notjustpretending

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Its been a while…

In Uncategorized on April 4, 2011 at 10:49 am

Whenever I’m actually studying, things like this tend to take a back seat. I’ve never had much staying power with keeping a diary either – I tend to find that if I’m busy living life, I don’t have time to write about it.

I have, however, still had many daydreams about the possible ways my career could go. At the moment, its actually looking pretty positive! I now have an agent, so moving to London definitely seems like the best bet. I have someone I can live with, and have been looking into various paying the rent type jobs to go alongside acting. And I have what might be a promising drama related job opportunity! Life is looking like things may actuallly turn out the way I want them to.

Here’s hoping this won’t be too jeopardised by the arts cuts and the changes to DLA. More on my fears of that at a later date.

My Friend the Casting Director

In Uncategorized on August 7, 2010 at 11:06 am

I am very lucky in terms of contacts. The friend in question is someone I have known since I was about 10 years old, and like me, is about to go into her third year. I am staying with her and her twin sister for the weekend, and I have learnt SO much about that side of the industry since then. Plus she says she is happy for me to email her begging for advice. Also, hopefully she will remember if she is casting for disabled roles. It is very exciting, and I want more than ever to just graduate already and start putting the first of my many plans into practice.

Plan C

In Uncategorized on August 5, 2010 at 10:30 am

(Or possibly the second part of plan B, depending on how plan B turns out)

Move home. Join an Extras agency. Use the Arts Council Website, to find acting related jobs in my area. Hope my parents will let me live at home rent free, so can afford to take acting jobs that don’t pay, but might get seen by the right people. Hopefully get a fair amount of extras work so can start saving, although what I’m saving for, I’m not quite sure yet. Use my inheritance money to take a course in British Sign Language(if I’m going to get into the disabled side of theatre, would be a useful asset) Hopefully get an agent and some paid local acting work. Get a fairly long running acting job, in order to move out. In this particular plan, I hope to only be living at home for a further year.

Plan B

In Uncategorized on August 2, 2010 at 3:00 pm

In the month and a half after I graduate, where I still I have a house where I’m studying, I will do open spot nights in many comedy clubs in London, as the commute is shorter and cheaper than my “home home”. I will also use the facilities of my drama school that are still useable by graduates up to a year after they leave to create what will be an award-winning show at Edinburgh Fringel. I will fund this with left-over student loan, and £500 inheritance money. After winning all those awards, we shall be offered a contract with BBC3 and win a Bafta for our amazing comedy.

Now, I’m aware much of this seems very unrealistic, especially as a second choice. It is Plan B, because I prefer acting to stand-up, and at least some parts of this plan(open spot nights, and taking a show to Edinburgh Fringe) would be doable. However, if there isn’t much success I will have no money and no plans once August is over neccessating a Plan C.

Mini-Rant

In Uncategorized on August 1, 2010 at 7:40 pm

This is completley unrelated to anything I have written about previously. It is a reaction to an article in The Observer New Review.

There was an article about “confessional” women writers. The women are representing the next step on from Candace Bushnell and Sex and The City.  I was happily reading said article, when I come across one “confessionista” who says “Has anyone noticed that Jane Austen just changed the names of the characters in Emma to come up with Sense and Sensibility”

NO. I have not noticed that.BECAUSE IT IS NOT TRUE. Emma is the only Austen protaganist for whom marrying money is not an issue. She will inherit her fathers estate. She is rich, and therefore can afford, and does, live in a fantasy world, to the negative impact on many of her friends. She eventually falls in love with Mr Knightly, a friend of her fathers, but it takes until the end of the book for her to realise she loves him. Up to that point, the book is a witty farce and a commentary on social mobility in the Regency Era.

Sense and Sensibility is a story of a family tossed out on their ear, because a son is more entitled to his father’s inheritance than his wife and daughters(son being born of a previous marriage) The son’s wife manipulates him so that the wife and daughters are left with very little and move to a cottage by the sea.(The fact that for an Austen character, only having a few servants means poverty, is neither here nor there) The older sister, Elinor, is in love with her brother’s wife’s brother(not as incestuous as it sounds) and has her heart quietly broken, but later healed. She represents the sense. The younger sister falls for the dastardly Willoughby, who ditches her for someone richer, and has a dramaticly broken heart, later fixed by the steady Colonel Brandon who has loved her from afar throughout. The story shows that you need a mixture of sense and sensibility to get through life, plus plenty of commentry on the importance of money in Regency society.

So. Both of these books comment on society in the Regency Era. And they carry Austen’s witty and insightful writing style. The characters are nothing alike. A comparison between Sense and Sensibility and Pride and Prejudice I could understand, although that would demonstrate limited understanding of the books. But Emma and Sense and Sensibility have the same characters? All I can gather from that opinion is that she can’t have read the books.

Plan A

In Uncategorized on July 31, 2010 at 10:00 am

When I perform my showcase I will get an agent. Through that agent I will get auditions, and get my first acting job. Preferably something for at least 3 months so I can afford to rent somewhere in London(or elsewhere, if my job is elsewhere) A job with a repetory company would be perfect. Or a contract with Radio 4 and I can be on The Archers, or do some afternoon plays. But basically anything that means it is worth me renting somewhere, and that breaks me into the industry. Despite this being all I want, it is very unlikely, so I am figuring out a variety of other options.

Planning my Life

In Uncategorized on July 24, 2010 at 3:10 pm

This is my last summer before I graduate, so I am trying to figure out my options for when I do.

First, my dream jobs!

Either working for the RSC or the Globe’s Company(I am a massive Shakespeare Groupie)

or

Becoming the new Doctor Who Assistant, with a wheelchair that flies like the Daleks.

Next Time: Plan A(My preferred and slightly more realistic first plan…)

Money Money Money Part 2

In Uncategorized on July 9, 2010 at 12:17 pm

These things could be taken as advice, but they’re just the things I do to save money.

Firstly – I have a good relationship with my parents! This means I can stay at home and therefore have free food – and alcohol – over the summer, if I’m spending time with them. And enjoy it! We do lovely family things like playing board games 🙂 It also means I get a lovely free holiday to the South of France, with lots of lovely free food and french wine. These aren’t the reasons I have a good relationship with my parents, but I recommend it as a way of saving money. So that covers savings of living costs, and holidays.

Secondly, I am friends with the landlord and family of my local pub. Which means free drinks fairly often when I go there. I also sometimes go with my parents, and they also like to provide me with drinks. Also lots of the old pantomime group I was in go there, and as they are proper grownups(not students) they also buy me drinks. That covers nights out.

I also have various things to do on my own that are a brilliant distraction and cost no money. Firstly, I am a big T.V addict. Buffy re-runs on Sky are a great friend on mine.(Sky also paid for by my parents) Secondly, I own the Sims 2. I recommend this as an investment, as it can while away hours of your time. I combine it by listening to radio shows and plays on iplayer, so I feel like I’m being cultured. Thirdly, I am a book addict. And with lovely weather such as we have, I am happy to spend the days getting a tan in the sunshine. I am a new member of readitswapit.co.uk Which is a book swapping service – a good way to exchange easy reads that you’re not going to return to for other things that make holiday reading. I also have a mother with a similar reading taste, which makes it even easier to spend lots of time reading, and run out of no money doing it.

I am also going to avail myself of “A Night Less Ordinary” which provides free theatre tickets to those between 18-26  – especially as by next summer it probably won’t apply! Hopefully I can find some that won’t cost too much in Bristol!

I can also strongly recommend having other friends trying to save money, because collectivley you will think of cheap/free things to do.Like just popping round for a cup of tea and a chat, or finding friends who like to play board games, or going and visiting pretty places in the sunshine. As most of my friends are students, this is  something I should be able to avail myself of!

Today I have visited my friend and her new baby and will be spending the rest of the day unpacking, doing some writing and spending some time with family. And possibly sunbathing with a book. All free and all fun! 🙂 I am recession ready!

Money Money Money

In Uncategorized on July 8, 2010 at 9:49 pm

As an aspiring actor, it shouldn’t surprise you that money is something often on my mind. Add to that I’m a student, its a recession, and as my disability affects my mobility the usual part time work actors have(bar, waitressing) means that ways of making, and of saving it, are big considerations of mine.

Last night I watched Moneywatch(BBC2) Very informative in terms of ways to make extra cash – the odd thing I didn’t quite understand, but there are some which I think might come in useful. Such as taking part in competitions that you can win money off – the more you do, the more you win. I am on summer holidays now, so can spend plenty of time trying to get some free stuff. The other thing suggested is to take in people’s ironing. So I plan to improve my ironing skills this summer, so it’ll be something I can offer.

My current summer job is babysitting for a few different families. My “home home”(as in not at drama school home) is in a village with quite a close community, so I’ve managed to get a fair amount of work by word of mouth. Being part of a church where there are children is very useful for this one! However, this is my last summer until I graduate, and although I am considering moving back home for a year, I feel if I go back to babysitting then it will feel like a step back. Though any money is money, and no need to worry about that now! Except I do, and that is the topic of this particular blog.

Having realised that this is my last summer holiday – unless I become a teacher – I am trying to use my time productively, in a way that will help in the future.

The first of these plans is to attempt stand-up. We had some lessons in this as part of our comedy module, and our teacher sold this as a career. Its self-employed, so flexible, it leads to plenty of other opportunities, and you can take the complete credit for any performance you do.  His lessons, and his book, makes it all seem very easy to do. So I am trying to spend at least an hour a day on writing, and will be trying out some open mike nights from next week – hopefully. If I’m good at it, and it doesn’t make me feel sick(as it does to lots of other people who tried it) then I can use this summer to get practice, and get myself known. And if I’m lucky, make some money.  My plan B for when I graduate(plan A being offered some amazing lucrative job. Or any vaguely related to performing job) is to move back home, and focus on stand-up for a while. So this summer’s a tester run. In case I need a plan C.

The second of these plans is to make myself known to local theatre companies, small theatres, music centres and the like.  Possibly do some volunteering, be polite and charming, so next year, when I move home due to the lack of job offerings, there might be a couple of things that could pay my way. At least for a little while.

So thats my summer. Other than resting, I will be making actual money, getting experience and making contacts. Writing it all down makes me seem much more together than I appear in person. Ah well.

Tomorrow, I’ll be sharing my money saving choices for this summer! Fun fun fun!

Anti-Depressants mean No Jury Duty

In Uncategorized on July 5, 2010 at 4:35 pm

Yesterday, we had a lunch to celebrate my mum’s ordination at our village hall. My godmother, who has severe depression, was there and was questioning my dad, on the above subject.  She recently was called up for jury duty, and had to fill in a form. She said that she took anti-depressents, and they told her she WAS NOT ELIGIBLE. 

Firstly, this is a huge discrimination against people with mental illness(along the lines of the whole lunatics can’t vote thing) 

And secondly, I for one am a hell of a lot saner on anti-depressents than I was prior to them. So the whole system is illogical to boot. 

I googled to find out why and the people who can’t serve on a jury are:

  •  Anyone on bail or that has previous convictions or has served a prison sentence.

 

  • If you are currently or have in the past suffered from a mental health problem. This includes if you are in a hospital, visit a doctor for treatment regularly, or you are in guardianship under section 7 of the Mental Health Act 1983

 

In the past.  So you have recovered from mental illness – which is possible, and very common with things like depression – but you are not allowed to serve on a jury.

To illustrate how stupid this is, I will tell you about my mother. Who has just been ordained and will have to look after people’s welfare etc…and has a history of depression with psychosis.

She can be a priest, but she can’t serve on a jury?!

I am off to make a request for this law to be repealed.