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  • Brian Martin

Preparation

Updated: Nov 26, 2019

Nov 21, 2019:


I have to admit, as I am sure most can understand, it is difficult enough to find time during the day to do some of the things that we would like to do. We can set up a schedule all we want but if we don’t adhere to that schedule through discipline and perseverance we might as well have not bothered with a schedule at all.


When I embarked upon this project, I was determined that I would try to write something interesting about my journey that may be of some use or amusement to those reading about it, but would also provide a bit of a possible guide line of do’s and don’ts that might hopefully serve anyone who cared to follow down their own path.


It is incredibly easy to get side-tracked by the daily soap operas, and I’m not referring necessarily to television soap operas, although there are a few news networks that would fall under this category that grab at our attention and become rational excuses for why we didn’t adhere to our own program. I’m certainly no exception. It is after all my contention that I will post at least once a week on the adventures and misadventures of my quest to unearthing the time capsule of my creative soul. So, deferment will be an obvious challenge for a retired person such as myself.


As a back story I would say to those that don’t know me that I have been working towards setting up this project site for some time but that without proper material and knowledge of the internet (I am after all internet illiterate), along with a general and I think reasonable trepidation about letting it all hang out there, it has been a bit of a challenge, but here we are.


Leading up to the initial publishing of this site I have taken some writing courses including one from SFU called the Southbank Writers Program. I have attended the annual Surrey International Writers Conference. I have submitted one of two as yet unpublished novels to agents and publishing houses for their perusal a minimum of fourteen times and have been rejected an equal amount of times (I’m still crafting my style), but I also did publish a blog on my families trip to France (through Weebly) that I do intend to publish in its entirety on this site in the near future.


I have played and recorded with numerous musicians (samples on my NFA page), formed and subsequently broken up with a couple of different bands, have played at a few little gigs here and there (which were tons of fun), have taken numerous guitar lessons as I continue to try and up my electric guitar game (I’ve been at that for a couple of years now). I am currently enrolled in two different acting classes, have taken professional headshots, put together an acting resume, filmed a couple of different sample monologues, done some improv, some background work, and have participated in two different auditions (still waiting to hear back) so far. I learned how to set up this site by taking a course through WIX (still a work in progress), and I also workout four days a week.


I think it’s important for me to get that out there moving forward so there is an understanding that I didn’t just wake up one day and decide to do this thing and then hit enter two minutes later.

I am preparing as much as I can (some might suggest that I could do more and that might be fair), but as always is the case, there will be setbacks. One of my first biggies so far is an injury that I just incurred at the gym trying to lift a bit more than I should have one more time than I should have resulting in a possible ripped tendon in my left shoulder and bicep. After going to the hospital emergency, I was instructed by the doctor to get an MRI (Magnetic Resonance Imaging) and see a Physiotherapist.


If you can imagine being placed in a coffin one size too small, told not to move, or even twitch for twenty-five minutes and breathe as little as possible while they continually blast you with a variety of obnoxiously loud beeping noises, well…that’s an MRI. I’m currently awaiting the results. My Physio, after a series of pain threshold tests (at least that’s what it seemed like to me) provided me with a couple of different exercises that I could employ to try and keep the injury limber.


My first opportunity to audition for a part in a film happened the day after this injury and you might think that this would have been a hinderance to my performance, but picture if you will four young university students, two male – two female (roughly the same age as my oldest boy), sitting across from me at a table while filming me performing a simulation sex phone call where I’m conversing with a fictitious woman on the other end of the line and going through the initial phases of…well…you know. I’m not so sure that I came across as being entirely comfortable and authentic with that scene, but I am after all my own worst critic.


As this was an early evening audition it was after sunset when my wife (who drove me down there) and I left the downtown core via Main and Hastings street. I have to say that I was completely astounded by the staggering amount of homeless people literally living on the surrounding sidewalks leading up to that intersection. Everybody understands that more needs to be done to help these lost souls, but clearly, we are losing this battle.


It was shortly after that when our 2012 minivan alternator cacked and all of our electronics went including the power brakes and steering forcing us to pull over on west 6th avenue just in the nick of time before the entire vehicle shut down for good. West 6th avenue, as it turns out, appears to be the speed street capital of Vancouver, as even though we were legally parked and were thankfully exhibiting our hazard lights it seemed inevitable that some speed demon (and there were numerous) would not be able to make the change to the alternate left lane in time (waiting to the very last second) and would undoubtably smash into our rear end with tragic results. It took an hour and a half before BCAA was able to attend and an additional hour to successfully tow us back to South Surrey. Sooo…that audition cost a few bucks.


The second audition was the next evening and was a cold read, which basically means you’re reading the scene in front of the director without having previously read the script. This one went considerably better. I had, however, been practicing my Scottish accent earlier in the day, by reading a lengthy piece of writing out loud to myself in order to work on some Scottish intonations such as tapping the r’s. It was not intended for use in this upcoming audition, but when I finished the part the director said that though it was a good scene, could I try it again with less Scottish. Maybe I won’t get the part, but my Scottish is obviously coming along.


Until next time.

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