things are looking up …

27, September 2009

Right, so it’s a bit of laundry list but bear with me …

TJ’s new job

TJ has scored a new job in a newly set up development unit at BBC Wordwide. That’s right, she is now officially working for the government. I expect it won’t be long before she’s doing a 38 hour week, counting down the days til her long service leave and working in an office with a “please don’t abuse our staff” sign on the door!

Seriously though, she’s very excited about the job and it means that for the next twelve months we have some security. She had a great time heading up development in the digital unit at Fremantlemedia but we always said that coming to London was about taking advantage of opportunities that we couldn’t get back in Australia and this is the perfect example of one such opportunity.

little luxuries

As a result of TJ’s good fortune we can finally lash out on some little luxuries – temporary blinds from BlindInABox (it’s been probably ten years since we’ve slept in complete dark and God we’ve missed it); a multi-region DVD player courtesy of eBay (the Love Films subscription comes next); plus a casserole dish and stainless wok for some slow cooked wintery meals. It may not sound earth shattering but trust me these little things will make a big difference in our life.

writing

I’ve recently found a second writer’s group called Script Tank and it’s exactly the kind of group I’ve been looking for. It compliments The London Comedy Writers group perfectly as it is more focused on theatre, feature film and TV drama and has a strong membership base of professional and semi-pro writers, such as myself.

On the writing front I’m still working up some short material as well as several TV pilot scripts. When these scripts are ready I’ll have them read and critiqued at both these groups to help in my redrafting and polishing process. Getting a decent reading is vital – it allows you to hear now a script really sounds and to figure out what’s working and what isn’t. At the moment I’m confident that I should be well on the way to hitting my goal of completing three new original pieces of work this year.

work

Coming off the back of working on Freak, I recently took on a small paid gig Production Managing a short film (Unrequited Love) for writer/director Jade Syed-Bokhari of White Fire Films. We shot out at Black Park (near Pinewood Studios) under a beautiful old oak tree with Max Irons (Jeremy Irons son) on what turned out to be a perfect day. Sounds impressive? Well let me assure you filmmaking isn’t all glamour, a big part of my day was spent at the end of a pole waving a branch to create picturesque shadows in shot.

It turned out to be a great experience as I got to apply my eight odd years of experience to the job and got to draw on some people and resources that I acquired from working on Freak, which meant that things ran smoothly and we got everything in the can in under ten hours.

networking

Over the past couple of months I’ve been to several film and TV networking nights – there’s always something desperate and dateless about these events. Two thirds of the people are guarantee to be actors and composers while the other third is likely to be people looking to meet someone who can give them a gig. So it’s a lot of people all looking from the same thing … from each other! Not the best recipe for success. Despite this, I have to say though that I did meet some interesting people who hopefully I can keep in touch with and work with at a later date.

moving forward

I’m now hoping to take on some more paid short film production managing/producing gigs to get some money in and also to keep building my network. The more gigs like this I do the more I will learn and the larger my network will grow – which can only be a good thing, both in terms of leading to some full-time paid work and also when I’m ready to start shooting some of my own material. That’s the plan anyway, Ill let you know how I go.

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3 Responses to “things are looking up …”

  1. tj Says:

    That’s 35 hours a week – UK law has to fall under EU regulations that BBC have to abide by. I usually work that in four days a week, so expect me to start having flexi Mondays.

  2. Lorraine Says:

    Dear Brett and TJ,

    Great to keep up with what you are doing. Now there is more “doing”, I expect you will be feeling a little more comfortable over there.

    Just thought I’d tell you we are having record rainfall, flooding and wash-aways. All this at the end of three years of severe drought. We have to go under the house to dig out the earth falls and make trenches so the water can get away. There is a ravine at the entrance to our driveway and the neighbours two doors up the hill have decided to put in a drain that spills water into next door which in turn has created a river through our back yard. I have lost at least 10 of my drought tolerant plants and I’m scared I’ll be losing my beautiful greengage. Compared with your news, rather domestic really.

    So, to change the subject. Yesterday, I handed in one of my paintings to the special exhibition to be held during the month of October by the Art Society of Tasmania.

    To get into this exhibition the paintings are put before a panel of judges before they are hung. As I got in last year with a painting that wasn’t as good as this one, I’m pretty confident mine will be on show during October.

    Ron is busy writing computer programs for the radio station and the aeroclub and his deadline to get everything operating smoothly in the studio is the 4th of October so he is a bit distracted at the moment.

  3. Lesley Says:

    Congratulations to you both – I’m sure this will be the turning point you look back on when you are being interviewed at the height of your careers!!


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