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Festival? How was festival this year? you ask. Well!

Let me start here:
Behold the perfect tool for your sustenance, the humble crockpot.

No, wait – lemme start here:
emoji RK

Rachel dearest sent that off from the bus on her way out of Worcester on Tuesday morning, and I blubbed some happy tears when I saw it.

Nonono – wait – listen:

I think I didn’t manage to put down 2016’s show until almost a year after the fact – there was just So Much. Too much, even. Dearest Bill’s heart surgery on October 5th, the flash floods day before show that washed out Nick’s, all that focus on waiting for the power to come back & the last-minute move over to HPCC. It was a rush, for sure, but really, let’s not do it like that again, k? And even with the grant reimbursement* wrapped up and the trophies mailed & the prize payments made, and the 2017 logo set up & stickers ordered, and the new season ready to go, it still sort of dragged on as this stressful pulsing echo, like, for months.** Until about a week before festival, I wasn’t even sure I was ready. I had nightmares about being pregnant in Patagonia (which, of course, was part of Peru, whut) & stamping around about it, y‘all.

And then Rabbit Heart this year? It was AMAZING. Ah-May-ZING.

Some stuff we learned last year was that you really can’t stuff 70+ people into Nick’s without a crowbar and some mad engineering skillz.*** So, armed with that knowledge, we intentionally split the 2017 show, and put together a matinee this year – which I panicked about for a hot minute (Will people come? If I throw a party in the middle of the afternoon, will people come to it? AND WHAT ABOUT BRUNCH?!) until I realized that it gave us o,somuchmoreroom! to show more films (\o/), and that lots of people nabbed those tickets because they were stoked (!!) and wanted to see more poetryfilm! And they came! We threw a party and people came! And they enjoyed the stuffing out of it! Hello, I am over the moon remembering all the smiles and hugs.

And then – and then – AND THEN! The awards ceremony! Our emcees for the night, Tony Brown & Melissa Mitchell, omg – these two glamorous bastards – I need a moment to get my marbles back in the jar here, because WOW.

Tony and Missy red carpst

Let us all fan ourselves off a minute here -whew!- Ok, steampuk became the theme for the night, Missy was armed to the teeth (check out that hawt whip, y’all), and the tone was set from the moment they stepped on the stage. So. GOOD.

The caliber of film this this year made me wicked proud – I’m absolutely thrilled with the judges’ picks.† I can’t even pick the most stand-out-y of the bunch, because I kept falling in love over and over. You should go check out the 2017 Finalists Page and the R<3 YouTube page to see – grab a coffee and your comfiest hoodie, ‘cos you’ll want to be there a while ♥

All that said, I need to tell you about the winner of Best Overall Production – Rachel Kann’s Dancing Lesson (Or How to Let the Words Leave You), made with Brad Cooper & Atom Smith – even just thinking about it right now makes all the little hairs stand up on my arms. Because you need to know: the women in that film with Rachel? Dancing like the queens they are? They are not professional dancers or actors. That’s Rachel’s Zumba class. (And I was told the shoot was a dream, and the hardest part of the whole she-bang was getting the colored Holi powder out of the sets three months after the fact. Which, of course, amuses me to no end.) RACHEL’S ZUMBA CLASS! Here – check it out.

There was so much dance this year! And it brought me to a place of joy I didn’t even know about. Sure, interpretive dance is an easy mark for eyeroll – we’ve all been to that one poetry reading, right? But this year, watching the subs roll in was a total game/perspective-changer – we got a ton of really good interpretive dance poetryfilms. The more interpretive dance I saw over the year, the more I realized how much I just love the stuff! And to be able to show films at the showcase matinee? Like Jeremy Hahn and Stephen Beitler’s Dances for the End of the World Ch 2, and videopoem I Am Life/ Soy Vida by Jose Alirio Rojas? It just set me soaring.

But but but! But omg, also the people! My very favorite thing about festival happened again this year – it became a gathering for some of my very favorite people. And getting to meet filmmakers and people new to the festival just leaves me bursting all over. I got to meet the winners of the WCPA-sponsored Shoots! Youth prize, Luz Emma Cañas & Ella Quinn who came in from NYC, I got to meet the producer of the Best Smartphone Production, Eduardo Guerra who came in from NY, I got to meet Nick who came out from CT for his friend Aleksandr Kirienko’s film, and the winners of The Marble Collection’s fundraiser raffle, and the folks who won the Sprinkler Factory’s raffle,†† and I got to meet director Brad Cooper and his lovely friend Linda, and I got to meet Aisha Naseem’s parents and their housemate Alex, and everyone was so lovely! And I got to reconnect with friends who traveled in from afar! Filmmakers Cassidy Parker Knight & Jeff Knight came in from Austin TX, and Rachel came in from LA, and Eric Darby came in from San Francisco, and Linda Jackson and filmmakers Aisha Naseem and Adom Balcom came in from western MA – and friends who came in from right here in town – Molly McArthur and Kerry McGurl who were our perfect ushers, Tony & Missy (natch), #TeamSalli, Sarah Meigs & Alli Jutras (our badass interns for 2017), and Birgit Straehle (who gilded our first place trophy!) & Luis Antonio Fraire, and two of last year’s exquisite judges, April & Ted Desmond, Isaac Baron and Sylvia Bagaglio, and Rushelle Frazier and Jenith Charpentier and Angeline Bilotta who were judges this year, and Gary Hoare, who’s been a finalist and winner at R<3 three times now, and Angel Gonzalez, who’s been a judge twice, and Bob Gill (who judged our first year) & Ted Blackler, and and and and AND! It all happened in the company of family – what warm delight to share this with my dear husband Bill, and my brother Allan and my father-in-law Charlie††† who have been pulling this boat along with me for four years now (omg, fam – you are The Best).

And for real, Nick’s took such good care of us – huge kudos and thank yous to Nicole & Sean & the rest of the staff on Saturday for making such good space for us and treating us like a Very Big Deal. They made sure we had the sound and projector up and running, and a place for our red carpet, and that the popcorn & drinkies & treats flowed (Have you ever had a pretzel there?? Seriously. If you haven’t, you’re totally missing out, so you should do that).

What I mean to say is that this year tore me open in all the good ways. All this to say Thank You.

xoxox,
Apple

*Thank you WAC & MCC!
This program is supported in part by a grant from the Worcester Arts Council, a local agency which is supported by the Massachusetts Cultural Council, a state agency.
**I’m 100% sure some of that had to do with the US elections. That garbage storm is still cascading horrific on the daily.
***So the basement over at HPCC actually solved that problem >.>
†It wasn’t until after festival that I realized that all our winning films were made by women \o/ There’s something here that I have been struggling to put my finger on over the last few years – what is it about poetryfilm that lends women such good license, that allows them to give themselves permission to excel? Jenith & I keep spilling coffee over and spending time on this topic, and it never ceases to keep me feeling alive in my own skin.
††You have an osm arts org that wants fundraiser tickets? Talk to me!
†††Who totally saved our bacon last year with the whole venue thing. Thank you, Charlie!

ps! Omg, guise – LITERALLY, as I was writing this, my phone chirped and told me it made a movie memory out of the bazillionty pictures (ok, 372) I took at Rabbit Heart on Saturday – oh iPhone, you amazing creature, you. ♥ And it’s totally darling. Here it is –

pps – that song that everyone at festival can’t get out of their head? It’s by Erin K, and it’s amazing. Here, have a listen –

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doll20parts_zpsoei23o2mSo… Looking at this project from the front and kind of far away, without anything in hand and just the paper dollies stop-motion trailer from last year under my belt, it looked like simply A Good Time. A little closer up, sitting on the orange rug in the office, surrounded by ripped open bags of secondhand Barbi, Bratz, and a variety of other unidentified dolls* from the thrift store, it still looked like fun, albeit somewhat complicated fun – there was a problem to solve, and I generally like a problem to solve, especially when it involves clay, dictionary pages, ink, and glue. And over the course of a few weeks, with the generous application of all of those (delicious) supplies** our models emerged at last, rabbit-headed and incredibly tippy,*** but creepily darling in their own right.

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And then I had no idea what to do about it. Because that’s kind of how I work, right? I write novels without outlines,† I push things into motion sometimes (ok, often) with only a general plan, and I have been known to go on a spending spree at the craft store just because I want to touch all the things to find out how they feel. A friend once asked me what I thought my defining drive/emotion was, and for me it came down to Curiosity. This is to say, my inner critic is strong, but she also often gets squashed down by my inner six-year-old, who just wants to know How Things Work.

Ok, so I had a clue: I knew that Picasa would crunch pictures for me once they were amassed. I knew that we would need something stable to hold the camera while we took a brazillionty†† pictures for Picasa to crunch. I knew that lighting was going to be A Thing. And I knew that keeping track of two figurines, specifically, which leg of which figurine was going in which direction during micro-movements, was going to be a little tricky.††† I also knew that we were going to need to build a set that not only looked nice, but accommodated some really top-heavy movie stars.‡ And so, armed with an idea, we dug in to make a trailer.

Here’s how it went, bullet-point style:

– We opted for the iPad to take the pictures, because it does a better job than my phone. Also, I do not own any high-end camera equipment.

– We moved two six-foot tables into our space – one for the set, and one parallel to it for a workspace & camera. There was about a foot and a half between the two. We masking-taped the floor around the feet to mark the tables in case any of us bumped them, so we could move them back if need be. Also we duct taped a couple of the feet down and prayed it wouldn’t pick up the finish upon removal. (We got lucky there \o/)

– Books books books. And tiny birds. And dominoes. And the tiny model trees I had always wanted to buy but had no reason to buy, and a birdhouse, and some bitty paper apples. Dictionary paper, a watch key, and a bunch of fat produce rubberbands, cut into strips, to keep the slidy stuff in place – we built a set. A really cool set \o/
PRO TIP: Take reference shots. Things will move as you move all the, well, moving parts. It’s really good to know where they were before they moved. Also, if you have cats where you work, reference shots are invaluable. (SPOILER: we have 3 cats. We also employed a barricade overnight because Gunther likes the way Barbi hands feel against his fancy fancy teeth. Project board worked really well. G’bless the science fair, y’all.)

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barricade_zpscjkbcmvq

– We set up lamps. We broke a lamp. We agreed we needed more lighting. We bought two cheap clip lamps (cheap clip lamps are The Best! Just, you know, make sure you have something to clip them to.) and a pack of 100-watt bulbs from HoDo. We moved in a couple power strips. We adjusted and adjusted and adjusted, and sighed and decided to humor one particular set of shadows in favor of dulling a big shiny reflection on the pretty green wall. In retrospect, we probably could have benefited from a string of LED Christmas tree lights taped strategically behind the set.

– We stuck the iPad on a couple books and boxes (and a tiny side table), and strapped that mess together with masking tape.
PRO TIP: I picked up a pack of foam popsicle stick looking things, initially to place between books to keep them from sliding. They were sort of ok for that, but not as good as the rubberbands. What they were REALLY good for, tho’, was as shims – we used them to keep pretty much everything level. And by everything, I mean the camera setup – we slid some under the iPad case, we slid some under the tiny side table, we popped a couple in under a book when the shot looked a little off.

– We applied generous amounts of modeling clay to the feet of our dollies to provide some support. This really worked out really badly. We revised our approach.
PRO TIP: if you want to get something to stay in place, the intuitive leap to modeling clay is great only in theory. Pick up some sticky-tac. You know, the stuff you use to hang up posters without cocking up the semi-gloss on your walls? It is AMAZING in these situations. Truly, I cannot praise the stuff enough for on-set shenanigans – with the sticky-tac we were able to make our models go where we wanted without having to employ balancing tricks; we just sort of, well, stuck stuff to other stuff where we wanted them to be and shot quickly. Hello, I ♥ sticky-tac.

– Team Salli posed the models, ducked out of the frame, and I shot. Pose, duck, shoot, pose, duck, shoot, pose, duck, shoot. Sometimes I posed and ducked and one of them shot. We did that for roughly 250 pictures – Good Times.

– And I let Picasa crunch the pictures: you select your pix from the files, tell it to make a movie, use the time-lapse option around 1/9 (play with it – you may find you like 1/10 or 1/8), and export that business. Afterward I popped it into Windows Movie Maker and added some music and fades, and voila! My friends, we have a trailer =)

For more information about Rabbit Heart Poetry Film Festival, check out www.rabbitheartpoetry.com

Also! If you’re poking around looking for info on making a film with practically no budget, check out the Rabbit Heart Pinterest page, How-To Tuesday for Rabbit Heart, where we’ve collected all kinds of good links for you <6

***

*Some of which were unidentifiable because they were missing a head, or were only a head. The thrift store sells them in plastic bags that seem to have been scooped roughly out of a bin marked Random Doll Parts. Or maybe a dumpster behind a daycare. Anyway, the contents are all mismatched and really ought to be washed down before too much handling. I, natch, spilled them out on the rug and decided to wash my hands really well afterward. Before I vacuumed.

**And paperclips (to hold on the ears). And a multitool (gogo Leatherman!) There’s most of a Skipper doll inside the little bun – some bits needed to be trimmed. Honestly, the most difficult part of the transformation was getting the hair off the dollies so that the air-dry Crayola clay would stick to the doll.
And on that note, I must once again mention (I know you’ve heard me say this before): Behold the humble glue stick. Your materials almost never need to be expensive, they just need to do the job. Stuff we used for this project included wood glue, an $8 glue gun, Elmer’s glue sticks, used toys, a sheet of sticky tack, roughly-used dictionaries, a couple of $6 clip lamps (the bulbs were pricier than the lamps!), and kids’ craft air-dry clay. Stay simple, y’all.

***Some of this is down to the user. I was never a kid who played with dollies. Our interns, Alli & Sarah (whom I have been known to refer to fondly as Team Salli) were able to get them both to stand up with far less stress than I.

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†Admittedly, the last one took me 10 years to complete. I’m not proud of that, I just can’t seem to stick to an outline. In my own defense, I did write four short stories and a chapbook worth of poems that applied to the same universe in that time.

††FWIW, there are easily a Brazillion Portugese speakers on the Ragnaros realm in World of Warcraft. And I have pugged with a fair number of them.

†††This is where having two interns was particularly great – one dolly per intern really helped!

‡Sidenote: there’s a serious riot grrrl rant in here somewhere about how dolls marketed to boys, action figures, stand up better than dolls marketed to girls. But since I did happen to add a shitton of weight & counter-intuitive-balanced ears to the figures (not to mention, encased Skipper in an super unnatural position inside that small bunny), this is probably neither the time nor place.

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Sister! Sister! It’s poetry movie time again! Submissions for Rabbit Heart Poetry Film Festival are now open. Deadline: July 1st.

Once again, we’re planning to be at the lovely Nick’s in October – on the 21st there will be a matinee in the afternoon, and in the evening, a gala awards ceremony & viewing party \o/

Full rules right here.


I just – I don’t even know where to start, sister. This week – omg, this week. You know what? Really, this month.


Do I start with the part where everything broke? Because everything broke. Will Dearest is home now, recovering from open heart surgery on the 6th, did I forget to mention? He’s on the mend, thank gawd, and I’m watching, because I need to see him heal – I need it like water and food and sleep.*

Then there was the porch fire. And then there was the debit card that stopped working for no good reason while Will was in the hospital (and started working again the next day for no good reason). And the PayPal that was caught on the verge of being hacked and so the card had to be cancelled & reordered. And then there was the bit where the number keys on the Chromebook I use for Rabbit Heart Poetry Film Festival stopped working and I replaced it only to get it home and find out the new one didn’t work (or the other two at Best Buy).**

lantern-light-at-nicks-by-sarah-g

photo credit Sarah Guimond

Then on Friday there was a flash flood that soaked down poor Nick’s  – our venue for Rabbit Heart – and took out the power. But the power came back on right before six! And then, as we were celebrating the lights being on, there was an explosion (I am not kidding – a big BOOM and smoke and smell and panic) down the block and the power went back off.***

But Rachel Kann who represents the stuffing out of R♥ in all the Best Ways, and who held my hand all day & made me know that everything would be all right, and then carried the carpet out of my office to the new venue, and then reminded me that I need to eat too
But Will Dearest and his dad and their Good Ideas and Hadwen Park Congregational Church
But Will Dearest again, who ripped my ass out of the freaking fire

But Nicole & the staff at Nick’s who not only took care of us Hard and Deep, but sent us off with popcorn while they waited in the candlelight with flyers and maps and directions (and we made plans not only for next year, but for maybe in-between too!)
But Christian who hauled the bigass amp to and from the venue like it was Just Something He Does
But Molly who moved stuff and took pictures and breathed with me
But April & Ted Desmond who picked up food and mobilized like the sharp side of an end-raid two-man bossfight and then took pictures, even
But Tony img_3099Brown and Melissa Mitchell who hauled and organized and set up and emcee’d and still remained glamorous like omg
But Our Man Cub and his Sweetie who moved tons of stuff, cut things down, drilled holes, punched tickets, set up, and brought me coffee (because my kid and his friends? Are abso-fucking-lutely AMAZING human beings and anyone who has shit to say about “those millennials” can screw right off RAWR)
But Aisha who sent good energy all the way from South Dakota, and opened the show in the best way I could never ever do justice to myself  Read the rest of this entry »

 

We need to talk about Worcester FilmWars. 72 hours to make a short film, what? Wait – YES!

filmwars20screen20bill_zpsnapyrebfWhen I heard about Worcester Film Wars I got really excited – there’s always been a little part of me that wanted to do a fast and furious film festival entry. I’m the kind of person who likes to binge-do stuff – get the ducks sorted and then just, you know, plow though the project.* Stuff like the Choreofest that Carolyn Jepsen let us all peek into last month as she catalogued it in pictures, gets me weak in the knees. I love watching that kind of super fast collaborative thing, and I have loved the idea of being part of one even more. So when Grime announced that they were putting this together, I wanted in like whoa.**

Best thing about this filmy business? Working with people I love. Jenith Charpentier & I had worked on proof-of-concept film for Rabbit Heart all the way back in the beginning and it was a total treat, so I was absolutely stoked to work with her again on filmstuff. April Desmond & I have worked on a variety of projects from layout to raiding and enjoyed the process deeply – and, sister, her eye for the camera o! o! o! We rounded out our team with Will Dearest, who, you know, I like just a little bit,*** and April’s hubby, Ted, also wonderful, whom we didn’t even know would be available until a few days before – bonus! See what happened there? Four Rabbit Heart Poetry Film Festival judges and the producer – oh, hello, no doubt we’re making a poetryfilm.

setup20table20sou_zpsu1g9gstuWhat you’re looking at here are five Very Busy People – we started a Facebook message thread and then kinda forgot about things until the prop swap a week later, because, well, life. Teenagers, dogs, work, impending business trips, one impending wedding, groceries – alla that nosed in. Will had a doctor’s appointment on Friday morning to have some cardiac pictures taken and would be guaranteed loopy until at least noon, so we decided to start shooting on Friday at 2.

Jenith lent her poem, Alice’s Lament, already recorded and ready to go. She also brought some teenagers to the table, which was wonderful, as all the adults involved are all a little camera shy. At the last minute Our Man Cub walked in the door to round out our cast – whom we would have for roughly 2 hours.

Read the rest of this entry »


O! O! O! August 28th was Audrey’s last official day as the Very First Rabbit Heart Poetry Film Festival Intern and Marketing Co-conspirator* and I’m already missing her. From making a stopmotion trailer for the festival,*** to getting out and about to investigate Worcester† and talk to people making wonderful things happen, to helping build this year’s trophies, to reaching our goal of selling out the venue before September 15th,†† I can say with sureity that we kicked some butt as a duo.

This has been a truly phenominal summer pulling the ends together and getting Rabbit Heart out into the world, and I’ve enjoyed it to the teeth. Thank you, Clark LEEP Program, for pairing us up!

You’ll still see more of Audrey – she’s opted to stick around as much as she can (classes are in swing now, so she’s working around that schedule and her two -2!- jobs), just not as much. There’s also still more 100 Delightful footage that has to be crunched, so her smiling face will grace the R♥ YouTube channel now and again,††† which makes me super happy. In the meanwhile, please wish her a fantastic senior year, and look for her at the festival, where you can tell her in person what a wonderful addition to the Doublebunny crew she made over the summer!

***

*Gunther will tell you that Audrey was not actually the very first Rabbit Heart Intern, as he’s been here all the while, and he long ago claimed the title of First Chair Intern for himself. Of note: when Audrey was in the office, he refused to do any work, occasionally sauntering through a room, muttering under his breath the phrase, “Second Chair Intern,” with side-eye and all, and then trotting off to sulk under a bed. Such is the life of a tuxedo cat** in a casual office environment.
** White shirts and fur coats: Gunther says it never goes out of style.
***
APPLE: First order of business – let’s take apart this photo enlarger and build a rig!
AUDREY: Um… Ok!
cut to –
APPLE: Which leg is moving forward again?
AUDREY: …
APPLE: …
cue nervous laughter, then gut giggles
† First open mic! First poetry slam! First Coneys! First roller derby! Aquatic animal statuary! Absinthe!
†† How about by the 5th? Whaaaat?? \o/
††† 100 Delightful is down for a nap now that Labor Day has passed – but do not despair! The Worcester featurette will still happen, just not on a regular schedule again until subs close for 2017.

Oh, PopUp Gallery , Worcester, you are so cool! You’ve hosted all kinds of seriously osm events, from art showings to dance exhibitions, to spoken word events. Which is to say, thank you WCC for making the space available to the city! GoGo #woopopup !

On August 7th, Bob Gill put together this really great reception for poets who were published in the last year, and I was super excited to hear about it* – Tony Brown, Victor Infante, Judith Ferrara, Joe Fusco Jr., Carol Mays, James Nicola, Catherine Reed, Christian Relfsteck, Susan Roney O’Brien, and Richard Fox** were on the roster. Audrey and I took a trip down on a perfect Sunday afternoon*** and enjoyed the celebration – we also got a chance to talk with Bob, and with Mark Thomas, half the organization behind the wonderful space in the old Printer’s Building.

 

***

*If not amused by the insistance to bring a chair ~.o
**Richard has been unwell of late – Gary Hoare stepped in to read his work and totally did him proud.
***The humidity didn’t hit until later that night \o/

A couple years ago I woke up with the startling realization that I’ve lived in Worcester, MA longer than I’ve lived in any other place. But as the saying goes, If the cat has kittens in the oven, you don’t call them biscuits. I’m not a native – I still get lost while driving here, I’m unclear on all the prideful fuss around that statue on the Common, I do a crap job of using wicked as a modifier,* and y’all is still my favorite pronoun.** I’m not entirely sure I know how to Worcester yet.

So anyway – with all that in mind, I started a blog project with the aim of not just understanding this city in which I live, but also maybe to fall in love with it a little bit, too: The 100 Delightful Things in Worcester project began in 2013 (2012?) And then, um… well, I kind of fell out of love with the project – stuff got in the way, and work got super busy, and I started Rabbit Heart Poetry Film Festival, and just, I dunno – I lost track of the whole thing around item 6.***

But now it’s back! As I’ve been working on R♥ it never fails – someone asks me if it wouldn’t be better throw this affair in Boston. And my hackles go up, because, you know, I live here – and also, you know, Worcester deserves nice things. And so, with the help of fantastic R♥ intern Audrey, the 100 Delightful project is up and running again, this time on film (because home movies are fun, y’all! Wicked fun, even).

We figured we’d start things off right with a quick Sunday afternoon trip to the venue for Rabbit Heart, Nick’s Bar & Restaurant, at 214 Millbury Street.


*Seriously – watch when it comes out of my mouth. Generally it’s followed by a blink and a blush. It gives me Feelings. Feelings like I’m doin’ it wrong.
**Shortly after I moved here I worked waiting tables. It never failed to amuse paying customers when I would ask, “Y’all all set?” after setting down the food.
***Seed to Stem – which has actually moved since the blog post. They’re over at Crompton Place now.

Mercy! Has it really been 17 days since Rabbit Heart Poetry Film Festival wrapped? It feels like it was just this last weekend, and I am still absolutely flying from it. We had a spectacular weekend celebrating poetry on film – you can see all the good stuff here (pictures) and here  (the finalists) and here (all the films), if you weren’t able to make it, or if you want to relive it (highly recommended! Omg, so much good work!)

I feel like I came out of this year better than I went into it – it’s been a slammin’ year, y’all.* And I was about a week behind the whole time. And I got super ambitious halfway through when I realized we had a glut of Very Good Submissions, so I decided we needed a second day of showings, but hadn’t really thought about the work that entailed (oops). So what I’m saying is that, whoa – I’m kinda proud of myself for getting it together on time.

But more than that, I’m still awash in all the feels about the the festival itself. In a nutshell, even with a couple of late-presenting snafus, it went off beautifully, and I was thrilled with the shows. But more than that, I was thrilled with the connections that happened.

Friends came from across state and out of state. There were lots of hugs, and people got to reunite and to meet each other – some of them who had learned about each other just online. Makers met makers and talked about the things that makers talk about when you get them together. It was more than I could have hoped for.**

Looking down the barrel of the afterparty,*** I very much expected that when everything was put to bed this year, I would be exhausted. But instead I put it down feeling invigorated, inspired, and excited.

One of the things I do at festival is catch as much footage as I can of people talking about the festival. Mostly it’s because I love a souvenir (and also, it’s for grant apps), and there’s nothing nicer than a moving snapshot, hello. But also, it’s because I am a curious creature who’s generally engaged in some research, and primary sources are the best thing in the world for research purposes. So I asked questions – I asked about process, and about favorites, and about what it’s like to be a judge or a filmmaker, or an audience member. I asked What made you do this? I asked How does it feel on this side of the curtain? I asked What do you think about the short film format? I asked How did you pick your collaborators? And it turns out that I know some super smart people who have super smart answers, and I was bowled over, and humbled, and overjoyed to hear the answers.

Read the rest of this entry »

September has come and hit me full in the face, and I sincerely cannot believe the shit I’ve gotten myself into. Where do I even start?

Rabbit Heart Poetry Film Festival is rolling along smoothly, at least. We’re coming up on the last little bit of judging this week, and then it’s on to let the finalists know that their films are moving on. Which is probably the most exciting part of this, outside of the actual festival dates – really, is there anything finer than handing out good news?

In the meanwhile, there are the details: tickets go on sale tomorrow, there’s a final judging party on Tuesday, the shows need to be curated and the program printed, posters need to be made, the trophies need to be constructed… And Sunday Rabbit Heart is the spotlight feature at the 7Hills Poetry reading with Angelique Palmer, so today and tomorrow are going to be a story of mad scrambling to put gear together. Next year we hire an intern, hello. #somanydetails

Read the rest of this entry »

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