Monthly Archives: December 2015

Goodbye 2015 . . .

So I guess I will write about all the things that happened to me this past year.

OK, not all the things. Some of them I just don’t remember so well, and some I don’t want to remember.

I finished a masters of arts in media production! I wrote a feature film script! I learned a lot of things. I moved into a co-op and fell in love with my new neighbourhood, Cabbagetown. I made some new friends. I scratched some scratch and wins and won and lost and won and lost.

I saw a falcon at the Necropolis where I take my pups for a walk every day. It was big, and didn’t eat my dogs thank god!

I finally got to read an academic essay written about my work, in particular my video Boi Oh Boi, and it made me feel validated, especially since a lot of people don’t really ‘get’ Boi Oh Boi. I will post a link to that soon!

I went to Paris with Mom, who complained about a lot of things, and we saw trios of soldiers armed with automatic weapons patrolling various places. And 11 days after we got home the big terrorist attack happened there. Which explained all the soldiers.

I went to Manitoulin Island and mentored some aboriginal female youth in making Super 8 films at Weengushk Film Institute with Female Eye Film Festival. It was fun and good and the films so far are turning out awesome.

I got a residency at Charles Street Video with ImagineNATIVE and made a short called “2 Spirit Introductory Special $19.99” and it has screened at ImagineNATIVE and it’s screening in San Francisco and Palm Springs next year.

Next year is a day away! Less than that!

I told a crush I liked her but she wasn’t interested. I got another crush who probably knows I like her but I haven’t said anything. I have probably blushed though. I DID NOT get into a romantic relationship this past year. But that’s ok, because it’s nothing new.

I spent a lot of time with my mother the last few months, I saw her here in Saskatoon for two weeks in September, we went to Paris together, she came to Toronto for a week when I graduated and screened my video. And now I am here again for the next 12 days and previous couple of weeks for the holidays. And when I get back I won’t see her for months again.

I got a Canada Council grant to write a screenplay about addictions at Christmas!

I got a Toronto Art Council grant to make two more 2 Spirit videos!

I’m waiting to hear from Ontario Art Council!

I’m still trying to find the ultimate part time job that will let me make a decent income AND be a mostly full time artist. I’ve been working on getting some teaching jobs, so far nothing, BUT I have some hopes for the future!

Overall 2015 was a good year for me! I have a Masters! New work! A screenplay! Some money! Things could get even more awesome next year. I am still looking for a producer for my script. I got turned down for the Berlinale Talent Lab Script Station BUT they said I showed promise and should apply again next year. Also I did the application kinda half-assed because I was running short of time and not thinking things through.

So I guess I can’t complain. Life was mostly good to me. It’s been over a year since Grandma died, and that has been hard, and I still want to talk about her like she is still alive. I have dreams about her.

Aside from that, I am just getting more comfortable being with myself and the dogs in our own place. The dogs are nice roommates. A bit barky tho.

Children and Phud.

Tonight there erupted a scene of immense chaos. My nephew is deeply invested (and has been his whole life) in a stuffed frog named Froggy. Anyway, after sleeping a while tonight he wakes up and wants Froggy and Froggy is momentarily missing and much crying and screaming and shrieking ensues. Meanwhile I am trying to poop in the bathroom and Posey gets distressed and starts barking and barking and barking with her squeaky girl dog voice and I am yelling at her trying to get her to be quiet but she won’t listen to me through the door and so I open the door to try and get her to come in and be quiet but she won’t and she just runs past barking and barking and my nephew is still screaming and his dad is yelling at everyone to be quiet and mom’s dog Neville is barking and I’m yelling. And FINALLY I am done with the toilet and I go shut Posey up and Froggy is found! Peace is restored to the land!

Oh man.

The funny thing is meanwhile I am having these little fanciful thoughts of MAYBE having children after swearing I never ever would. Of course I have had an ablation so I have no endometrial lining and can’t carry children. BUT I do have eggs so I was wondering if I could get my eggs retrieved and fertilized and implanted in someone else’s uterus (a partner? I guess so but I don’t even have one of those!). I thought it would be like penguins, when the mother passes the egg to the father. So I did some Googling and it turns out egg retrieval, freezing, and test tube babymaking runs into thousands and thousands of dollars. That almost made me regret my ablation. But lets be real, even if I still could house a fetus in my uterus I am utterly terrified and horrified by the idea of giving birth, so it’s just as well that option is gone.

No, I don’t want to give birth, I just want to like, have this totally sweet little baby to raise WITH SOMEONE ELSE. And of course it would be better than everyone else’s children because I would raise it right. But ALSO I don’t have someone else, which puts another kink in my plans. Because I’ve seen my mom trying to raise two children as a single parent and it was hard! And she had SKY! Which made it even more harsh. And of course me all undiagnosed my whole childhood and having major suicidal depressive episodes brought on by shithead children/peers bullying me at school AND genes skewed for bipolar disorder. UGH!

And that’s kinda the thing complicating passing my actual genes on is I KNOW the kid would have some mental health issues and I would feel really guilty if I had made someone else whose brain also made them want to die for no real good reason. Little Lemminghead Child. And that’s basically what I told my gynaecologist when we decided on me getting an ablation because my periods bled so damned much it looked like a murder scene in my bed every month.

BUT there are other options, like I could find some other woman who wants to bear and raise children with me and have a kid that way. Or adoption. Or fostering. Or stealing a baby. Just kidding on that last one, I wouldn’t!

So anyway, this whole fanciful baby daydream has been a complete surprise, and I still need to find a partner before I feel comfortable doing that.

ALSO I have started seriously contemplating doing a PhD. Is serious the right word? I don’t want to apply this January, I’m not ready for next fall. But maybe within the next three or four years. Which means I need to keep my student loan in good standing by making minimum payments. ALSO I would have to find a way to fund my PhD. ALSO it’s a lot of work. And I had no life during my Masters. BUT I also lived in a basement apartment during my whole Masters, which was brutal. Maybe having access to things like sunlight would improve my outcomes in a doctoral program.

I used to want to do the History of Consciousness program at University of California Santa Cruz. But I recently checked it out and basically I would need half a million dollars to do it. I don’t know about you, but I don’t have immediate access to that kind of money.

There are some programs I might like in Toronto. York has a media studies PhD, and there’s the Communications and Culture program with York and Ryerson that has a PhD. But really I don’t know. I think I need to think a bit more before making the leap.

So those are the two surprising things that I have been thinking about. I guess I have been thinking about other things too, like current crusholas and career stuff, but that’s not as potentially life changing as getting into a PhD program and having a baby. ALTHOUGH probably having a partner would make the first two things more conceivable than doing them on my own.

I did a tarot reading for the year ahead and I’m supposed to get into a relationship. So that’s promising. But aside from that it’s more of the same, starts out with lots of career stuff and ends with a Fall full of poverty and uncertainty. What else is new?

I’m applying for teaching jobs, I got turned down for one at OCAD but this time they actually cared enough to send an email saying I wasn’t getting an interview. So that’s good? Better than last time when they just didn’t say anything. I’m getting a more robust application together for ANOTHER teaching job so I hope that pans out. Really I just want one sessional gig so that I can start building up teaching experience and hopefully be more ready to apply for tenure track positions. There were some tenure track positions coming up at University of California at Riverside, which I have actually been to in the past to show my videos, and I would have been good, EXCEPT I didn’t feel ready enough to apply anyway. Because I think I do need some sessional classes under my belt before even trying to get tenure track jobs.

So, children and Phud. Both of which potentially cost thousands and thousands of dollars. I won $120 on a fifty cent bet at the casino the other day. Maybe it’s the start of some wealthy luck.

I really do want a partner before doing all of this tho. My psychic said I would be one of those people who finds someone to be with for the rest of my life. That is terribly appealing. I’m tired of all the hook ups I have had in my youth where I felt so disposable. UGH! I know I could be a good partner to someone. I just don’t know who.

There was a lesbian waitress tonight who was clearly into me. But she lives in Saskatoon, and I live in Toronto. It was over even before she brought my coconut chicken curry.

Stepping up my game?

I’ve been paying attention to celebrities and artists who are using things like Patreon and social media to launch careers. I’m not sure I am as famous as the guy who does duck parenting comics, and I am sure as hell not as famous as Amanda Palmer, BUT I am thinking I need to figure out how to bring more income into my life by doing work for the internet.

I have realized I really need to step up my game if I want to get enough of a fan base to get clicks and so forth. I don’t even really know how to monetize my life. I do all this blogging here, but I don’t know if enough people are really interested in it to throw coins in my virtual hat. Plus, while I sometimes write more opinion based posts from time to time, I am aware this is a fairly navel-gazing blog. Which is kind of the point really. I mean, I did get two degrees, sobriety, fall in and out of love a few times during the course of this blog, and have a really public manic episode. So sometimes that is interesting to people. Also it is handy because I can look at posts from the past to remember important details. Like how long it takes for a grant from Canada Council to get direct deposited.

But honestly I think the most appealing thing I do is make videos, the only problem is a lot of the high falutin’ festivals don’t like to screen work that has been shown online without a privacy protected password. And that means any of my really really good stuff doesn’t actually get shown publicly online until it’s gone through the festival circuit, which can take about two years. I could make youtube videos specifically for youtube on various topics I guess. BUT that doesn’t totally appeal to me either. I’m making a webseries right now. Which IS being made specifically to be released on the internet. It makes me wonder if I should try to continue it after the first season, because it was just written to be a one season thing. Hmmmmm.

Either way, I feel like I need to step up my game. My friend Irene keeps saying I should make videos about various silly stories I tell her from my life, which does make sense. I’m not sure what is holding me back. I think I need to accept that different videos need different distribution methods. Like 2 Spirit Introductory Special $19.99 is going to festivals, and I’m working on a script I want to get a theatrical release for, and this webseries is obviously gonna be on the web, and this Christmas “special” about addiction I am also working on might be good for television except I’m not sure that’s allowed in my Canada Council rules. BUT I am sure it will find a home somehow.

When I was younger I really just wanted to be a famous feature film director. Which I still want, but the internet has really changed things. And television has gotten more attractive to me to. And now I am realizing you can do all kinds of things and not just be one type of filmmaker/video artist/whatever.

Either way, NONE of that matters if I don’t figure out a way to make a somewhat stable income. I have a good track record with getting grants, but there’s a limit to how many you can get. And it sucks if you are relying on one and don’t get it. AND basically I would just like to get more money flowing. Through legal means.

Well, there is the Lotto Max draw tomorrow. That’s something to look forward to.

But really, if I had a patreon account (which I do but I haven’t launched it yet) would people be my patrons?

Saskatoon Holigays

I’m in Saskatoon! I’ve seen my Mom, cousin, Grandpa, sister, Dad, and other Grandma who helped me by giving me her Residential School Personal Education Credits when I did school. It’s been a nice visit so far, I haven’t seen any of my friends yet, for whatever reason. I always think I will see lots of them and then I get here and I don’t really. I think the whole sober thing still throws people off. Sometimes I don’t mind going to bars, but honestly sometimes drunks are really fuckin’ obnoxious to be around, especially in straight jock bars.
OMG baby Posey found the companion squeaky to her blue bird, a purple walrus, and is joyfully squeaking it around the house. She’s so cute!
Speaking of cute, she is getting WAY better! Her and Little Mister aren’t trying to attack Steven like they were last time I was here. She is getting way better, not barking obsessively at visitors, I don’t have to worry about her so much. She’s turning into a good girl! Whew! Because she was kind of rotten as a baby. I mean, not to me, but to strangers and visitors. She’s adorable though, totally sweet and snuggly and I’ve long wanted her softie side to be more apparent to others.
I haven’t done much work on my script while I have been here, in fact none at all. I really should do something. I worked on it on the plane, but since then nothing! HOWEVER since it’s about Christmas, in Saskatoon, with a Native family, I have been making mental notes this whole time. I need more tension for sure. It’s about being tempted to fall off the wagon on the first sober Christmas, but I don’t think it’s coming through yet.
My reserve is giving us $200 bonuses for Christmas! 🙂 We pick them up on Thursday. Mister is getting groomed the next day with part of my bonus. He’s gonna look SO GOOD! I think he needs his ears shaved. BUT maybe they can save his long locks, he looks good with long fur on his ears and most of the rest shaved. His tail is always long tho. It’s beautiful!
I’m still looking for a job and stuff back in Toronto. Really I just want something part time. We’ll see. I did get a small grant, and I might get another bigger grant. I’m not sure when those results are out, but if it’s sent in the mail I won’t get it until January 11th anyway!
I have to get my videos to my distributors. I have to get 2 Spirit Introductory Special $19.99 to a screening in San Francisco this January. Through The Looking Glass is playing at EMMEDIA in January too. I’m still waiting to hear back from some other festivals, but I think I won’t know for a while yet.
I did have something else I wanted to write about, but I honestly can’t remember it now.