Back from the 2016 Edition of the Austin Film Festival

austin-film-festival

I finally made it to the Austin Film Festival and Screenwriters Conference for the first time. And I say, it is worth the trip. Since it was my first time, I didn’t want to shell out nearly $700 for the all encompassing Producer’s Badge which gets you into all panels and parties. I opted for the Lone Star Badge which gave me access to panels on Saturday, three of their parties, and all of the film screenings.¬†For me, that option suited me pretty well. Depending on what you’re looking to get out of the festival, I don’t think you need to buy the Producer’s Badge. The pitch finale party was pretty crowded, and I’ve heard from others that the other parties were crowded as well, prompting some people to leave early.

I attended five back-to-back panels and then the Pitch Finale party on Saturday. Though I didn’t pitch, the most informative sessions for me were listening to the pitches at the pitch sessions and the finale party and getting to hear feedback from the judges. This specifically helped me work on a pitch document I’m polishing up for a TV pilot I’ve written.

If you’re looking to mingle and network, the panels are great for meeting people while you wait for them to begin. (Tip: Bring snacks cause you only have a few minutes between panels.) And The Driskill Hotel is swarming with filmmakers (and a few celebrities) in the evening. This year, they set up a networking lounge. I went there for the free coffee, but also chatted up some folks too.

Until next time, Austin.

 

New Camera, New Hobby

Living Amongst the Dead
Greenwood Cemetery, Brooklyn, NY
Chinese New Year Burn
Chinese New Year, Washington, DC
Chinese New Year
Chinese New Year, Washington, DC
Don't Cry My Child
Library of Congress, Washington, DC
Equal Justice Under Law
US Supreme Court, Washington, DC
Read
Greenwood Cemetery, Brooklyn, NY
Long Gone
Greenwood Cemetery, Brooklyn, NY
The Law and the Enforcer
US Supreme Court, Washington, DC

Goodbye Art Farm

After two months at artist residency Art Farm in Marquette, NE, I said goodbye. I’ll miss the big sky, empty roads, and friendly people, but I won’t miss those killer bugs who chose me as their dinner.

Thank you fellow resident Julie Ann for capturing the essence of Art Farm.

How to Live Longer

stop here

I arrived at my writing residency a little less than 2 weeks ago. That was preceded by a week long road trip from the East coast to the middle of corn country. Even though it’s been less than a month since I left New York, it feels like it’s been more than twice as long.

Living on an old farm offers challenges that I rarely encounter living in cities. Living without air conditioning, not seeing a building more than three stories, remembering to wear bug spray daily, putting buckets under leaks when a thunderstorm or tornado looms, sleeping with only the sound of bugs chirping, asking for help when I don’t know how to use a power saw, depending on other people for transportation.

All of these tasks require me to re-think and re-work my mind and body. I am no longer on auto-pilot. I am more conscious of what I am doing and what I am thinking because everything is new. When I first arrived, I wasn’t sure I would survive two days, let alone two months. The heat was unbearable and my surroundings were so bare bones, I had to put my head down to rest. I gave myself three days to adjust and acclimate before making a judgment on my decision to come here.

We can’t live until we’re two hundred years old (not yet anyway), but we can compound the time that we already have. Say yes to learning. Say yes to adventure. Say yes to challenge.

A Work in Progress