriate moment and cheered for the Olympic legends and musical interludes. People smiled. Laughed. Jumped up and down with positive energy gleaned from the masses.

No matter how much of a verbal kicking this country is given (or gives itself), if we could just bottle 1% of the atmosphere on The Mall yesterday we would win Gold all round.  So please stop whingeing, everyone, about the cost, taxpayers' money, recession, the building site that is East London, the incapability of the Underground, the money that will be invested into everything athletic and nothing else, the fact that it's in London amongst all the Sassenachs, that some bunch of misinformed pillocks chose a totally inappropriate piece of artwork to showcase British art. On and on and on I could go.

Be proud to be British for a change - and stop taking it all so seriously! A few cock-ups here and there? Just have a laugh - after all, we Brits are known for our sense of humour - right?

And if it really bothers you that much?  Go write an award winning drama about it. ;)

Sunday, August 24, 2008

The Rainy Festival and Sunny Party

Today I was at the very sunny London 2012 Party in The Mall. It was a great day all round - but more on that tomorrow. I'll let the main terrestrial channels batter your senses with Olympic Fever first.

So, Mac is back from Apple Hospital and I'm back from Edinburgh - my wallet's a lot lighter but the penchant I developed for food and alcohol on the run has balanced the lost/gained...errrr...balance. But what the hell, it was a laugh. Literally. 

My festival-going activities were mainly planned within the walls of the Pleasance Courtyard (in the rain) but then carried out at many of Auld Reekie's sprawling comedy venues (in the rain). I am very glad to have seen David O'Doherty just before he won the main award at the If.comedy Awards (previously known as The Perrier Awards) and very due a win he was.  Any thirty-two year old man who can sit in front of a full house singing about text messaging, picking at a two foot piece of plastic and still deserve applause, is well worth a trophy as far as I am concerned.

I saw a good selection of shows - from stand up through to audience participation - and never had it struck me so strongly, how much a backstory matters to a performer - comedic, ensemble or  otherwise. These were the guys that 'worked' - they had a sense of a solid background precedence/backstory, whichever. The ones that didn't - well, they just didn't.  

It's perhaps a strange observation from someone who has been a performer all her life, but background research and backstory formulation is just something I do automatically when prepping a role.  Nothing used to crush me more when I would ask my director, "So if she did xxx, would I be right in thinking she would need to have experienced xxx in order to get to that psychological state? Possibly around the age of xxxx?" to be met with a blank stare and a shrug. Not a stare and shrug in the vein of, "Go create your own character; do your own work..." but in the vein of, "Don't ask me - I'm the Director".  Hmmmph.

So, the moral of this post?  Get your backstory straight - in your mind, if nowhere else.  At least that way, you will know where the characters came from, in order for them to go somewhere. And you never know, some random actor-type-peep may even ask you for your input one day. If they can get past the shrugging Director.   ;)

Friday, August 15, 2008

Happy Hol-ee-dayz

Am early-ish and sharp-ish round up to the end of the week, as Tenacious Me is off to Edinburgh for a week of catching up with some new shows, talent and literati, plus lots of old friends.

If you are in Edinburgh yourself this coming week for the TV/Book/Fringe/Festival, then shout my name really loud in Princes Street. Failing that, leave a note here and I may force myself away from watching, listening and talking just long enough to check in.

If you haven't caught my short film yet and would like to, here's the link, but all that aside, the usual blog absence rules apply. Play dirty. Get drunk. Tell silly stories. Tell on eachother. Upload it to YouTube.

Anyone want a deep-fried mars bar brought back?

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

At last - The Film!

I have possibly had the most stressful few days of my life over the past 48 hours - yesterday saw me car-less and Mac-less. I now have the car back (after a very large bill - leaking coolant/cambelt/main dealer cr*p & spiel) but as for's gone into the Apple Hospital for a week or so to have a new case - and hence the fact my formatting on Tenacious Me is all over the place.

Anyway, this would have been bad enough apart from the fact that I discovered my uploaded competition film file was indeed corrupt - a nagging feeling I had in the pit of my stomach since uploading it last week. So where are all my film files? On my Mac in Apple General - but backed up of course. On Time Machine - a Mac back-up system totally impenetrable by anything other than a Mac. Unless of course you have a crack IT Team, like I do. So, after The IT Team had recovered a useable file, I then had to upload it via Slaptop, which just took forever. The IT Team only use Linux for their stuff and I really don't understand the whole cute penguin thing so couldn't use their hardware. ;)

Anyway, heartache aside, it's there - the very nice, helpful person from Tank Films told me so this evening.

So without further ado - have a watch if it would please you to do so. You need to click on the cute turquoise square crystal thingy which lets you view all the films including mine. HERE is the link. Enjoy. Please. :0)

Inflatable Dog Poo, Anyone?

Here's a breaking news story for you:


Inflatable Dog Poo Sculpture Wreaks Havoc

A modern art exhibit has wreaked havoc after blowing away from a museum in the Swiss city of Berne.

The exhibit in question, titled “Complex Sh*t”, was an inflatable dog turd the size of a house.

The exhibit, a sculpture by American artist Paul McCarthy, was blown loose from its moorings at the Paul Klee centre. An inopportune gust of wind then carried it 200 yards.

The giant inflatable stool brought down an electricity line and smashed a greenhouse window before eventually coming to rest in the grounds of a children’s home.

Representatives of the museum later revealed that McCarthy’s work of art had a safety system that would automatically deflate the inflatable turd in the event of a storm but admitted the device had failed to activate.


Someone please tell me it's April 1st or the inflatable sh*t's gonna hit the fan...

Friday, August 08, 2008

Strumming My Fingers

I have uploaded my film for "assessing" before it (hopefully) goes live on the comp site.  I will let you know when it is there - you can't vote (booooo), but you can comment (only nice ones please).

Not one for resting on my laurels too long, I already have three more definite projects in the very near pipeline.  Extremely fun and exciting, all this "Kick Your World Up It's Own Ass" approach.  Liking it.

Anyway, I digress for a change.  

It's Friday, which means there is a requirement for a stupid video.  Seeing as Olympic fever will be choking us over the weekend (or the air quality in Bejing, whichever gets us first), I thought I wouldn't bother with another Olympic blooper reel - soooo last week, darling.  So, here's another really ridiculous one for you instead.  I wonder how much this cost the taxpayer?

Have a nice weekend.

Monday, August 04, 2008

And Reee-lax.

It's only Monday and I need a break already.  I have had a fairly busy weekend but early Kid rises, busy Kid days plus late editing nights equals t-o-t-a-l-l-y k-n-a-c-k-e-r-e-d out.  On the plus side, not much to do on the edit now:  I am very, very nearly there - with around 35 seconds of visuals to edit and mix - then it's onto the never-ending list of 'finishing tweaks'. Fun.  

So, why did I decide to enter this comp, I keep asking myself?  Ah, yes, I was in danger of physically melting down into a blob of decreativity. I remember now. Still, it's only just over a month ago since I read about it and now I have a nice little short that's virtually in the can. Not too bad.  

So here's sneaky peek: a still from the exterior shoot last week - featuring my three beautiful little angels! Honestly, butter wouldn't melt. Yeah, right. 

Oh, nearly forgot to mention the first round of the BSSC has been announced as have BlueCat Semis...well done if you got placed!  My excuse is - I didn't enter!  How slack am I?!

Friday, August 01, 2008

Friday Shenanigans

Hello One and All.

A very busy week, mainly meetings and editing. Hell, I haven't even replied to many text messages this week, let alone hanging out at Facebook, and that's saying something.  Having stated that, a miniscule amount of my time has been spent working out how my World Domination Plans are coming along and then viewing this year's Virgin Media Shorts - I suggest you get on over there and vote for your favourite. There are some very strong contenders.

So, in what is becoming true tradition here are Tenacious Me, and to end a week full of marathon effort, here is a little silly to ease you into the Olympic Fever of 2008 which will be coming to a TV screen near you very soon. Before you know it, you won't be able to breathe without anticipation of Gold. Silver. Bronze. Lack of oxygen in Bejing. Whatever.  Just enjoy.