Career Day at school

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  • Career Day at school

    This year my son started middle school (6th-8th grade) and another parent contacted me today suggesting that I take part in the 8th grade career fair. This is where parents set up little tables and talk about the various careers they do. This other parent mentioned that she knows her daughter and friends are really getting into making and uploading videos to You Tube and myspace, etc. and that filmmaking (and at the initial end of that to some degree, screenwriting) is something that would really interest the kids. Now, I guess I don't have a problem setting up a table and talking to kids about writing, but I can't really call it a career as such and we all know that it's such a crap shoot that I almost feel guilty encouraging kids to take it up. I mean would I include guides to "Living in LA cheap" and "How to wait tables while waiting to be discovered" - I don't really know much about filmmaking and editing - the two other components to making your own short films, but I can answer basic questions and direct them to local youth filmmaking resources and websites. My son took a documentary filmmaking class through our local IFP this summer and I know they have other classes for kids.

    I'm just not sure if I would be there for entertainment and curiosity and if I should emphasize that it's an extremely hard business to break in to - especially living in the midwest. I have won the most prestigious award for screenwriters here in MN this summer (McKnight fellowship) so I have somewhat of a success story but that question "Have I seen anything you've written?" makes me cringe.

    I guess it's a good opportunity to expose kids to things they don't usually get to talk about and it's an interesting topic for that age group. I could have samples of scripts available (5 pages of a kid flick or tv program) but honestly, what would you say to a bunch of 14 year old with stars in their eyes and video cameras ready to go? I always say to myself that I wish I knew screenwriting existed at that age as I watched movies constantly and I wrote a lot, but it never actually crossed my mind as a career.

    Any thoughts or suggestions are greatly appreciated

    wenonah

  • #2
    Re: Career Day at school

    It's a tough call to attend a career day when you're not in that field making a living at it.

    I would pass. Maybe next year

    Failing that, why don't you try and get an actual making-a-living writer at the school. They can be novel, short, reporter, screenwriter, anything to do with writing...

    EJ

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    • #3
      Re: Career Day at school

      If you just won a McKnight fellowship, you are making a living at it this year.

      Career is such an old-school term. Now, it's about portable skills. To interest kids in writing (and storytelling) is a very good thing.

      Jim

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      • #4
        Re: Career Day at school

        I agree with writerly and Jim M. It helps that you've written the best amateur spec script I've ever read.

        You're definitely making a living doing it this year ... that's what the fellowship affords you, a year of writing without worrying about money. At least in theory.
        http://confoundedfilms.com

        http://www.myspace.com/confoundedfilms

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        • #5
          Re: Career Day at school

          Oh ****. I forgot you landed that $$ with the fellowship.

          In that case, pull up and chair and table! lol

          EJ

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          • #6
            Re: Career Day at school

            What you could consider is doing this in cooperation with a couple other filmmakers in the area who do this for a living. Perhaps Sam Fischer from the production side? He's smart, entertaining, and has been working fulltime in film production for what? 25 years?
            http://confoundedfilms.com

            http://www.myspace.com/confoundedfilms

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            • #7
              Re: Career Day at school

              Thanks guys Man, I shudder at the thought of dragging Sam into the regions of middle school hell and make him sit at my table, although is definitely is the real deal. IF I do this, I'm sure I can pull it off and think of something creative to deliver.

              I appreciate the input.

              wenonah

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              • #8
                Re: Career Day at school

                But even when you're makng a living out of it, you're not always making a living out of it.

                I've actively discouraged my son from thinking there's such a thing as a career in the Arts. Yet all I seem to do these days is rescue him from the cop shop for tagging.

                Although someone's mother having a screenwriting table set up on careers day might be discouragement enough.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: Career Day at school

                  Originally posted by maralyn View Post

                  Although someone's mother having a screenwriting table set up on careers day might be discouragement enough.

                  It's okay, I'm hot.

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