Well, it’s been about a million years since I’ve updated, so how do I even get started?
Here: I’m not good with social media. I don’t love it. Sometimes it makes me really excited, other times it makes me horribly depressed and I avoid it entirely. For months. So please forgive our absence while we’ve been editing this movie. The thought of reporting on the process has just been too much.
Here’s what’s going on – a lot of life has been happening since we finished filming last fall. First, I was exhausted. And a little stunned as I returned to a life without constant panic. And it kind of lasted for months, this dazed tiredness as I tried to get back into a normal life of day jobs and clip labeling and converting and early edits.
And, as I said, life happened. Over Christmas my grandpa passed away. We took care of him in the last days of his life and he made it through Christmas day and passed on the 26th. It was hard and wonderful and I spent a lot of hours sitting next to him reading and rotating Christmas music CDs on my mom’s Macbook and every once in a while he would drift awake and wave to me or ask me what I was reading.
My grandpa had such an effect on me growing up, his admiration for and devotion to art helped me see it as a dignified and worthy thing. His incredible library of books filled with white cards of his blocky handwriting, his art studio with carefully arranged paint tubes and his handmade notebooks bound with tape (and tape, and tape, and tape). I’m just beginning to study his book on bread, filled with his notecards. Some of my last conversations with him were about Shakespeare.
Then this spring my family moved out of our home in Neenah, where we’ve been for 24 years, since I was four. I’m still processing it. It’s a real, true heartbreak, but we were so lucky to be together there for so long. It was the perfect home for my childhood and I think I may miss it forever. I can’t even talk about it without crying. And yet, it seems like a good thing to move forward. A fresh start can be freeing, I guess. It’s strange to think that my dad lived there for only 18 years.
And now – happy news – my sister is getting married! They grow up so fast…
And other happiness – we went to the Wisconsin Film Festival in Madison in April and it was a blast. Really, just a wonderful festival – go next year if you’re in town. We saw such excellent films and it was an honor to have our film shown – humble though it was (actually, a little too humble for us – the screening pointed out a few painful issues with our $300 short, such as sound and color issues that we have to work out – embarrassing to admit, but, hey, I’m letting you in on the process, right?).
And then there’s June…the biggest, hardest thing I’ve ever done…and am still doing (which does NOT have issues like our short – we shot that first as a trial for June, thank God). I dedicated myself during the month of March to a really solid rough cut of the film – and somehow, through sheer grit and determination (and saying no to finding actual paying work and living on verrrry little money), through headaches from the computer screen and lying on the floor with my hands over my eyes and then drinking coffee and getting on with it…I did it. We have a very nice rough cut of the movie. It flows. It’s funny. It’s sweet.
It’s very exciting. Mind you, we are NOT in a place where we can allow people to see it yet. It has to go through several more edits, which I’m currently working on.
But I just could not talk about this over the winter. I did not have it in me. And because I’m fully honest here, I’ll let you in on the process, just a wee bit – I really hated this movie at times. I really was disappointed in myself a lot, a lot, a lot. I mean, in all truthfulness, I think I feel that way about myself a lot anyway, neurotic that I am, but this movie was it – everything – and at times, in the early cuts, this magical movie that I’d been so excited about did not look so pretty. In fact, I really didn’t want anyone to ever see it. Ever.
But that’s just part of the process. With everything. And now, I can say with certainty, after the early stages, that this is a really really nice little movie. It’s not perfect, it looks homespun, but you can FEEL the heart of it in every scene. And most of that has to do with our actors, their loveliness, their open hearts. Please stop me, because I’m going to gush about them all over this blog. I could cry, I’m so grateful for our beautiful cast. They light up this movie, every single person.
Anyway, I’ve talked a lot now. This movie is going to be wonderful, but I have a really long way to go. I’m suspecting that our premiere will be in September now as we’re going to need help with color and sound this summer.
(Ugh, that’s another post.)
For now, just know – I’m still editing, it’s going well, it’s still kind of a mess, but every day it’s getting better.
And I can hardly believe that one year ago we were just in the early days of shooting this movie.
And I know that this winter I promised some clips at some point and did not deliver – well, I’m telling the truth now. Keep an eye out this summer, you’ll start seeing little bits of this movie from time to time.
Whew. Mmmkay. We’re back!