December 2018

I’ve been busy lately. The creative work got pushed to the back burner for a while.  However, I completed and sent out two new stories in the last couple of months. So that’s progress. I received good news regarding a reprint of a story. Plus, an editor has asked me to rewrite a story that he liked but found some difficulty with, so I’m hoping I ultimately sell that. I’m pleased to hear from a Canadian magazine that my story is in the last selection round there. Crossing my fingers because if I get into that magazine, it’s a new one to me and very well distributed.  December 9th – I had another ‘2nd round’ email which makes me very happy as this one was for a prestigious USA magazine!

This morning I received my contract for the poem “Dangerous Gods” to be published in Polar Borealis #8 this month. So I’m excited about that.

Also, it’s the holiday season and I’ll take some time off my day job to work on creative endeavors.

Buy my Story for the Holidays!

News: At last, the new story is out and available in print:

The Vancouver Sci-Fi Anthology

This features my story “Night Market” as well as the stories of Rob Boffard, Holly Schofield, Nicholas Jennings, David Wright, Elisha Betts and Alban Goulden. This was edited by up and coming SF/F editor Ellen Michelle. The front cover art which is terrific is by Elisha Betts.

Polar Borealis Magazine Get My Story Free

POLAR BOREALIS Magazine #2 is finally published and available for free download to anyone who wants to read it. It contains the following goodies:

  • Stories by Stan G. Hyde, Ron Friedman, Steve Fahnestalk, Michael John Bertrand, Holly Schofield, David Perlmutter, R. Graeme Cameron, Catherine Girczyc, Dave Duncan, Nina Munteanu, Matthew Hughes, and Spider Robinson.
  • Cover art by Eric Chu.
  • Poems by Colleen Anderson, Rissa Johnson, Mary Choo, Eileen Kernaghan, Rhea Rose, and J.Y.T. Kennedy.

Just go to http://polarborealis.ca and click on “Current/Back Issues” in the header, then scroll a short distance down to the link.

Cover art by Eric Chu

title page

 

How to get into TV & Film in Canada

Jwithpuppetback

  • My advice is twofold:

1.  Look for a day job in film.

Anyone interested in film and TV should work in it even for a short time – in any capacity!  Look for ways to get onto a film union list, starting as a PA maybe even? There are many jobs, too, not all of them on shoots.  This  includes the behind-the-scenes stuff or animation, distribution, etcetera.  That way you really get a feel for your field & make contacts.  I’m not a hugely successful TV writer, but I’ve sold over 15 scripts and all of them due to personal contacts – not the 2 agents (!).

2.  Sell what scripts you have in the best way possible.  I often use a real estate metaphor, because it is the same, believe it or not.  As I learned the hard way, a local agent here like Integral or Characters won’t ‘sell’ your big script or new TV series idea.  They’ll offer the ‘houses’ they have at their level – think Surrey.  If you have a Shaughnessy mansion of a script, go to an LA agent.  Many of them will look at new stuff from young writers. I will say that even a Vancouver agent would be good to start your talks with any producer though.

In this light, check out the Writers Guild of Canada. You can’t join until you have a credit, but they sometimes have open events and checking the website for good materials and references is good. WGC is the Canadian version of the WGA, in fact we have sharing $$ agreements with them.

So, for example, if you are ready to look for an agent, look at the public list on the WGC site: http://www.wgc.ca/resources/agents.html

It’s usually possible to meet with Canadian agents if you have a project.  I’m currently not agented, due to the fact that I had to turn down the last 3 offers in a row (for bad reality shows that pay poorly).

All my work’s sold solely due to industry contacts but having an agent may have gotten me ‘in the door’.  I have had 2 agents, both Canadian and neither earned me a cent I didn’t find myself.  However, if you have a fantastic script, ready to go, for a movie, for example, you should try to get an agent to help you sell it.

I usually write TV episodes, so my work’s differently focused. If it’s a huge script – the Hollywood style ones have to be agented in the USA – our agents just don’t have the contacts to sell huge scripts.  Check out the Hollywood Screenwriting Directory for ‘who to send it to’. https://www.writersstore.com/hollywood-screenwriting-directory  It costs $29 US but is worth it.

Links:

TO film list – good for applying to current films. These are often updated: https://www1.toronto.ca/static_files/economic_development_and_culture/docs/currently_filming.pdf

BC file list – from the DGC site

https://www.dgc.ca/bc/production_list/Production%20List.pdf

Unions to check out:

Vancouver: ACFC is the easiest to get into. They don’t have ‘all’ the productions but they usually have something and are more willing to train.  See http://www.acfcwest.com/become.html

ACFC also has a list of great links for beginners in film: http://www.acfcwest.com/industry.html  They have a Production Office area and it’s good if he wants to get some local experience.  Pay rates are lower than IATSE and hours sometimes longer but it’s a way in. Most ACFC members eventually join IATSE.

IATSE:  This I’d recommend only if he’s going the ‘office’ route first.  https://www.iatse.com/ Local 891 is Vancouver.  It’s more or less a route to get into an office and see production and work from there.

DGC: This is where locations starts, also directors.  But I never have seen Locations lead to writing gigs, they’re too far from the office and the writers.  If directing is your interest, though, it’s good.  They have offices in Vancouver and TO.

http://www.dgc.ca/en/index.cfm

The TV and film world can look like a jungle, but I’ve had some great experiences and earned a lot out there at times!

Cat

p.s. Below is from http://thecollectortv.com/36.html  and is the listing for 1 of my Collector tv series episodes.  Producers: Larry Sugar, Showrunners: Jon Cooksey and Ali Marie Matheson. The Collector is a wonderful show – a dark fantasy & I thoroughly enjoyed writing two episodes for it!

Collector website Ufologist

December 18, 2015

Enjoying my WOTF badges! It helps me to feel like a creative writer when Corporate Job makes me feel like a technical person.

Plans for the Christmas break include trying to get back into my novel and also writing a pitch up for the Women In Film Horror script contest More on that at: Women in Film (Canada) genre writing contest.

HONORABLE MENTION

What we do instead of writing….

There are writers who produce 12 books a year. The rest of us have developed various stratagem to avoid writer’s cramp.
This weekend I’m at VCon 38 in the quite decent, clean, good- natured, and very understanding Delta airport hotel in Richmond BC.
It can be argued that it’s a useful thing to come and sup with friends of like mind; all of whom know what a Bjoran ear cuff is, or who wrote SandKings, and why we weren’t surprised at the success of Game of Thrones.
I listened to some new authors read from their works. Due to this con, I now know who Mur Lafferty is and will be picking up her book – The Shambling Guide To New York – which sounds very amusing.
I supported other artists by buying handmade jewelry and- fabulous stone coasters with Buck Rogers space ships painted on them!
I have wish lists of art I can’t buy yet – love Lynne Taylor Fahnestalk’s metal sculptures – my fav is Benny!
Also child purchased excellent crocheted Koshi Stuffy by Cat.

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