Despite resurging waves of self-doubt, debilitating insecurity and just plain ol' terror, I finally applied yesterday to the Vancouver Film School for their Writing for Film, TV & Interactive Media program. I should hear from them in a few weeks or so. My parents are sure I'll get in, but I'm not - they only take ninety students a year (three a classes a year with 30 students each) for their writing programs, and they're pretty elite so they get loads of applicants. I mean, KEVIN SMITH went there - yes, he dropped out to make Clerks, but STILL!
I'm still terrified - right now I keep thinking I know nothing about nothing. If I want to write a screenplay about someone who works in an office, I'm paralysed by the thought, "I know nothing about offices, I have no idea where to start researching offices, what do businessmen do again? What's a merger? What's a conglomerate? What stupid idiot doesn't know WHAT A MERGER IS??!!" And that's when my idea kind of dies.
And then there's that whole part about me having to finally get a full-time job, and keep it, for a year and half in order to make enough money for the tuition and living and travel expenses. I've never had a full-time job - I've had jobs that have come close to full-time hours, but I've never managed five eight-hour shifts in a row. Seriously. I'm a pampered upper-middle-class suburb princess and I have no idea how to live my life. I feel like I'm not really good at anything except writing.
And after the terrors of working scour through my mind, I have to deal with the horrors of living on my own for the first time ever in a city I've never been to. And I'll have to learn how to budget my meagre full-time earnings so that I don't starve halfway through the school year. And my parents won't be able to help unless it's an emergency because they have big plans of their own. So yeah, I'm scared. So even if I get accepted, that gives me two huge years of stress. And THEN there's the whole what-do-I-now problem once I graduate - if I don't get an internship, so I have to go back to my hometown or do I try to get a job in LA?
But I need to keep at this - I have no idea what else I would want to do with my life. I mean, I've considered other options - I've wanted to be a teacher, a librarian, a fantasy/romance novelist -- but I've realized that even if I became the best teacher, librarian, novelist in the world, I'd still come home from work to make up movies in my head while listening to music for hours on end. And I've done this for pretty much my entire life. At least if I'm a screenwriter, those movies have some chance of getting MADE, and of me getting PAID for them.
So, in between actual schoolwork (which I've been neglecting of late), I'm trying to keep myself psyched about screenwriting so I don't flip out and have a nervous breakdown before 2009 rolls around. Which means subscribing to screenwriter blogs and reading scripts from Drew's Script-O-Rama and trying to live independently (or at least pretend to) while still living in my parents' house. It's pretty hard right now - a large part of me doesn't want to get accepted to Vancouver Film School. But twenty years from now, I'll probably appreciate the stuff I learned.