“The Pioneer Drama Service is accepting video contest entries from middle and high schools to support drama programs nationwide.
Through The Show Must Go On contest, Pioneer Drama will award more than $10,000 in scripts and royalties to middle and high schools for three-minute videos created by students and staff that demonstrate why “the show must go on” on at their school. Videos should demonstrate what the drama club or program is like now and why it wants to win the contest. In addition, entries should address how the drama club or program helps the school and students, the obstacles has it overcome, and how putting on a play will touch other lives.”
Click here for more information.
Find out about grants and funding in the grants and funding category.
To purchase a download of the Funding Your Dream Documentary seminar, click here.
As my own mother puts it, “Motherhood is more than a notion.” The demands, intensity and rewards are talked about, blogged about and dramatized in fiction. With the non-stop schedules and sometime infantile personalities, television production work can be just as challenging. Put the two together, and you may have a recipe of serious stress.
How can TV Moms balance the demands of the family they love with the career they love (or at least find themselves in)? I recently took part as a panelist in a discussion about motherhood and production hosted by the Washington, DC area Woman in Television and Film association to discuss that very question. We shared some tips to help juggle it all.
- Give up the notion of Super Mom. There is no such thing. We are all Super Moms if we are loving and attentive to the needs of our family. But this does not mean we are perfect. I once sent my daughter to daycare in two left shoes. It’s a long story. The point is, she survived and doesn’t even remember it. At the time of writing this article, I am feeling pretty good about my children’s development and my career development. Just don’t look in my car – it’s disgustingly dirty. And it’s not because of me that our floors are fit to eat off of. Thank God for Daddy!
- Join a TV Mom’s support group or start your own. An editor friend and I decided to have TV Moms play date. We invite other mothers in the industry to bring their kids, hand-me-downs and resumes. It’s fun and rejuvenating. Plus I may have just gotten a gig because of one. I also started a Goal Group with some Super Mom friends of mine. We get together once a week, sometime via telephone, to set goals and hold each other accountable. That’s how I finally got this blog site off the ground!
- Get a mentor. No matter how far along you are in your career, there is always someone who has had more experience. Perhaps it is in production or perhaps it is in being a working mom. Perhaps it is in an area of production that you’ve never explored. It doesn’t matter if they are younger or older, man or woman. It is just nice to have a “go to” person who can help you navigate your career. My mentor is a single mom and an industry heavy-hitter. She has given me helpful advice over the years and priceless job recommendations that have resulted in gigs.
- Research family friendly companies. If you are working in a situation that is not compatible with your family life, research other options. It may take awhile but it is possible to change your job environment.
- Craft a support system. I am lucky to leave in my hometown with a number of family and friends that I can call on if I have to work late or travel. If you can afford in-home help, consider getting a nanny while the children are young. As the saying goes, “what all working women need is a wife.”
- Search out flexible opportunities. Perhaps job sharing or working from home is an option for you. If not, perhaps you can work through your lunch break Monday thought Thursday and work a half day on Fridays. For two years, I searched for a work from home situation. I didn’t give up and have been working from home for the last 6 months. This round of working from home may not last forever but I’ll keep searching for something permanent.
Don’t forget that you are not alone. All TV Mom have moments when they feel that they are not doing a good job at home or at work. The trick is to keep these moments to a minimum and not let them get you down. Every once in awhile, that guilt monster tries to jump up on me. But when I look at my children, I see that they are doing well, growing strong and enjoying life. It’s okay if we miss our swim play date this time. No one will fail to graduate high school if we put off potty training a couple of weeks until Mommy finishes shooting that news special. And it’s okay if the kids have oatmeal and broccoli for dinner once in awhile. In fact, they like it. Just keep doing the best that you can and believe it or not, your best is good enough.
Oh come off it! Stop giving me dirty looks when I say that I am a documentary producer who enjoys Reality TV. I don’t enjoy ALL Reality TV shows just like I don’t enjoy all Documentaries or Sitcoms. I have my particular poisons – Amazing Race and Survivor are long time favorites. I love Amazing Race because I love international backdrops. I also like to see what happens to team communication when there is a lack of rest and nutrition as well as a lot of stress. Okay, that IS a bit intellectual.
Concerning Survivor, I’ve watched every episode since season one when someone I knew appeared as a contestant. (Well, there is one season where I missed half of the shows because I was pregnant and had a toddler at home. I fell asleep in front of the TV a lot.) I admit I get sucked in emotionally. I really CARE about who wins or losses and get mad when the people I am routing against find a way to make it another day. I go to bed imagining what I would have done . There was a time when I didn’t have to imagine that hard because my job felt a lot like the show – cut throat politics and high school cliques.
Moving from a viewer stand point on to a professional one, I like to see what techniques are being used on the most popular shows. (My husband gets tired for me “working” while watching TV). I like to see what is going on with character development, editing, sound and story line. Survivor, by the way, has great intro pieces and a wonderful use of low angles with wide lenses. They could back off the sound effects during challenges though.
What a blessing to be able to learn and grow in my profession while relaxing with my friends and family in the living room. It doesn’t really matter if it is high-brow or low-brow. If borrowed techniques make it into a documentary or segment that I producing and it works, I just may have Reality TV to thank. I know a graphic artist who would get very upset if you so much as said “hello” to him during his lunch break while he was studying the commercials that were being played in the break room.
Is it hypocritical of me to develop a career around educational and informational programming and then go home and watch highly sensational shows? Perhaps. But at the end of the day I am a proud fan of TV. Now excuse me. The DVR is calling with a new episode of Run’s House.