As an actor, there is a lot of downtime. That kind of stuff can get on your tits if you don’t have anything constructive to do with that time. I don’t want to fill my time with something that’s completely useless to me, however, so this is what I’ve done:
Telling of Tales is my weekly audiobook podcast where I read the short fiction I find around the web or that gets submitted to me. Some of the stories are classics, like the recent episode The Selfish Giant by Oscar Wilde. Others are by up-and-coming authors or folk who just enjoy writing and who wrote something that appealed to me in some way.
I’m currently just trying to get the word out, so if you enjoy this sort of thing or know people who might, do check it out. I’m quite proud of some of my most recent recordings and have a really lovely story coming this friday.
On my professional website and my business cards, I call myself an actor, writer and comedian. However, how much am I actually writing? I feel like in order to call oneself a writer, one has to at least make a concerted effort to write pretty regularly. I haven’t necessarily been doing that. Now, I’m by no means the guy who spends more time talking about being a writer than he spends actually writing anything; I have finished a stageplay (good concept, terribly written) and I’ve written a few film scripts, most recently a sci-fi parody, which I’ve finished twice already and will be doing a massive re-write of quite soon. However, to really become a good writer, I need to keep writing.
No, I don’t know why I’m holding a pencil either. Who uses a pencil to write these days?! Hah!
I’m not going to put myself on some strict writing schedule or try to write so-and-so-many words a day, because I’ve tried those kinds of projects in various forms, and they rarely work for me. Specifically for writing, I did about ten days of NaNoWriMo (write a book in a month) years ago. I’d love to do that again and finish this time, but next time I want to have an outline ready for it.
This is the only thing I’m going to say about those who are engaging in the “gun debate” right now. I’ve lived half my life in Kentucky and experienced first-hand the hunting culture there, but I’ve lived the other half in Los Angeles where guns are mostly used to shoot other people. I think the biggest problem that the opposing sides in this debate have is a lack of empathy with the other side’s point of view. The anti-gun people should concede that some guns are useful (for food and sport) and the pro-gun people should admit that we really don’t need semi-automatic weapons available to every wack job on the street. This “they’re taking our guns!!” vs. “Get rid of all the guns!!” mentality isn’t getting us anywhere.
Most responses were in agreement, except one guy whose first line was “Leave my second amendment alone!” I thought he was joking, but he basically turned out to be exactly the kind of guy Kerry was talking about being annoyed with. That dude kept posting similar things for a while. But then there was Bill*. I was so enamoured with Bill’s ability to argue his side without getting insane about it, that I wanted to share it with the world**. What follows after the break is my discussion with him quoted verbatim*** with no further comment. I would love to hear your opinions on this, but please: Extend Bill the same courtesy he did me and be respectful and rational.
In response to this discussion, and because I’m so smart, I came up with a witty, clever slogan that isn’t stupid at all: Be a debater, not a debaser!
WARNING: It’s really long! Like, longer than my essay about Doctor Who. Continue reading →
I’ve been doing push-ups while on holiday back in Norway to keep fit when away from my weights. It’s not easy when the first laboured breath gets my parents’ dog Ronja riled up and ready to munch on face, chest and whatever else she can get a hold of.
The past few days have been great for me in terms of writing. For the first time in a while, I’m constantly getting new ideas and revamping old ones, and themes, character arcs and plot points are slowly but surely being put down in my Moleskine (Yeah, it’s a bit pretentious, but it’s such a nice notebook!).
Right now, I give you the SECOND of the two and a half episodes I originally wrote. Continue reading →
In the summer of 2003, I had a summer job scanning inspection reports on pipes. Yeah, I know. Exciting. So exciting, in fact, that this job that was projected to take me four weeks was over in five days. I still had three weeks left on my contract. What can a man do with his time? I read four Discworld novels, played an old dog-fighting game for DOS, wrote a short crime story with my bosses as the main characters (My immediate boss was the hero-turned-killer), drank an inordinate amount of cocoa, and started work on a comic about how the sun went out and a team had to go out and find new bulbs for it. Silly, I know. Continue reading →
I’m not sure how I feel about this, but I’ve created a Paypal donation button to allow people to donate to me if they would like to. I’ve resisted doing it for a long time, but I figure it can’t hurt.
Basically, I make very very little money right now, and every video I make takes three to six hours and I make maybe a pound off each of them in the long run. At this rate, I need to find some kind of paying work which would ultimately make it difficult for me to keep making videos as a lot of my spare time is used trying to find acting work, trying to finish my university work, etc etc.
I’m thinking I’ll probably do something to honor those who donate, especially those who donate substantial amounts. Maybe I’ll send them little thank-you notes with doodles or something. Or maybe one of my origami things from my videos.
I doubt I’ll actually get much money this way (if any), and certainly not the fifty-sixty quid a video I’d need to justify not taking the first job that comes along. I might as well try, though, and I might get some trickle funding out of it. If I don’t, at least I tried.