Writing from July 2005

I’m OK too

The scariness hits home when you get SMSs and emails from friends you haven't heard from in months, asking if you're OK. I'm working from home, as usual, and won't be leaving my concrete bunker, from which I can hear sirens coming and going. Mary, who works near Liverpool Street and Aldgate, is fine too.

In Personal on 7 July 2005. 4 comments. Permalink

Ways Into Text

If I ever do anything with these acting classes, like spend a few evenings performing in a tiny no-budget theatre production somewhere out-of-the-way in London, then, with a whole lot of luck, perhaps even getting a paying part in something slightly bigger, leading to a role in a play people I know might even hear about which would allow me to say "I'm an actor" without feeling too embarrassed when strangers ask what I do, and I'd maybe do a few of those before dabbling in a bit of indie film-making for variety and a change of pace, while going for more endless humiliating auditions, eventually, with a following wind, getting a tiny character part in a real grown-up professional film with catering trucks and everything, and be on-screen in theatres across the UK for several entire minutes, and attend a premiere in Leicester Square that's a lot of fun but, really, is a lot of fuss about a film ignored by most of the population, but all of which helps set up a flukey moment where, because of someone who knows someone who happened to be somewhere at a particular time with someone else who knew this other person who'd seen this thing once, it leads to me getting a role in an American indie film that isn't to everyone's tastes but gets a few four-star reviews for its integrity and painful honesty, all of which just about raises my profile high enough to, standing on tippy toes, be considered for a part in a Hollywood movie that even normal people would pay to watch from behind buckets of popcorn on stadium-style seating, and, after a lengthy series of hateful auditions and interviews and phone calls and parties and promises of favours I don't even want to think about from my burned-out agent, I land the part and I can't believe it and I sing in celebration and after an interminable period of pre-production, during which I descend into a deep, deep depression, convinced it's never going to happen, I spend a couple of months filming, in the desert, in New York and, for too much of the time, in front of a huge green screen which will eventually be filled with more shiny, fast-moving and futuristic CGI contraptions than the human eye can take in, even when watching the Special Edition DVD frame-by-frame, after which I have another period of depression while the film meanders its way through post-production and seems to get lost in marketing labyrinths somewhere in LA while the production company is merged with its bitter rival who, the PR team smoothly claims, it actually has a lot in common with, not least its commitment to bringing the very best movies to cinemas around the world and, incidentally, increasing its profits thanks to the remarkable synergies and cost-savings now possible, but eventually the film, my film as I like to think of it, is released and my name is even on the poster, not at the very top, granted, but still perfectly readable if you stop and look, and I appear on talk shows with slickly-suited, self-deprecating American gentlemen to promote the film and if we, for once, cut the story short a little, I end up taking gradually more prominent parts in a few more films of diminishing worth but increasing profits, dabble with peculiar quasi-religions and have people working for me who insist they do important things for the international brand that is me, but I'm really past caring by this point and, after losing a lengthy battle to keep the flatulent and wobbling public off my perfectly golden private beach I sell up, sack everyone and retreat from public life, only to emerge ten years later in an LAPD mugshot, having been arrested while running, naked, with a long beard and curly black fingernails, from a conflagration I accidentally started in the hills while trying to build a fire in my elaborate treehouse out of rejected and increasingly inarticulate film scripts I'd been writing fuelled only by a diet of yoghurt-covered pretzels and forest creatures I'd shot with my eclectic but fearsome armoury, if that should ever happen, then the prosecutor will be able to direct the jury to the day that started it all, Saturday 8th January 2005, when I took my first Ways Into Text class at the City Lit.

Continued…

In City Lit on 14 July 2005. Permalink

Technical Voice Production

This term I've also been taking a 'Technical Voice Production' class on Monday evenings with Irene Bradshaw. My voice is one of the things I need to work on most -- although I can't easily tell what it sounds like, I at least realise it's often too quiet, it croaks out from the back of my throat and I don't feel I have enough control over it for performing.

Continued…

In City Lit on 15 July 2005. 2 comments. Permalink

Moving photos

Over the past few weeks I've been laboriously moving around 500 photos I used to have on this site over to Flickr. Even though I love Flickr, I was still wary about putting all my photos on an external site. Despite the fact I have copies of all the pitcures, it feels a bit like giving someone precious objects to look after. But as all my new photos go there anyway, it seemed strange to only have the older ones here. Also, images that aren't in Flickr simply don't seem as useful and connected to other people. I can now easily view all my snaps of Yoz for example. Should the need arise.

Continued…

In Web Development on 16 July 2005. 3 comments. Permalink

My first audition

A week ago I had my first audition. Not for a part in anything, but in an attempt to get on the City Lit drama foundation course -- a one-day-per-week, one year affair. I've enjoyed the termly classes I've taken, but just when the group is beginning to gel, term finishes and you have to start all over again with a new class. It'd also be good to have some longer-term structure if I'm going to take this acting stuff any further (although I've no idea how near or far I'll end up taking it).

Continued…

In City Lit on 21 July 2005. 3 comments. Permalink