Okay, it’s been a month since my last post, and I’m sorry. I’ve had a lot to deal with lately, and unfortunately I haven’t had a lot of time to put in the work necessary to have something to post about here.
I think I mentioned in my first post that I’m a studio teacher; I work with underage actors on film sets. And that’s one of the things that’s been keeping me busy lately. Not the work itself; more some of the, um, professional advancement necessities. See, to get licensed as a studio teacher, it’s necessary to first have a California teaching credential. In fact, it’s necessary to have two teaching credentials, both a multiple-subject credential (which would normally be for teaching elementary school) and a single-subject credential (which would normally be for teaching middle school or high school). Moreover, the single-subject credential has to be in a core subject: English, math, science, social science, or a foreign language.
So, of course, I have those—I couldn’t be (legally) working as a studio teacher if I didn’t. The thing is, though, when you first get a teaching credential, it’s a preliminary credential. It expires in five years, unless you take additional classwork additionally to “clear” the credential. And that’s where I am now; I’m in the middle of the “induction program”, as it’s called, to clear my credentials. I want to get that done as soon as possible not only because I need to get it done before my preliminary credentials expire (I’ve still got a couple of years before that happens), but also because after I get clear credentials I can get on the Studio Teachers Union call list, meaning that if a union production is looking for a studio teacher and no union studio teachers are available, I could get called up and start accumulating union hours and eventually get in the union myself. (Yes, there’s a Studio Teachers Union; there are unions for everything in the entertainment business.) And that would be a big advantage, because not only would it probably mean steadier work than I’m getting now, but also higher-paying work—the minimum daily rate for a union studio teacher is about twice what I’m making now.
So, yes, I’ve been doing the classwork to clear my credential. And I ran into a bit of a stumblingblock. As part of one of the requirements of the latest class in the induction program, I have to film myself teaching a class of at least fifteen students. And that’s a bit of a problem, because as a studio teacher I don’t teach classes of at fifteen students. A single studio teacher can’t teach more than ten young actors on a schoolday (more than that and the production has to hire an additional studio teacher), and even then I’m not generally teaching them a formal classroom lesson; often, especially if they’re extras just there for the day, they bring their own work from their regular school, and all I do is supervise, make sure they put in the required time on their schoolwork, and help them as needed. So, while most teachers clearing their credential are working in a classroom anyway and can just film themselves on the job, in my case I had to make special arrangements to be able to teach in a classroom for one day.
I’m still in touch with and on good terms with the math and science department chair at a private school where I used to teach, so I contacted him and arranged to teach one class at that school… eventually. But setting up the day was more of a hassle than I expected, and then the class itself didn’t go quite as I’d hoped for a number of reasons. I won’t go into all the details—I’ve probably gone on about this whole thing at more length than I should have already—but suffice to say this is one thing that’s been keeping me busy for the last month or so, and been a source of considerable stress.
It’s not the only thing that’s been keeping me busy. I’ve been working on a webseries; I have a writing project I hope may eventually bring a comfortable return… I’ve had a lot of projects going on. And, unfortunately, my time is finite and I’ve had to prioritize. And as much as I’d like to work on this blog, realistically with my current circumstances I have to prioritize those projects that are actually likely to help me make a living. And the blog, alas, does not fall into that category. It has not escaped my thoughts that at some point it may… if I ever get a following for this blog, it’s entirely possible that I could someday perhaps put up a Patreon or something and actually start making some money from it. But it’s clearly very far from that stage now, and I’ve had to focus on the things that are (or seem likely to soon be) bringing me in some money.
These circumstances will not last forever. By the end of April, or by early May at the latest, I hope to be back on track and able to post regularly again. But it had been long enough I figured I should probably put up a post to explain what’s going on.
Actually, I may have something to post about before that… by the end of this weekend, perhaps. This weekend, as it turns out, is the forty-first Ludum Dare, an event in which participants make a complete game based on a provided theme in forty-eight hours (or seventy-two hours, for the relaxed rules). I’ve participated once before in Ludum Dare, and wanted to do so again, but haven’t found the time. I don’t really have the time this weekend either, but… well, maybe I’ll find a way to make time for it. I do want to do it, and it’s only a few times a year.
So, anyway, once again, sorry for the lack of posts lately, but I hope to be back at it soon. See you then!