Category Archives: Blog

🎉 40 🎂

🎂May 1🎉 | 14°C 🌦 | DAY 400 @ 🏡

I’m old now. We had sushi for dinner and gourmet cinnamon rolls for dessert. We tried to spend some time outside this afternoon, but we got rained out in less than ten minutes.

On the bright side after two months I woke up in my bedroom this morning. We still need to do some touch up on the paint, but with school starting again on Monday I needed to hurry up and get our furniture back in there. We’re on a deadline here. I’ll post a video about the progress of the bedroom in the near future.

I got a notification that I will be graduating with a double major in Film and English this June. During that time I will be taking an 18 credit course load, this way I will only need 9 credits to graduating again with a four year degree in English this December. I’m trying to get my GPA a little higher to open new opportunities. If I can boost my GPA, that will give me the option to get into education, law school or possibly pick up an MA in Cultural Studies. Since I will likely remain unemployed until December anyway, this works out.

While I compress a full school year into six weeks I am laying the groundwork for some creative projects. I started a couple of podcasts for class, and after thinking about how much time I’ll be spending at home this year, it won’t take up a lot of my time to continue with them. They were fun to do, and could make useful additions to a creative profile. It’s surprising how many listings for podcast producer are showing up in my job hunt. I’m also getting footage together for a vlog I’m working on. It won’t be a daily or weekly vlog, it will just be posted whenever I have something to post, so I’m giving my vlog and podcasts their own YouTube channels to help diversify them, while cross posting the to my personal account. Oh, and there is the comic and the creative writing.

At this point I’m starting to think I should just start a content creation agency. Then I can work on all the things I like to do. I have about 30 years until retirement (I want to work until I am 70), and that is a long time to do work a job that makes you miserable. I’m going to make an effort to do work that makes me happy.

School’s Out! For now…

April 25 | 4°C ☁️ | DAY 394 @ 🏡 

📖 Life on Mars: Poems by Tracy K. Smith

This has been a long month. I have been working on the bedroom for the past month (video coming soon) and working on final projects for four classes. I just submitted my final project on Friday and finished painting the bedroom this morning (I just need to do a little touch up work) so now I have a week off.

Back when I thought this summer was going to offer me more work than I could handle, I signed up to take some online classes at Film Training Manitoba. Given the way things are going right now, I don’t anticipate a busy summer, so I’m going to spend this week getting myself certified to be on set as per DGC standards. That way when work does pick up again I’ll be ready. I’m even considering getting myself certified to fly a small drone.

Next week I turn 40 and then start taking a few extra university classes this spring. I’m putting myself in a position to go back to school and get my fourth year BA in English if I want it in two semesters or less. Until then, I’ll just setting for that three year English/Filmmaking double major that I will be receiving this spring.

I’m currently trying to figure out my next step. I have a pitch package and a script ready to develop Séance into a short film. I also have the first chapter of a mystery novel that needs the remainder of the book written. I have found myself enjoying the cartooning process again. I’m also wanting to continue that podcast I started for school back in February. I’m starting to think I should just start a production company so I can work on these creative projects and apply for grants to make them happen.

All that will need to wait until July before that can happen. I am still acting as a teacher for a few hours a day, while my daughter does her remote learning.

Nine More Days

April 14 | 0°C ☁️ | DAY 383 @ 🏡 

📖 Life on Mars: Poems by Tracy K. Smith

  • I should be done with university in nine days. I should be, but I signed up for a spring term. I will still be graduating in June with a double major in English and Filmmaking, but with COVID still in full swing and my prospects of getting a new job this year getting fewer and fewer with each passing day, I have decided to get a 4 year BA in English (Creative Writing or Screen and Cultural Studies) and a minor in Theatre and Film. This will also allow me to get my GPA up, as I am trying to decide if I want to get my Masters in Cultural Studies or enter into an after-degree program in Education. Both of which require me to have a higher GPA than what I am graduating with.
  • I’m getting my three year BA this year because I want the option to get a job. So far we’re paying the bills, but it would sure be nice to put that English/Film degree to use and make some money on the side. It was starting to look like the film industry would be ramping up again and there would be more work than available crew members could handle, but with the COVID variants entering the picture, that is starting to make things look pretty bleak. 
  • I’m finishing up my creative writing portfolio right now, as well as a podcast research assignment and a research comic. I should be finished all of this in the next few days, and ready to move on to whatever comes my way in early May. 
  • Part of my creative writing portfolio has the first chapter of a novel idea I’m actually very proud of. If I have no work in July and August, I plan to spend those months finishing it and revising it down to a final draft that can be shopped around to literary agents.
  • Speaking of creative writing, I currently have three short stories and four poems out for submissions to literary journals and writing contests. Hopefully one will get published. 
  • Our bedroom ceiling has been patched up, but I still have to go in and paint it. The sudden blizzard this week has put a hold on that, so I started patching every little crack in the walls I could find. Someday this house will look nice. 
  • My desk is currently set up as a vlogging/podcasting studio. Since I can’t get work in the field I want right now, I’m trying to take advantage of the whole situation and use it to make my own work. Right now it looks like I’ll be working on a weekly vlog and movie review podcast. I haven’t set up dedicated websites to either, but I probably should. 
  • Currently I am moving my blog to Patreon for public posting. I’m not certain what I’ll do with my WordPress and Tumblr sites. I have deleted or hidden most older posts. I’m not sure if I should bother revamping them. A lot of the features I want from WP require me to pay more money than it would cost to self-host, and I just don’t feel like going through that hassle right now. Also it’s hard for me to justify spending money on a blog that isn’t making me any money in return. I think I might actually have to pay someone to make me the theme I want, which is a three column header that will post the latest comic, vlog and podcast at the top of the page, and then a blog beneath it.

Status: March

March 11 | -12°C 🌘 | DAY 349 @ 🏡
📖 “The Social Photo: On Photography and Social Media” by Nathan Jurgenson

  • Good News/Bad News:
    • Good News: We got our new mattress today.
    • Bad News: We’ve been sleeping on our sectional for two weeks and I’m not sure I remember how a mattress works.
    • Good News: We got our roof fixed.
    • Bad News: It cost us over $800.
    • Good News: We don’t have asbestos in our bedroom ceiling.
    • Bad News: Insurance doesn’t want to cover the damages
    • Good News: They’re covering the costs of testing for asbestos and ripping open my ceiling to assess the damage to the attic.
    • Bad News: We’re still sleeping in our living room.
    • Good News: Now we’re sleeping on a mattress on the floor instead of the sectional.
    • More Good News: I got three assignments back this week, and they were all in the A range.
    • Possibly Bad News: I just handed in an essay that might be my first <A- this term.
  • Tomorrow afternoon some contractors are stopping by to rip open my bedroom ceiling to assess the damage to the attic. Good thing my wife is off work tomorrow, as I’m sure it’ll be noisy as hell in the house.
  • I have to venture into the basement tomorrow to retrieve some books. I have a research project coming up, and I know I already own half the research materials I need to do this project, I just need to find them.
  • Classes end in three weeks. Then I have a month of independent projects. On the bright side, I’m going to have completed my double major by the end of April and have my diploma by the end of June. Still, I’m thinking I may come back in the spring, summer and fall. My grades have improved enough this year, I might actually be able to apply for grad school. It’s only one my year of school that I’ll need to endure, and my job prospects aren’t exactly all that enticing at the moment, so if the option for remote learning is still there, I’m thinking why not?

Drip. Drip. Drip.

It’s 1:15am. Pillows and blankets are covering the olive green sectional in my living room. My wife is asleep at one end, she does work tomorrow, the cat is trying to shake me down for food. If he doesn’t get his late night bribe, he’ll do his best to try to wake up my wife, or worse, our child who decided she didn’t want to sleep tonight.

Sometime around 4:45pm to 5pm my wife walked upstairs to get something from our bedroom and couldn’t help but notice the giant puddle of brown/orange water on the floor, and on the blankets, and on the mattress, and the light fixture from the ceiling, and the bubbling blisters of paint on the ceiling. Our bedroom is unusable right now. We relocated what we could. The blankets went into the washer and dryer right away, so at least we can use those tonight. We will need a new mattress now. I just went upstairs to access the damage with a flashlight, and ended up having to crack a window and then crank up the heat. I don’t know what it is, but there is a godawful stench emanating from that room.

The insurance adjuster can’t get out here until at least 10am tomorrow morning. I hope this is a quick and easy fix. This sectional is murder on my back. Also, my home office is now a closet for all of our clothing, which makes it almost impossible to do work in. I’ve got a project due tomorrow. I’m not happy with the way I had to half ass it this evening due to all the time I lost. I’ve got two weeks to fix it after this, and I’m not sure I can do that without a quiet space to work.

This is just adding to the stress I already had. I’m really hoping this is covered by our insurance, because if that smell doesn’t go away soon, we’ll need to find somewhere else to live for a little while. I don’t want to sleep on the couch for the next two to four weeks. On the bright side, according to the contractor I spoke to, and the insurance agent, we’re not alone. The temperatures fluctuated above and below zero enough to cause problems for many people throughout the city. I wanted to do some renovations upstairs, but I was hoping to wait until I had a job again.

It’s almost funny. I have lived in 7 different buildings in my life, and this is the only time I have had to put out containers to catch water dripping from the ceiling. I feel like I’ve seen this in cartoons so often, it didn’t really happen to anyone.