Tech Struggle

(Source: imgflip.com)

Good news, I’m now working with the industry insider that I wanted to work with. Because she is such an insider, I’m bound by an NDA so I won’t be able to post about my job. What I can talk about is one struggle associated with my job:

Word processing software.

Not necessarily the software in general, but the version that is downloaded on my laptop…it’s giving me serious hell! It took me nearly 2 hours to get one document done due to tabs being missing on this version without an option to download. I’m super pissy about it because I want to do well and not look like a total idiot.

When I go home tonight, I’m going to play around with it a bit more to see if I can correct the problems before Monday.

New Year, New Post

(Filter courtesy of Snapchat.)

If you follow me on Instagram, I posted a story that many of my friends and family responded to me as depressing. While it may be, it was the truth.

2018, even with the good things that happened, was absolute garbage. Many of the goals I set for myself did not come into fruition. As a result I chose not to set new goals or resolutions for 2019. This way I have no expectations or disappointment when recapping 2019 on December 31st. It just is.

I also said there’s work to do, which is absolutely true. I have a workshop this weekend and an audition next Tuesday. I’m still without a home in Dublin (though I’m searching frantically) so I messaged the head of the department about what my options are if I can’t find a place before the 14th when the new semester starts.

As far as the school is concerned, I managed to get a shared lead role in a heavily abridged version of Shakespeare’s ‘The Tempest’ as Prospero. If I’m completely screwed to come back, the show will go on with the other actor fully taking on the mantle of Prospero which gives me comfort. I hate having to drop out of projects with no coverage.

I think this new year will be ok. There were definitely opportunities that presented themselves that I felt I should take. The main thing I need to do is stop thinking there’s only one way to have a successful acting career. That will open up things a bit.

The Semester is Nearly Over 😱

(Source: Student Problems Facebook.)

One. More. Class.

Then I fly out on Tuesday morning back to the United States, and not a moment too soon. To say this semester kicked my ass is an understatement. Yes, it did improve, and so did I. However, the steps it took to get here were super treacherous. This trip back home will be a bit of a reprieve.

There are some updates I wanted to include in this post that I talked about in recent days:

• I’m no longer in the professor’s course that disrespected me in front of the entire class. I had to take the case up with the head of my major’s department and the academic dean to move me out of his class. I was moved to a different professor’s course where I’m ACTUALLY LEARNING my craft and it’s not being treated like a contestant for the teacher’s favorite student. The original professor still infuriates me. Not only in how he treated me, but the rumblings I’m hearing from how he is treating the other students. It also doesn’t help that he’s industry (working actor) too. If I ever have to work with him in a professional setting and he is disrespectful to me again, I hope I will be in a position of power by that point in time to call him out on his bullying instead of taking myself out of the situation like I did in class; which made me feel powerless. I suspect that is what he wanted all along. To make me feel powerless. He is a bully after all.

• The classmate finally came around and contributed the bare minimum to the group project and no need to “correct” my paper. Between my friend who also worked on the project calling them out their lack of effort and my email, it seems that kicked them in the pants enough to do some work. I hope to never have to work on another project with them ever again.

• The short film I worked on is coming together fast! We only shot it this past Wednesday and there is already a rough cut that was sent to the directors and the producer/writer of the production. Soon I hope to use some of the footage for my own show reel. Finally a friggin reel. It’s all coming together.

Aside from the updates, I managed to book another fit modeling gig back home and apply for some mini gigs. I’m also teaching at the dance studio this month starting next Thursday. My reprieve will be a bit busy, a bit profitable, and most of all it will be at home. I can’t wait!

Workshops

(Source: Facebook)

I use this meme because it’s a process of appointments to get approval to work here. Especially with so many educational offerings from other theatre schools that my school does not offer in the slightest. Like:

•Casting and Auditions

•Stage Combat (primarily Rapier and Dagger work)

•Showreel Preparation

The Casting and Audition course is particularly interesting to me because that last audition I had back in December, I bombed completely. While my professors talk about auditions, they are not really touching on how difficult the process actually is. In fact many working actors in the thick of the industry say that auditioning is a skill of its own. Once you get a booking, doing the job is super easy.

The next beast to tame is the showreel. As I mentioned on a previous post, the hardest part of booking work has been a lack of a reel to present to potential casting agencies. Mainly due to not being cast in low budget or student films who are not paying me, but will compensate me with reel footage, but in order to be considered for a part, I must have a reel first…..

(Source: Twitter. Same, cute little dog, same.)

The workshop that is offering this is also teaching advanced techniques in working in film along with production of reel footage for me to use.

Of course, to cap it all off, there is another Stage Combat workshop that I want to take. Clearly I can’t get enough of this art, especially since I would be training in a brand new weapons category.

Two of the three courses are being paid for from my previous modeling jobs. The third I will need to find a job to pay for that course. Wish me luck!

My Apartment is Kicking My Butt in Shape

(Source: somewhere on Twitter.)

I haven’t really talked too much about the apartment I was able to rent. Honestly my schedule doesn’t really permit for much of anything so it’s been difficult to stay consistent with this blog, but that complaint is for another time. However the time has come to not only talk about the apartment, but also why it’s forcing me to get in shape.

The apartment is really old and the bathroom is scary gross. The tenants are good people, so the lack of cleanliness is not a reflection on them. It has more to do with the fact that the last time the space was truly renovated was in the early 1900’s. I would fetch a guess that the bathroom has not had an update since the early 1990’s. There are all sorts of vermin crawling all over the place. I bought special storage bins for my clothing and toiletries so they wouldn’t have bugs in them. Plus I regularly check my suitcases and my bed to make sure no critters have crawled in them. It’s bad.

When it comes to using the bathroom, I hover squat over the toilet…IF I use it. I just use the toilet while I’m at school or at Starbucks mostly. The sink is disgusting, so I use the kitchen sink in my apartment to wash my hands and brush my teeth.

The worst part is the shower. This is a shared bathroom for 3 apartments within the building with 5 adults living there and for the shower to work it charges €2 for 5 minutes.

Yeah…..no.

1) I need to take more than 5 minutes in the shower just for my hair alone. So in order for me to be truly cleansed, I would say I’m spending upwards of €6 per shower.

2) I bathe everyday, because I sweat profusely and I walk around in city pollution. €6 daily adds up big time. I’m looking at €168 monthly just to take a shower.

3) Since living in film and funk gives me anxiety, my family and I established that it would be cheaper to pay for a gym membership and use the shower there. Right now I’m on a student contract (3 month intervals) with a really posh gym in the city for only €45 per month.

So I’m taking advantage of my new membership by using the facilities for more than just hygiene purposes. I’m seriously out of shape and even though I lost a little weight since I got here, it wasn’t significant enough for me to buy new clothes or look better in photos. This is a good thing. I worked out after school today for 30 minutes and was already super winded. I’m now motivated to workout every day until that no longer is an issue. Hopefully I drop a few more pounds and gain some energy back.

Oh and I took a super long shower too.

(Source: Facebook.)

The Big Move

(Source: DIYLOL.COM)

Just a couple of more weeks before I jet off to another land. I’m a roller coaster of emotions, but I will be alright. The big stuff is still yet to come:

•Wardrobe

•Packing

•Having all of the necessary documents

•Energy

A couple of things about this move are making me a little nervous. For starters, even though I have proof of acceptance to the school, medical insurance, money for cost of living, a valid passport, and accommodation, the immigration officer is well within their rights to block me from entering the country. I’m a U.S. Citizen, and unfortunately my country is not in good standing with the world right now. This is a valid reason to not permit me to study in Ireland.

The other concern is when I get there, will I be approved to work part-time? When meeting with the second round of immigration officers, I have to prove my finances by way of bank statements and additional income. I really NEED to work while I’m there. My family is not rich and we still have a slew of money issues.

I’m trying to hope for the best though.

As of right now, my notices were put in for work and next week is my final week at two of my three jobs. The last one I’m working all the way until it’s time for me to jet off. I have no idea how I’m going to pull it all off, but I’m going to make it happen.

ARE YOU SERIOUS?!

(Source: Facebook.)

Cruel fate, why do you do this to me?! There is a new movie being shot in Philadelphia that is backed by the Russo Brothers and stars Chadwick Boseman called ’17 Bridges.’ It starts filming late September after I leave for Dublin.

WHY?!

This would have been to closest I’ve ever been to work with people from Marvel (besides Creed 2 and the Wizard World Convention a couple of years ago.) I am sad and will have to live vicariously through my friends who will undoubtedly be working on this project.

Sigh 😔

(Source: Facebook.)

Falling Behind a Bit

(Source: Facebook.)

Welp, it’s not Sunday. Not only did I fail to post ‘Work Update pt. 2’, but I also didn’t post a new episode of ‘Save the Drama for Your Shamma’. My apologies it’s been a long week.

Here are the updates:

•I lost one of my shifts at the restaurant, which sucks because I was starting to build up some more cash. It also came at a time where I did get a windfall of money from my Grandfather to complete my move to Dublin; however, having extra padding is super helpful. I’m going to put in my resignation notice soon anyway, so there’s no use in complaining about it now.

•Other particulars for school have been in place for a while now with the exception of student accommodation. Mainly because I’m not using student financial aid and paying on my own instead. This means I have to find my own accommodation and it’s been difficult. Dublin is one of the hardest cities to find housing. There are plenty of apartments I could live in…if I was wealthy. Unfortunately I don’t have that kind of money to live in one of those spaces so it looks like my first semester may be spent living in a hostel.

•I WILL have a new episode of ‘Save the Drama for Your Shamma’ tomorrow and again on Sunday. I just had to get my life together in the meantime.

That’s all for now. I hope to have better news next time.

I Own Property in Scotland!

(Source: @matthewalexanderkellerwilliams IG.)

My history buff friend, Sean, shared a link on Groupon to purchase a share of land to restore a very old castle in Scotland. I figured, why not? It was less than $20 and it goes towards restoring a piece of history.

Here’s the fun part:

1) I have a deed to the small patch of land I now own.

2) I also have the title of Lady of Chaol Ghleann which I found out is legal (you may now call me Lady Shamma Casson 😊)

3) I’m allowed to wear the Dunans Rising Tartan which looks something like this:

(The Scottish Register of Tartans.)

A little backstory on my relationship with plaid:

my great-grandmother and grandmother had an unnatural obsession with plaid. Clothes, accessories, furniture, even my great-grandmother’s car was upholstered in it. So the love of plaid was killed out of me.

However the Dunans Rising Tartan has such pretty coloring…I’ll give it a pass. I plan on purchasing either a scarf or a wrap in the future.

I’m also using the property ownership as a manifestation affirmation. Hopefully I manifest something more tangible to live in like a tiny castle. A girl can dream.

Another Opportunity

(Source: Fresh Prince of Bel Air, NBC.)

The Universe works in very mysterious ways. Not only was I offered an opportunity to audition for a film, now a videographer friend of mine wants to work on a project with me.

This time, it’s a horror scene that I would film with another person. No pay, BUT he’s giving me the footage for my reel!

I mentioned in a previous post about productions that can’t pay their actors, but have the audacity to not hire them without a reel, and the only compensation they offer is more reel footage. It made no sense. My friend, who offered me this project, is doing this the CORRECT way by making beneficial for both of us.

I will give credit where credit is due. He watched my Instagram stories where I talk and film all of the time and that was a form of a reel for him. Don’t be mistaken though, I would never be able to pull those stories together into a professional reel to send to casting directors. However, the industry is changing and more casting decisions are being made based upon how strong your social media following is.

I’m excited about this opportunity, and a little suspicious about why everything I’ve wanted to do since January, is only now forming a month before I’m supposed to leave.

(Source: Facebook.)