Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Is that all there is?

I survived an earthquake and hurricane....

Luckily both were not too bad for NYC!

Going back a bit it has been a pretty eventful few weeks in the city.

I landed my first official NYC Film gig working as a volunteer for the New York International Latino Film Festival.

I worked mainly with the corporate sponsors and such. Got to work the red carpet as well as make some great NYC contacts. Attended some fun parties and have some leads on some work as well as internships.

In the days that followed natural disasters threatened this town.

The Earthquake happened while I was watching Top Model and when I awoke from my nap I was bombarded by texts and calls from back home.

As for the Tornado. I stocked up on groceries mostly munchies. Couldn't resist the smore fixings in case the power went out.

The power did not go out. In face the rain was not that bad in the city. I walked through worst storms before.

I am glad both natural disasters spared the city. What is next? A Volcano?

I was surprised by how many people commented on my red carpet photo. I have not weighed myself officially or been dieting but have been making healthy choices and doing Pilates time to time.

I love this fall weather. Cant wait to start jogging!!!

Tomorrow will be my last night in the heights for a while. I will be moving to my new apt in Astoria tomorrow. I hear the neighborhood is nice. Cant wait to check it out. It is month to month so if the heights comes a calling or other neighborhoods I am free to move on.

Cant wait to go shopping for my winter coats!

With 3 hours left until my alarm goes off time to wrap this up.

Goodbye August!

Monday, August 8, 2011

Change of a Dress

More like change of Address.

I decided to title my blogs with the title of Sex and the City episodes and this one suites my mood and the events in my life at the moment.

It seems just like yesterday I moved into my first NYC sublet in Washington Heights off of 160 and Broadway. The lease ends on September 1st and I went to go pick up the keys to my new place in Astoria.

I am already going to miss Washington Heights. The San Antonio artist transplants who live in SA and the friends I have made in the city live in the heights with me. I literally have friends on 146, 159, 161,163, 170, 175, etc. Luckily this lease is only month to month so if a nice place in the heights catches my eye I can be back here before you can say borough.

Astoria has alot of great qualities. It has more of a neighborhood feel and has alot more shops and cafes etc. While waiting for my future roommate near the subway today I noticed alot of students coming back from summer break. I am sure I will be seeing more of that in the weeks to come. Did I mention my new place has a cleaning lady? I shared a good laugh when I told my mom I came to nyc to be a starving artist and I get a maid!

I just came off of a very nice three day weekend. Tomorrow is my regular shift, but Wednesday on I will be working Tuesday-Saturday mornings as early as 4am. Its alright I still have my day and night Saturday, Sunday, and Mondays off. I will also be done with my work day before noon. So all in all it is a fair trade off.

This weekend it was nice to keep up my Pilates workouts. Today I did core suspension pilates. It was a great workout and cant wait to do that again. I love this. It brings back alot of dance muscles and is helping regain balance and helps you be aware of your muscles throughout the day etc. I promised not to weight myself for a while. Hopefully two months or so. My jeans are loose and I am looking forward to buying some new clothes later this month. I am also not dieting just making healthy choices. Heck gotta have some treats and eats sometime right? I love what Cindy Crawford says " I eat what I want, just not as much as I would like to." My saying is that you set yourself up to fail when you diet cause you can spell "Diet without DIE".

It was nice to feel plugged into my Texas actors by helping cast for a movie and for a commercial spot. I love the casting side. Although I would never want to take away work from casting directors whose lively hood depend on it. I love being a good back up for those who do not have the time to cast or are learning the craft of it.

My networking has officially begun in NYC. I went to the Act outside the Box First Thursday industry mixer and I was invited as an industry guest which meant unlike the actors who wore a blue name tag I got a red industry name tag. I did not send a bio, but the organizers sent out a bio based on my internet movie database credits and what was on Google. I was surprised when people asked how it was like to produce a zombie feature film? Or what it was like to represent actors in Texas? I must have met 125 good folks and brought four friends and colleagues with me. One even won a door prize. So it does pay to network! I cant wait to continue to go. This makes me remember I need to plan the Actors Network SA Summer mixer. They will not die just because I am in NYC!!!

So with all this life happening around me I did not give myself time to mourn the passing of Thomas Ensley. I met him through my good friend Sarah Bading. He was a unqiue individual. A culinary master, bongo king, free thinker from the bayou. We often sat together at the celebration circle as we would hear Sarah sing and bring us closer to our spiritual beliefs. Although we were not terribly close I feel for those who were close to him and loved him deeply, including Sarah. I finally had a good cry for Tommy. He was a beautiful human and touched many peoples lives!

Last but not least I got the invite many people dread... The 10 year reunion invitation. Not exactly but in the social networking age do we really need reunions? I know who has kids, and got married, and divorced, and married again, cant keep a girlfriend, who still goes to cowboys like they did when they were 18, who is balding, who moved away, who came back and is still living at home, etc. That being said with Facebook, the element of surprise will be a far cry from generations past. I am not against this per say, however I am against people show boating and trying to take all the glory for putting on together, and or spending time a select few whom to this day I never understood why they despised me, but I am at a point in my life where I would rather not spend time with those individuals. Now those 90% that I would like to see I would simply just ask to see them casually. I say all of this as if I do not want to go, but in reality I probably will go. I will just have a great after party and invite only those I really care to hang out with there. : P and I wont have to invent post its!

Saturday, July 30, 2011

Hot Child in the City

I am here....wow!

It has been quite a while since I did a update on my blog and I intend, just like my twitter account, to make updates more frequently. This can also let my friends and family know the in depth details of my adventures in the big apple.

First is first. I have been here for a little over two and a half months now and time seems to go by way faster here than it ever did in San Antonio.

I arrived on May 11th, which is my fathers birthday. It turned out to be a cheaper flight and I made sure to leave a gift behind for him. The nights before were filled with going away parties, goodbyes to near and dear friends, and a cross country trip to LA.

Going back a bit. I have been to LA several times before, but when my friend and colleague, Evan, mentioned he wanted to pick up some things I suggested driving him so I could get out of SA for a few days and mentally prepare myself for my move. In retrospect I should have used that week to tie up more loose ends, however a trip is never wasted. The best part of the trip for me was not the destination but the journey. The open desert road and music and chatting. All went well except for in Arizona where my brown skin will get you pulled over in a heart beat. The whole time in LA i stayed with my friend James. I did absolutely nothing. I was a hermit in his apartment and spent most of my days lounging around by the pool and seeing a friend or two and not the many I know out there.

Coming back home I had one day to go to a Film Festival for NESA and present them with the $500.00 check I had raised and go home and hang out with some friend really quick before heading to the airport. My brother pulled up to my apt to take my to Austin, which is where I was flying out of when it dawned on me that I had not thrown my clothes into a suit case. This would later come to bite me in the booty when I realized in my haste to rid one of my suitcases to save on the extra fees that I forgot my towels and pants.

At JFK Joseph greeted me and took me to a Peruvian restaurant and I made my little space in him and Melissa's nice apt. I later helped them move out three days later. I was left to myself those two weeks as I finalized what sublet I would take. I learned how quick and fierce real estate agents are in NYC. There must have been three or so visits a day and I looked like a hobo squatting with an air mattress in the middle of the living room.

Those two weeks went by fast. During that time I finalized my transfer to my job at Starbucks and started working the next week at 36 and madison.

This job is alot more fast paced than my other Starbucks but it is a steady paycheck and i like all my co workers, and i get 40 hours a week. That is a big plus.

I ended up choosing a sublet in Washington Heights off of 160 and Broadway. It is a four bedroom and my room is HUGE of nyc standards. I live with three opera singers and all are nice guys. Although only one is ever home. I like the area. Other SA Artists live here and are very close to me.

In the following weeks my adventures included having my first house guest from SA. In addition to seeing my first broadway show, technically it was in reviews, but it was Spiderman: Turn off the Dark. I agree with a critic that says it looks like an expensive amusement park show. Be it a good show!!! I was entertained and am not a theater snob at this point.

Speaking of theater, in my first month I was asked to perform in a Cabaret show!

I performed one song for a fundraiser for a local theater company. Granted singing has never been my strong suit the accompanist was super nice and the staff were great people to know. It was most fun to perform right by all the big running broadway shows.It was also fun to perform in a show where I did not have to audition after not getting much recently in the SA theater scene. I know I am a tough cookie to cast and performing isnt my #1 right now but its nice to say I performed in a NYC Stage.

Producing is what I am here for and I took a step towards that by enrolling and completing the Hollywood Film Institutes Producers Academy. This is taught by Dov Simens who will spend the first half of the class bashing four year film schools but in the end no matter that your take or background is in filmmaking will give you some honest and real answers for producing independent films. He answered alot of questions I get on a daily basis such as :" Where do you get the money to make a film?" "How do i sell a script?" and so on.

I also recently started putting my resume out there for production work. There is still alot more I need to do. One step at a time and I think if I do what I did in SA. Volunteer, network, be available something will come up. Persistence I think is half the battle.

I have also begun to write my first feature film script and am talking to other directors to see what I can do to be apart of there productions.

The nightlife in another story here. I try not to go out as much. Would much rather stay home with netflix but even that is getting old. Yes it is cheaper but going out you can meet people too. As for my social life I am keeping that really on the back burner. There are alot more choices here as far as men are concerned and I like the REAL men here versus the superficial side you get in LA and or the lack of choices in SA.

I have only been out a handful of times to a few bars and lounges. I did clear the dance floor at one of them. For some reason I have no problem getting attention if I am feeling "on" which is usually when I am dancing and or working. I guess it would be great if I could channel that energy when I am working a room. : )

I did not come here for romance but I will explore dates and getting to know people etc.

I have started to expand my friend circle but its a slow and steady process.

I plan to finish my script and in a week will be working the early morning shifts at Starbucks which will let me be done with my day by 10:30am which would allow plenty of time for interviews and or internships.

I am going to drop off some letters/resumes in person at some casting offices and talent agencies. After all that is how I got my start to begin with but my goal is to work at a production office on a film and or tv show.

I am playing around with the idea of submitting to agencies for acting work. Even if its extra work I could use that to my advantage.

I am continuing to work on my body as well. The walking has helped slim me down but havnt changed my eating habits too much. I started doing Pilates and want to do NIA and Bikram Yoga here and start jogging as well.

I move to Astoria in September and its month to month. It, like this one, is furnished and all bills paid.

That is that for now!!!

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Who's going to Hell now?

This new decade has brought what I hopped it would, inspirational energy, thought provoking situations, new beginnings, and most of instilled a New State of mind…or New York State of mind.

As the clock struck midnight and I sipped the tiny cocktail, as I made it a point not to get sloshed, at a friends house party I immediately jumped into my car to attend another shindig thrown by other friends and acquaintances when the Jay Z and Alicia Keys New York song blazed on the radio and with that came a smile that just popped out of nowhere. The same kind of smile that smirked from my face, which was a type that had not been present in a long while, very similar to a protagonist who solves a mystery in a classic thriller or love triangle romantic comedy film. I wondered what it was about New York that brought so much joy to my mind. After all I had never traveled to the city before and had been itching to travel more. I have good friends in there who are more than willing to open up there homes for me to visit and it is the biggest city in the nation. Being in showbiz too it was a major market I had not traveled to as well. For the time being however I am still in the Alamo city and now it was time to pick up and see what was in the near future for me in this market.

Finally I was finished with what I called my quarter mid life crisis. Being twenty-five and going non-stop since high school led to this inevitable moment in my life. I guess being an agent for five years, producing close to ten short films, one feature, a film festival, and trying to make sense of it all finally came to a crossroads and instead of signaling my car I decided to just turn it off for a few months. As mentioned previously in the blog before the time was spent well and presented myself with a new found focus and determination which had been lacking due to the consistent movement in my career and personal life.

It seemed that the first few weeks were spend running from hospital visit to another for family and am glad all worked out in the end and most were false alarms but that itself can take a toll especially when you find yourself being a pillar in many people’s lives. It may sound cliché but all of those moments can help one realize not to take any for granted but luckily that had been instilled in my for a long time which is why I tend to speak my mind. Speaking my mind has been put on the spotlight so far this year.

So let’s go right into that. I will assume that those reading my blog know who I am or at least have a good understanding right now but if you are just stumbling onto this then I will try my best to be descriptive without singling anyone out. Although when you do not mention any names guilty parties tend to speak the loudest. Yes, I was a talent agent in this market and took that job really seriously. I left the agency I was with on my fourth year and it had been a rollercoaster prior to my involvement and surely after. Although I considered it to be a legit agency some business practices were questionable but I always plowed through those and focused on getting the actors the best opportunities and working hard and keeping the work here in our market. I have had many affirmations during and since my departure and continue to value my relationship with the actors who I have worked with and continue to producing or promoting in the films or programs I continue to work on. Two main issues came up. The first involved an industry practice which was abusing a service needed from time to time which is putting actors on tape for auditions. While typically videographers or people in house would charge anywhere from $25.00-$35.00 depending on the time and prep and turnaround for the said service when actors are feeling obligated, although not forced at gun point, to be put on tape and charged upwards or $75.00-$300.00 for this service than that raises some concerns on top of paying higher costs for other services. Now in my position actors still come to me for my advice and I do not mind voicing my opinion on say my facebook or blog however I am not going to forget my tact and not mention names yet it still sparked some interesting dialogue. I believe my Facebook quote stated, “ If I hear about one more local agency charging there talent to be put on tape for auditions for there financial gain I am going to scream, thank you to all of you agents with integrity and all you actors who found them.” It did not take too long for one of the “local” agents to speak out against my posting. That of course caused me to post a note which stated that “local” agents violations from the state ranging from not paying talent on time to operating without a license. That website has since been flagged by that “local” agent making it harder for facebook users to see those said violations but they will always be available on the states Department of Licensing and Regulation website. I did not feel personally attacked because I felt I did not wrong expressing my opinion. An opinion actors seemed fearful of voices either since they feel that they would not be able to obtain other representation or because they do not know how to stand up for themselves. I do not mind being the cheese that stands alone as long as the truth is being said. This was back in October and seemed to die down until a few weeks ago.

I was told by a colleague of mine that an actor who I used to represent and who I still worked with on films I have produced and events I put together removed me from his facebook account. I was curious to know why since I had done nothing to my knowledge to warrant this action. He is currently represented by that “local” agent who raised so many eye brows and kicked up so much dust previously by calling themselves out but in this case I could sense they were behind the action the actor took to me and a few others in this industry. This was all confirmed in one phone call with that actor. It was unfortunate he choose this action but I did mention that cutting me out would mean I would not be able to work with him no matter in what capacity I participated in weather I was casting a project, producing a project, promoting, and or suggesting actors for a project all of which I get called for on a local basis. Why now though? Well my lack of calling anyone out cause even more dust to rise up not by the “local agent” but now with her actors as her warriors of words as I call them. My status stated “I miss the good ole days when agents just submitted actors for jobs and did not control who they were facebook friends with…yup she strikes again.” This wasn’t my first time at the rodeo but if my good friends and film colleagues wanted to know what the meaning was I was more than willing to fill them in. If anything they need to know so they wont be surprised if I don’t work with certain actors based on there actions. As I mentioned within a two hour period the next day I got attacking comments from the actors, all of whom I worked with, and many who I considered friends, all stating the same biased opinion coming from there agency owners mouth. If you want the play by play feel free to look back at my Facebook late January. I made one general statement which I think summed it all up and my good friend Jenna followed up with a nice statement which was my opinion from the start which was If you don’t like it then don’t read it! DUH!!!!! There were many times during the exchange of words when my close circle of colleagues suggested I back down and how dirty it was getting. I needed to stand my ground. I never drag someone elses name into the mud and based on those two postings no names were ever mentioned.
I do think if others wouldn’t be afraid to speak there mind I would not always be the cheese to stand alone and these places of business would be forced to change and adjust there practices more often. It also is disheartening when those close to you “do not have your back” out of fear of what people perceive of them. I am only referring to those I am invested into professionally and it’s a small number but if the same actions had been placed on them I would not think twice to honor there wishes and not communicate with those who hurt my business associates. I don’t expect them too since there are a few that will not be afraid to stand up for what is right. It was unfortunate the actors who I still am social with choose to fight using there agency owners words and therefore severing what ties I had to them. Behind the scenes many high fives and kudos have been given to me for not being afraid to speak out. I don’t consider that bravery…its just honesty and when your honest and have no evil in your actions you can do no wrong. What financial or personal gain to I have to benefit I continued being an agent after that job and continue to help actors get the representation they need as a service of kindness so I know actors are taken care of. I do not earn one cent when I do something like that which takes time and energy and stress. I do it cause it is what I would have wanted if I needed the same advice or guidance in my career. It does a hurt a bit I am not going to lie. I am human and despite believing in my actions, or lack thereof, and having tough skin, it is disappointing watching my peers not be able to think for themselves or in this case be led be evil and misuse. I learned though you can’t save everyone and those who you can need to listen before you open your mouth and give advice. Actors are people but not all people are actors…thank god for that! : ) j/k On a final note there was a sermon I remember my mom and I listening to as a mass a few years back. It mentioned how there were a few out there in the bible who could stomp scorpions and evil. My mom and I looked at each other and realized yes that was true. Some scorpions may have or may not have dreadlocks but either way they can be squished.

Let’s just say karma is a bitch and the wheels of justice are in motion and when all comes back around there will be a big celebration with lots of martinis and love!

So all that happened before entering the month of February, the month of Valentines and all that hallmark Jazz! Speaking of valentines it seems that side of my life has turned a new leaf. I changed my facebook relationship status from “single” to “it’s complicated” now many congratulated this in my life which I have yet to understand. However it does mean there is a lot of promise in that area. First off I had been social during the quiet time in the last half of my year and the new year brought that same kind of energy and then some. Although I am not in a relationship I am enjoying the art of dating. It’s for a romantic like me but taking a step back and not diving in like the inner Aries in me wants to so bad has been interesting to say the least. There is one person who although I do enjoy his company tends to take me for granted when I am 100% available so I did what I felt necessary and asked if we were friends or more….and it fell of deaf ears. Two days later I met someone who is amazing and attentive and attractive and whom everyone around me calls a “keeper”. It is weird seeing someone who is giving like me and is a gentleman and is easy going and easy to communicate with. Of course we are not jumping into a relationship as he is still licking the wounds of past relationships as am I from being put through the ringer. I learned what it takes to raise the value of your social stock and that is having one person like you as it turns out now three to four people want to vie for my attention. I do not have any alterior motives with any of them but like many people I am just getting to know someone and spending quality time together. It is very much like middle school dating but being that I did not start dating until recently the timeline seems about on track with that. Maybe when I am in my thirties I’ll date like a college boy and so on.

Film Classics is still moving forward with the international film festival and marketing to sell Doctor S and marketing of new projects. We decided to participate in Empire Magazines Jameson Film Festival 60 second remake competition. This is where filmmakers make a film in 60 seconds that is a remake of any feature film and we choose JAWS. We cast Cambell Westmoreland, Gabi Walker, Michel Janse, Quinn Leifer, and Ben Baxley. Cambell and Gabi had worked with us in previous films and are family as far as I’m concerned. I saw Michel at a showcase PrimaDonna Productions hosted and placed Michel with her current agent. She booked her first audition out of the starting gate. Quinn was booked off of his headshot and Ben was a referral of Collin my intern last year. I love working with these teen actors for many reasons. They all come from good families and I click well with there parents. They are well trained and work often for Texas teen actors many have been in feature films by prestigious directors. They also work well under time constraints and adapt better than some adults actors with far more experience. Work is kind of slow in this market for them so any opportunity for them to work on a film is fun for them and helps add to there reels and lets there agents know they keep busy in between auditions. The shoot and rehearsal took place at the Cameo Theatre. Dave Cortez was nice enough to let us use the space despite being in rehearsals for there new production, “Five Course Love”. We rehearsed on the Thursday before and shot on the following Saturday. The shoot was one of our quickest so far. We had seven scenes to block and shoot totaling the sixty second length. We staged it on a theatre and with the teen actors playing the adult lead roles including JAWS. I was happy with the finished project and now online votes will decide the five finalists and the finalists will be voted on by a jury panel which includes Edgar Wright, which is why we choose to participate. The winner will be presented at the festival in London by Steven Speilberg. Shooting for the stars is fun but the film for our catalogue will be nice too. We did not get into SXSW this year but I still would like to see all the films this year. One year we will get a slow I’m sure!

This month is all about the live theatre. I got invited to over seven productions which mean every weekend is packed with a new production at all the local theatres in town. It is a treat to see a lot of” my peers on the stage and see how far they have come in there careers thus far. I saw “The Hard Bargain” at the Overtime Theatre directed by my good friend Andy Thornton. I also saw “Five Course Love” at the Cameo. The other productions I plan to see are “The Boys in the Band Play” at San Antonio College, “Fire on the Bayou” at the Woodlawn, as well as the productions at San Pedro Playhouse, UIW, The Vexlar, Shakespere Theatre Company, and more if I can squeeze them all in.

Last night was a treat to see Dustin Lance Black, the Oscar winning screenwriter of MILK and other projects. I was able to sit front row and was able to ask him a question. I do appreciate his role being an activist and speaking through is work about the GLBT rights which are at a turning point in our lifetime. Something important brought up was how “Invisibility Equals Death”. This comes from how Obama’s camp barley mentioned the GLBT movement and Republicans did not at all. It is a clever tactic to ignore the issue and try to just make us invisible. It was discussed the similarities between prop 6 and prop 8 in a twenty year span. I do love how Harvey Milk’s message is sent to give people hope and forming alliances with everyone and despite one’s flaws not to be afraid to fight for having the rights every one is entitled to. That helped me reflect back on the comments thrown my way weeks earlier. Its not just about the GLBT movement but the movement of life. Dustin mentioned a quote said to him “Good things do not come to those who wait, they come to those who adulate.”

The timing of this lecture parrelled where I see the next few months. I am not going to be producing the 48 hour film project in SA this year and wish whomever gets the city producer job the best of luck but I am proud of upping the numbers almost doubling them and having six theatres sell out and hope that the numbers only rise this year with new blood in the position.

I decided to give New York a try. Either by spending a month later this spring or to explore the area this whole summer and see what dreams may come. I am putting my resume together and producer reel and going to attempt to land an entry level position at a major network or studio while writing my screenplays and prepping my own productions and continue to market the films I have produced and explore being a producer in a major market.

This is also early but I am partnering up to start a local acting school and network. Networking is important so I want to provide monthly mixers for actors and filmmakers to meet up and exchange information as well as bring high quality acting coaches and casting directors to this market as well as teach beginning on camera film and commercial acting for actors starting out in this medium and refer out the coaches to continue there progress. I plan to teach this spring before my New York trip and continue to allow the other coaches to teach the students from this school and to network.

I am excited at seeing how far these aspirations take me. If anything maybe New York will provide more opportunities for me to explore and which I can take back home with me to San Antonio or just maybe things will work out for me to be able to achieve my goals in the largest market in the world. Dreams come true and I still believe in mine.

You know you have to laugh at the situations in life to continue to make sense of what cards have been dealt to you. After the facebook lashing went on with the actors who felt the need to comment on my free speech one of them, who I consider a friend, despite what transpired, instant messaged me and said, “ I’m going to hell.” I responded by saying “At least I will be in good company.” Ain't that the truth?

I have Gia Carangi’s quote posted on my facebook profile and that mirrors the many obstacles in my life which continue to help define the actions which shape my life.
“Life and Death, Energy and Peace….It was worth it being allowed to where I walked which is Heaven on Earth, Hell on Earth, Back Again, Far, Into, Through it, and Above.”

Amen Sister!

Friday, November 27, 2009

A Note of Thanks!

This is a day where we look back and remember what we are thankful for and I have alot which comes to mind. First and foremost to have all of my immediate family still here by my side healthy and celebrating another thanksgiving with food, quality time, and good times.

As for my friends, we may not all be in the same city but you are in my heart every day and with the holiday nearing I know we will get to make up for lost time. For the ones who are newly acquainted and or local I am thankful to have found you in my life.

Professionally I could write a book on how much there is to be thankful for however this year along there is much to remember and thank including all of the continued support in all of our film projects and our work, for a great film partner, for a great audience who continues to support our local screenings and cheer us on as we go international and into other markets with our work, to those that have guided us from day one and never left our side, and to our fellow brothers and sisters in the industry who continue to pave the way with there passion and hard work, and to our amazing city of San Antonio, our back drop and best supporter of all.

To all of my FB friends who provide an excellent source of dialogue and even support as life happens all around us. Hope you all enjoy your day weather you are kicking back or working hard at what you do I am truly thankful for you in my life!

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

When I wake and Before I Dream....

It’s all simple enough right? We wake up. We go to sleep. In between we occupy our time usually working, providing for ourselves, spend time with co workers, colleagues, if we are lucky maybe family and or a significant other. Some of us may even dare to pursue our hopes and dreams and hopefully feed our soul as much as our bodies. A lot of time is spent driving from point A to point B, but what happens when you wake up one morning and it just doesn’t seem that easy anymore? I think that happened to me a few months back and I can not exactly pin point the day to be exact but it was almost as if I was emotionally paralyzed and anything beyond Waking up and going to sleep seemed like climbing Mount Everest.

Going back a bit to this time last year everything seemed to be falling into place like I had hoped. Professionally I could not ask for a better progression in my career and with those whom I worked with. Every film we worked hard on seemed to be well received either through winning film festivals to screening at Cannes and planning the next big step which is selling and distributing our feature.

Doors just kept opening up left and right and opportunities that were bigger than I had ever imagined seemed to present themselves. It was not just about me. It was trying to provide the actors who I had believed in with great representation and making sure they were taken care of, standing by my colleagues as we worked hard to pass our film incentive, promoting our films to larger markets than ever before, and on top of all that taking on producing a film festival that had provided me with many opportunities which I wanted to be bigger than ever before. As far as I was concerned as long as I had a bit of energy I was positive all of the above would flourish as long as I put my heart and soul into every project.

From March until the end of the summer it all seemed like one blur of details, mixers, preparations, submissions, business trips, festivals, etc. I had a lot of great people I could count on and work on with and with that being said everything seemed to go as planned. Overnight though I felt as if the rug was pulled right from underneath me. Although this blow at first seemed easy enough to brush off and move on I did not realize until much later that this action would go on to build up internally like a laceration which kept bleeding all summer.

It’s interesting the people that can come into your life when you’re not looking that can be a bit of sunshine in an otherwise overcast season. I am a big sucker for liking the “first” moments when this rare occasion occurs. The first smile, the first smirk, the first joke, first date, first surprise, first well you get the picture. Most important when this happens you think…Could this be real? So you dip your toe into the water and like the way it feels and the way it makes you smile in the morning, the way it gets you excited about something aside from the above goals outlined earlier in the year. Call me old fashioned but I love to court. Its not a matter of giving a flower, a gift, a surprise, but making someone else’s day and making them feel a fraction as special as there attention and attraction makes you feel.

Having to put that off to the side and let it marinate and see what would come of it I dove into what would be the center of the whole year for me. There was a lot that occurred mostly positive at first. I was glad that so much positive energy came from this event that that the numbers had nearly doubled and everyone was off and running for a memorable weekend. The week that followed seemed to be one detail after another, but the work itself was not the challenge the real one came much later.

I thought from the outside look in all went well. That that did not go well I thought was handled with dignity and tact and everything else that was a complaint was never said to my face and I knew no matter the outcome the highest trees get the wind and locally I was sure that would be placed on me. It wasn’t that it was much more though….

I have always been aware of my surroundings and have a great judge of character. In fact, within a minute or two I can tell if a person is being honest, or real, and trust worthy with me. Being able to switch hats on and off from colleague to friend producer to agent to supervisor is no problem at all. However when those whose opinions you value and see eye to eye with seem to take a low road it can be disheartening to be around. More so it can be very cold in an otherwise hot environment when you feel as if despite all you did to provide opportunities and all the effort you put into an event does not matter when egos are bruised.

I was able to roll with the punches despite the cold shoulders and negative energy in my direction then one morning it was just as I had mentioned. I woke up and I could not function. Emails and Phone calls would send me in a state of panic. Days seemed to go by before my eyes. Everything that I had worked so hard for seemed to be put on hold indefinitely. I did not know what had happened. The idea of even doing simple tasks seemed to put a ton of pressure on my chest and made breathing and concentrating seem like sprinting for hours on end in freezing temperatures.

It took a lot of deep thought and self analyzing to try and figure out how this happened in the first place and more importantly how to get out of whatever type of mental meltdown this was so I could go back to doing what brought me the biggest joy,,, my work. Everyday I was mentally paralyzed I felt my reputation was being tarnished and my plans which I had set in motion were going stagnant.

Thank god for my family for just letting me be a bump on a log and figure this out for myself. Of course they were there when I needed someone to talk to but I am normally someone who gets stir crazy when I have more than a day or two to myself.

What about my friends?

That’s a good question. The ones I have are great! A lot are no longer here in Texas which I give them kudos for going for the dreams and succeeding at it. The ones I have here though well it gets even more complicated.

It’s hard for me not to be a good friend….but sometimes its bad for me to be friends with people who take and never give back. I even think its far better to know who is not your friend then who your friends are. If you think about it and name a few friends you have off the top of your head those are the people who I am sure are there when you need someone to talk to, who like you for who you are not what you do, and are there for you through the thick and thin. A quote by Marilyn Monroe resonated with me around this time which is “If you can’t handle me at my worst, than you do not deserve me at my best.” I consistently have to re-evaluate my friends unfortunately but fortunately enough it is good to know who these people are. I did make huge adjustments to no longer have any pillars in my life. I need to be sure that despite where I am at in my life I can always stand on my own two feet and not need to worry about whom will catch me if I fall metaphorically again.

Despite this I was able to be open to chase after that little bit of sunshine which came around unexpectedly earlier in the summer. However chasing is what ended up being the problem. I must be too old fashioned or too Aries for my own good but I will go along for a ride if I think it will lead to something promising in the end. Long story short, after a few dates and a lot of disappointments I took a hint and continued down my single road. This really isn’t a bad place to be right now especially around the holidays.

I do not know when it came full circle but I am glad that my goals and ambitions are even bigger than they were this time last year. The rest of my 09 will be focused on wrapping up what was put on hold to make room for what 2010 has in store.

I do not believe in looking back but I needed to move on from this year which although may have taken me to places which were unpleasant to visit helped me shift to a place that is more honest and is more real. My optimism is not diminished in the least in every aspect in my life. I never fully close a door just wise up when opportunity comes knocking which I am sure it will continue to.

I do not regret any action I have taken or will continue to take down this road in life I just look forward to the journey between the time I wake up and go to sleep at night.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Picking Up Where I Left Off...

The last blog entry I made was on my myspace blog, and I am sure like many of us our myspaces are defunct or like me where I check it once every two weeks if that. Infact I only logged on to see when my last blog was. I spent litterally about fifteen minutes starting at my screen deciding what my title should be. Simple enough right? It should be about who you are and or what your blog is going to be about. My blog is about my life and those whom I encounter and the adventures that go on day to day. I would venture to say that my life is pretty normal however the people I surround myself are not exactly normal and especilly the type of work I do is far from normal but I would not have it any other way. Sometimes though when you keep your head down and work for a long period of time you forget about who you are. I think we should all be able to say " I am....." When I tried to do a one sentence summary of who I was it took a while and then I wondered why that was.

I dont think the answer is going to come over night.

I am looking forward to working out. Maybe some endorphines will excite some creativity and some more organization with my thoughts.

I needed to at least post something tonight to say I did it. Maybe a little bit every so often in the blog world is just what I need. After all we are our own works in progress.