Day 7: Oily Water

Hoosiers know what I’m talking about. The water feels greasy, and I just can’t get used to it. But I’ve accepted it as a fact of life around here. (But the weather/nature is gorgeous!)

Wild day today. Got up at 3:30AM to catch that 6AM flight to Detroit, and then the 10AM to Indy. By the time I got to Indiana, I was in that dreamy state where I was too tired to do anything but also too numb to feel that fatigue.

Still, it was worth it, just to see the fam. And my lovely little brother, Sir Terry Tarragorn, son of Terrathorn, Heir of Isilterr, Lord of Dogs, and Prince of Potatoes:

Have another pic for readability reasons. I had loads of delish Korean food and even a pack of Shin Ramyun, but I forgot to take photos in my strange, hazy state of half-being. So here’s some LaCroix instead:

Today, in and out of the airport (and only half-asleep), I managed to:

  • Read 20 pages of Save the Cat. I am now on the chapter about the Board.
  • Find out how to sync Final Draft saves onto Google Drive
  • Break down + schedule Production Manager tasks for Flames of Fury for the week. Gotta finish all my breakdowns by the production team meeting on June 4th – and also (hopefully) find a Production Designer.
  • Write this blog post. It’s been 7 days since I started the blog, so huzzah to me for keeping it up this long.

Looking forward to tomorrow. Not so much for the inevitable weight gain (Korean carbs = best), but can’t wait to check out Kohl’s. We’ll see if it’s as cheap and amazing as my sister claims.

No Voltaren today. Bengay seems to be the gel of choice around here.

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Extra Notes:

Being a freelance writer/editor, I also teach with VIPKID for $$$. If you’d like to try teaching little kids in China between the hours of 4AM-10AM EST for about $18USD/hour, you can try VIPKID for yourself with the code/link below.

My VIPKID referral link:  https://t.vipkid.com.cn/activity/popup?refereeId=8544316&refersourceid=a01

My VIPKID referral code: 0534U4

Do check out the positives and negatives for yourselves (or just search them up on Reddit).

Day 6: Breaking Bad

A prep day, of sorts. I will be flying out to Indiana tomorrow (today?) at 3AM, so I had to get organized and could not get much writing or film stuff done.

Also, my “I’m eating carbs soon” mentality got me and I broke keto early. But I’ve also been craving (sugary) chocolate for a while, now, so the break was a surprise to be sure, but a welcome one.

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I’m proud to say that I’ve gotten a few things done anyway.

But first things first – check out this amazing chocolate tart + brownie samples I got from Brioche Dorée by Finch Station:

Also, the honey garlic chicken + Shanghai noodles + eggplants from Szechuan Express in Eaton Center. I’ll take great eggplants over meat, any day:

And Starbucks. Cold Foam Cascara Cold Brew or something like that, I think? I had a free reward, and this was my carb-ier coffee choice of the day:

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Today, I managed to:

  • Attend a pre-production meeting with the production team for Flames of Fury (Exciting! And now I have lots to do in Indiana. That’s a good thing!)
  • Buy a roller carry-on luggage case (there’s a sale at Bentley’s, y’all!)
  • Pack everything for the early morning flight to Indiana
  • Clean the house + do my weekly laundry
  • Organize my Google Drive (uploading + organizing pics from my phone, mostly)

Wow. The day sounded so much more productive in my head.

The good news is that I will have tons of time to get things done before and between flights tomorrow (today?). So I should be able to make up for the progress not made today (yesterday?).

Or perhaps I should be kinder to myself and say that less productive days are okay, given the circumstances. Yes, I think I’ll do that instead.

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Extra Notes:

Being a freelance writer/editor, I also teach with VIPKID for $$$. If you’d like to try teaching little kids in China between the hours of 4AM-10AM EST for about $18USD/hour, you can try VIPKID for yourself with the code/link below.

My VIPKID referral link:  https://t.vipkid.com.cn/activity/popup?refereeId=8544316&refersourceid=a01

My VIPKID referral code: 0534U4

Do check out the positives and negatives for yourselves (or just search them up on Reddit).

Day 5: Dead(pool)

Voltaren is a double-edged sword, if that sword had no edges and was, in fact, an anti-inflammatory relieving gel. On the one hand, it convinced me that my neck might be okay after all. On the other hand, it made me forget that I was supposed to be careful about my neck (i.e avoid sitting for too long)(i.e. not watch a 2-hour movie).

Yes, I went to see Deadpool 2, for the Tuesday discounts. Lots of fun, diversity, and refreshing material. It also ate up 2 hours of my time. Not a fair assessment to make, I suppose, given how much I enjoyed it. But then again, my workload also increased dramatically today.

Couldn’t do much about my productivity. I took that nap again (because neck pain). Got up at 5PM. Had little time left to do anything before the 7:20PM showing. Still, scrambled to get something done. So huzzah for that.

As always, have a readability pic. Today’s special: Korean pork belly (삼겹살) and kimchi!

Today, in the span of about 2 hours, I managed to:

  • Sign up for LIFT workshops (after 7 failed calls between 10-11am)
  • Experiment with Final Draft to get a hang of its features (so convenient!)
  • Download the script + reports for the upcoming project by Gloria Yazdani, Flames of Fury. I am the Production Coordinator. Will hopefully get through some of them before the meeting tomorrow.
  • Squeeze in a 20-minute HIIT session. Not sure if the exercise is improving or worsening the neck/back situation. Will have to see.

Had to push back my daily 20-page reading of Save the Cat for tomorrow. A disappointment, given that there’s so much to do tomorrow already. But I’m too tired and in too much pain to do anything about that now.

Quite a financial strain I’m going through. I still need green-patch working boots to even apply for a script supervisor permit with IATSE. I will also need a roller carry-on bag for the plane so that I don’t strain my neck and back further (I will be visiting family in Indiana on the 24th). But what am I to do? (Work more, sleep less, duh.)

More Voltaren it is.

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Extra Notes:

Being a freelance writer/editor, I also teach with VIPKID for $$$. If you’d like to try teaching little kids in China between the hours of 4AM-10AM EST for about $18USD/hour, you can try VIPKID for yourself with the code/link below.

My VIPKID referral link:  https://t.vipkid.com.cn/activity/popup?refereeId=8544316&refersourceid=a01

My VIPKID referral code: 0534U4

Do check out the positives and negatives for yourselves (or just search them up on Reddit).

Day 4: Late into the Night

Another day of spectacularly late productivity.

I woke up at 8PM. My neck pain got the best of me, so I lay flat and fell asleep at 2PM. Naturally, I woke up at around 9PM (read: woke up at 7PM >>> Reddited for about 1.5 hours >>> Skyped my fam for 0.5 hours).

I could have gone back to sleep (I teach at 4am). But then I got up anyway, for the blog. How hard could it be to write a few lines?

Pretty hard, as it turned out. You know, because the thing about a productivity blog is that you gotta do something productive first.

So I told myself I’d just do my 20 pages of Save the Cat readings, but that led to one thing and the next, and I ended up finishing many things I had to do today. Exciting! But also painful (for my neck).

As always, have a picture for readability. Behold my 9PM snack (dinner?) of cheese and coffee:

Today (yesterday?), between the hours of 10PM and 12AM, I managed to:

  • Turn down signing an NDA with a company looking for screenwriters (Reddit advised against NDAs with non-compete clauses if you’re a n00b)
  • Read 20 pages of Save the Cat (will I ever start writing?)
  • Download Final Draft 10 (at LAST!)
  • Delay storyboarding my short film. Will script the thing out in Final Draft first.
  • Check out which summer LIFT workshops to sign up for. Registration begins at 10AM. (Intro, Camera Theory, Advanced Script Writing – see y’all there?)
  • Apply for a few screenwriting/script supervision/admin positions through Mandy and Indeed
  • Pay back my credit card balance with debit. (Note to self: Make more money)
  • Get in touch with someone whose company is looking for indie genre scripts! I will be writing up a script (blazingly fast…!) over the next 2-3 days.

The lesson of the day: I need to stop taking naps. Will resort to applying generous doses of Voltaren instead, as I do when it gets busy. The only problem is that I’m never not busy.

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  • Are you a screenwriter? Leave your best career tips below for me fellow screenwriters!
  • Are you a neuropathic surgeon? Leave a note on how to alleviate neck pain!
  • Are you both a screenwriter and a neuropathic specialist? Tell us what it’s like to spearhead the evolution of humankind!

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Extra Notes:

Being a freelance writer/editor, I also teach with VIPKID for $$$. If you’d like to try teaching little kids in China between the hours of 4AM-10AM EST for about $18USD/hour, you can try VIPKID for yourself with the code/link below.

My VIPKID referral link:  https://t.vipkid.com.cn/activity/popup?refereeId=8544316&refersourceid=a01

My VIPKID referral code: 0534U4

Do check out the positives and negatives for yourselves (or just search them up on Reddit).

Day 3: Neck Pain Worsens

My chronic neck pain is steadily getting worse. Sitting down is the worst, but now I’m too tired to search up deals for standing desks.

Today, I began work late – 8PM-ish. Back in the day (read: 3 days ago) I might have called it a day and hit the hay (my VIPKID shifts start at 4AM). But not today. Not when I have a blog to report to, and much work to be done. So hurray for the blog!

Have a picture of the things I ate today for readability reasons. Back on regular keto fare and HIIT:

Today at the Bathurst Starbucks between 8PM-10PM, I managed to:

  • Make notes on Chapter 3 of Save the Cat
  • Hammer out a storyline for an upcoming YouTube short (“Never Skip Heart Day”)
  • Send my sister money, so she can get Final Draft with that sweet 50% student discount ($150-ish?)
  • Find resources recommended from the LIFT Script Coordination workshop (big thanks to Ryan Spencer!)
  • Look over the logline of my web/TV series. Tried to detach any personal feelings from the series and things went better. We’ve gone from “insecure store clerk finds money for insecure cop” to “manic-depressive store clerk outwits psychopathic cop(‘s blackmail)”. You know, so we’re still on that cop-lawyer-doc track but now it’s less boring. (Now, to add some sci-fi and we’ll hit the Canadian production bingo!)

The lesson of the story: You can always get work done. 5 hours or 5 minutes – doesn’t really matter. Doing something > doing nothing. Every time.

I’m so tired I forgot to be funny and cut for conciseness instead. Like I said, I’m also a copywriter! (But no SEO, smh. Too tired.)

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Extra Notes:

Being a freelance writer/editor, I also teach with VIPKID for $$$. If you’d like to try teaching little kids in China between the hours of 4AM-10AM EST for about $18USD/hour, you can try VIPKID for yourself with the code/link below.

My VIPKID referral link:  https://t.vipkid.com.cn/activity/popup?refereeId=8544316&refersourceid=a01

My VIPKID referral code: 0534U4

Do check out the positives and negatives for yourselves (or just search them up on Reddit).

Day 2: Setting Up

Starting is the longest part of any process. I know this, learned this over and over throughout my M.A., but I always forget. Then I get nervous and procrastinate. Fun!

Anyway, with this daily blog, the pressure is on to blog every single day. I debated for some time as to whether I should document everything (à la a personal journal) or if I should be a little more careful because Internet is Internet. Then I concluded that my internet presence is too small to warrant that sort of concern. Let this be my 흑역사.

In any case, time to put my money where Walt Whitman’s mouth is (1) and actually write something honest. How bad could it be to be completely transparent online? (The Circle holds a 17% rating on Rotten Tomatoes, as of right now.)

Have a random picture of some MyMy Chicken I had last night, because pictures = readability:

I swear I usually do keto.

Today, I spent a majority of my time (3 hours, then I got tired) setting things up at the Ref (the Toronto Reference Library):

  • Reading over notes from the Script Coordinator workshop from LIFT (could not read my own shorthand)
  • Re-reading 40 pages of Save the Cat, making notes this time
  • Making a list of Save the Cat exercises I’ll do later (can’t be bothered now)
  • Thinking up an idea for a short film of my making, just to test the waters and start filmmaking for realz (total time spent: 5 min, copying + pasting from the Save the Cat notes)
  • Asking my little sister to buy the educational version of Final Draft 10 (because 50% discount)
  • Reviewing the outline of my web/TV series scripts, 3 episodes of which were written in the past (heinously bad, of course, but made it to Round 2 for Sundance before its rightful rejection)
  • Made a new Spotify playlist, making sure I have songs I usually listen to on YouTube (bought a Spotify Premium Account just yesterday, after my free Fido subscription ended months ago and living for months like the poor sap I am, listening to things on YouTube, until realizing that the amount of bandwidth and battery life that takes up just isn’t worth all the trouble I go through, getting to a cafe/library every day to get work done, because I can’t work at home)
  • Making a list of all the things I’ve failed to do today (like actually searching up/applying things I’ve learned from notes)

So basically, I pushed everything to tomorrow. But only because I am incapable of doing more. My Habitica page is always stuffed with red tasks of course.

Might go see Deadpool 2. By myself, obvi, because I have so many friends and I have the confidence and self-esteem with which to ask them to do things with me.

Should I SEO-optimize this article? I know how to, but I can’t be bothered. I’m also a copywriter, believe it or not. But I’m too tired at the mo.

Works Cited:

(1) ” The great poets are also to be known by the absence in them of tricks and by the justification of perfect personal candor. Then folks echo a new cheap joy and a divine voice leaping from their brains: How beautiful is candor! All faults may be forgiven of him who has perfect candor. Henceforth let no man of us lie, for we have seen that openness wins the inner and outer world and that there is no single exception…” (Preface to Walt Whitman’s Leaves of Grass)

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Being a freelance writer/editor, I also teach with VIPKID for $$$. If you’d like to try teaching little kids in China between the hours of 4AM-10AM EST for about $18USD/hour, you can try VIPKID for yourself with the code/link below.

My referral link:  https://t.vipkid.com.cn/activity/popup?refereeId=8544316&refersourceid=a01

My referral code: 0534U4

Do check out the positives and negatives for yourselves (or just search them up on Reddit).

Day 1: Just Testing

Started this blog. So now, no one can say I didn’t.

Technically, I made the blog 5 months ago. So it only took me 5 months to start writing in it. But isn’t that still something? Totally worth the $60 I have “wasted” not writing anything all this time.

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Pictured above: Swolo Ren (the bear).

I will be dedicating this blog to keeping track of my filmmaking career and writing progress. But blogging about my life too, obviously, because I don’t think they’re truly separate from one another. Not to mention: I’ll be able to keeping track of events in my personal life that impact my progress. Because patterns and self-improvement, you know?

Huzzah! 🙂