And here's Part 2, to look back on in 2021:
1. You Build The Thing You Think You Are. Another live show! I was thinking about having a year off from making live shows, as last year's did quite well and I thought maybe I'd earned a break. Then Battersea Arts Centre offered me an artist's residency in February to develop a new show and I thought I should at least try to have an idea for a show to merit their support and suddenly landed on an idea that I couldn't let go of, and now I'm very excited about this new thing. It's another slightly theatrical, conceptual absurdist show, but one that's much more focused on me as myself telling stories about my life rather than keeping the truth hidden as the Mr Fruit Salad show did. I hope it'll be a really good thing - it's premiereing at VAULT Festival in February and will then be going to Leicester and Glasgow and probably ARGComFest and possibly Machynlleth and Cambridge before going back to Edinburgh, so watch this space for dates.
2. Some Things For The Radio. As I mentioned in my Part 1 blog, I'm going into this year with a specific big project to work on that's been commissioned by someone. I can't give details yet, but it's for the radio and will probably end up being the biggest, most high-profile thing I make this year. I'm very excited about it. I'll also be making a few little sketches for BBC Radio 4 Extra's The Comedy Club in January, which I hope might lead onto doing more regular stuff with that team. And finally, I'm also waiting for confirmation as to whether I'll be making a sort of informative lightly-comedic documentary for the radio with my dad, but I won't say too much about it until I know if it's happening. But possibly I'll be making three different things for the radio this year!
3. Some Other Scripted Projects. I'm excited about doing more radio work this year as it's a bit of a departure for me because so many of my ideas tend to be quite visual. However, I'm still working away at a lot of other scripted projects, for TV and online and so on, to keep that part of my brain working on things, and I hope to make more progress on those this year. As I mentioned before, I'm still working on Job Pig, the miniseries about the gig economy, and am thinking of just filming it as self-funded pilot for the internet if nobody goes for it because I like it and I'd like it to exist and be seen by people. Besides that, I'm also working on a sort of absurdist prank-show-esque project centred around Mr Fruit Salad and am starting to work on two new script ideas, one about Alec Guinness and one about an asexual couple. I'd love to have made some sort of taster-type thing for at least one of these by 2021, even if it's just a self-funded and self-produced one!
4. A Couple Of Podcasts. My convoluted, over-ambitious podcast project has sort of fallen off the rails, but a part of me hopes it might come back to life one day if I can get more comfortable with the podcast format in a more conventional way before trying to pull it to pieces. I'm very much learning to run before I can walk with that idea. So, this year I'd like to start to make in-roads into that world by being involved in one or two podcasts myself. I'm hopefully collaborating with John-Luke Roberts on a gameshow-esque podcast he's devised, in which I might be some sort of idiot sidekick or something, and I'm also talking to some people about making a podcast of my own about changing bits of your life. And on top of all that, Matthew Highton and I would quite like to make a time-travel podcast, so we'll see if any or all of these move forwards in 2020!
5. Still Trucking On With Making Things. All of the above are things which I'm at least partly reliant on external forces to get made, be they the whims of commissioners or the support of producers and so on. But as ever, I'd like to fill 2020 with lots of independent projects I make by myself, or with some key collaborators, just for the joy of exploring an idea and making a thing. Ali Brice and I will be releasing our nonsense sketch webseries fairly soon, and Matt and I have a couple more film collaborations in the pipeline, either things we recently filmed or things we'll shortly be filming. I hope these will be the first of lots of different indie projects to come out this year. If you've ever enjoyed any of the stuff I've put out online for free, any donations via Ko-Fi are enormously appreciated! All money donated is reinvested into making more things.
6. ACMS & Weirdos Again. Always love being part of these stupid gangs. Will continue to indulge in whatever silliness they get up to this year.
7. ACTING!!&&&&£$%^%"! Putting this in here again to remind myself to do more acting for other people's projects. Hope the universe reads it.
8. Just Having A Bit More Confidence, Actually. The big thing I feel going into this year is that, because last year went so well, it's the first year where I'm working from a firm understanding that I'm good at what I do and that I make things people enjoy, rather than feeling like I'm wrestling with my own competence and really trying to prove something, which is how I usually feel. I'd like to let that increased self-esteem inform the sorts of things I do and the sorts of things I allow myself to believe I can do. Last year I promised myself to not do big gigs ever again, but only festival shows. Then by the end of the year I realised that, in the right context, I'm quite good at doing gigs. Towards the end of 2019 I was put up for a presenting job which I was so convinced I'd be bad at that I called my agent crying asking her not to put me up for it. She told me not to be silly and to go to the audition, and I didn't get it, but the audition was fun and I was quite good. This year I'd like to remember that I'm good at things, and that while I might not be good at everything, it doesn't mean I have to impose such limitations on what I do and don't allow myself to have a go at, and I'd like to be more accepting of whatever comes my way.
Here's to 2020! I hope you all have a great one. xx