Friday, October 24, 2014

Happy Friday

It was during my late twenties and early thirties that I was most active and productive as an art worker. And from that time, this is one thing I remember: Being successful with 19 grants in a row. I decided there were two reasons for the string of successes: The project, professionalizing the programming of Presentation House, North Vancouver's then emerging cultural centre, and my technical writing and budgeting skills.

The financial outcomes from those successes benefitted Presentation House. But those successes had a significant effect on my psyche—each one was objective, tangible proof that I was a decent technical writer.

This morning, my friend Di, a television and film professional I respect enormously and trust like a twin, sent her notes having read Uncle Gus' Monkey  at my request. Her response, plus the Praxis response, has, like the string of grants, convinced me of two things: (This is semi colon day.) Warren wins again. I saw how smart he was in rehearsals for Knock Knock, and his belief that my story (and our screenplay) should be a film is being confirmed by every test.

I feel that we are contenders and it feels really really great to feel this confidence. Screenplays, it turns out, are a hybrid of literary writing and technical writing. Writing text that has to accompany imagery makes it very technical and there must be specific components—marks hit. That is why it is technical. But then there has to some magic in the dialogue to ignite the emotions of the viewers.

All enjoyed a confident professional life, claiming personally part of the success of the 19 grants. But I never felt like a "real" writer. Rightly or wrongly, I have always thought of a "real" writer as being a writer of fiction (don't freak out Beth), and so now I feel like I have always wanted to feel—like a "real" writer thanks to Dwight, who pushed me to write Knock Knock, and Warren who saw its potential to become Uncle Gus' Money. And also thanks to Kim who provoked and is producing Trudeau, the Felons and Me.

I mean those thanks and I mean them profoundly sincerely. There is no gift greater than a wonderful experience. Dwight, Warren and Kim have me manic with affection, gratitude and respect.

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