Posted by Karen "Kay" Ross

Gather round and let me tell you about the year I fell in love with gift-giving again. About five years ago, my family decided we would save money by only buying gifts for the kids and we would do something “homemade” for the adults. We tried compiling a family cookbook, we assembled DIY food and baking mixes, and then we landed on a goldmine - the annual Family Film Festival. No, the films we screened were not all a family genre, but rather that the only ones who could participate were family.

It. was. EPIC! Suddenly, where we once felt strained to give, we now felt an overwhelming sense of abundance. We recognized our need to still exchange “gifts”, but honored what we were able to give. Where we could not give money, we doubled-down on time, effort, and creativity. Now, I don’t expect anyone else to pick up this trend, but I think the applicable lesson is that it is worth it to be generous with what you have than scarce with what you don’t.

As the new year approaches, consider what you can contribute to the Stage 32 Community and thus give to others. How can you offer your time or attention to someone else in order to invest in their journey they others have invested in you. And without a doubt, that generosity comes back to you in beautiful and unexpected ways.

Our top posts today embody the creative cycle generated from such generosity - reflect, adapt, change, and innovate. I can’t imagine better breeding grounds for starting strong in the new year! Lounge posts are always meant to give creatives from around the world a way to share and lift each other up. May you be lifted while you lift. Here are the Top 10 posts you should jump in on and comment on!


Top 10 Lounge Posts The Gift of Giving


1. Staying Above the Fold

  • How have you adapted your business to “stay above the fold”?

2. Screenwriting or Storyboarding for Slapstick Comedy

  • This animator asks which is more important for this genre, with a screen test/animatic example.

3. Authoring & Playwriting: Sharing Recent Knowledge 

  • A generous offer to share a recent lesson so others can learn from her experience.

4. Authoring & Playwriting: Self-Editing Software

  • Generating ideas on the best software for writing, not just screenwriting!

5. Cinematography: Keeping Film Stock Alive

  • A fantastic shoutout to a film creative who is doing work to save the medium of filming on film stock.

6. Choosing a Camera for a Dramatic Short  

  • A reflection on selecting the right camera for a short film (and whether or not it matters).

7. Obtaining a Script

  • An important reflection on the relationship between director and writer after optioning their script.

8. A Stock Footage Film

  • An innovative way to approach filmmaking!

9. The Ideal Synopsis for Project Submission

  • An interesting debate on what is needed for a Project Submission.

10. The Key to 500 Podcast Episodes

  • An inspiring post to encourage you to keep going!


Honorable Mention:

The Low Budget Film Continues! More Production Stills Added! 

Table Read w/ Jill

  • Our next Writer’s Room Virtual Table Read is coming up and they still need talent!


About Karen "Kay" Ross

Stay Connected Inspired and Creative with the Stage 32 Lounges
K. Ross is a graduate of Colorado Film School and Regis University in Denver, Colorado. She’s a screenwriter, actor/director, and producer based out of Los Angeles. Originally from the DC area, she’s written and produced several short films, hosts "The Pre-Pro Podcast" aimed at teenagers interested in media, and is currently developing a slate of new material, including a coming-of-age TV Pilot set at the Renaissance Festival and a feature film about how "compassion fatigue" affects everyday people. She enjoys acting, directing, and being interviewed, just like her fun-loving mentor, Kevin Smith. She loves opportunities to work with inclusive, diverse, and driven professionals.


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