When you open a reply letter from a potential funder, the first thing you do is scan for the key words.
“Pleased to” or “Regret.” T’was the latter for me, this past holiday season.
In short, Edmonton Arts Council said no to my application for funding, but they left some comments and asked that I apply again for February. I will!
Alberta Foundation for the Arts’ response was also no, but with no comments (except for the non-letterhead, white page containing a bullet list of general things that were not so great about the bulk of the unsuccessful applications). This is okay (except for maybe the lack of letter head for that list — it looked like a juror had accidentally folded up a page of personal notes in with the rejection letter).
Before I continue, let me say how I am aware that the job of a jury member is a difficult one, and that I’m sure the AFA staff who handle the admin of the applications are really busy people. I appreciate the hard work that is done on all levels and have no qualms with not being selected for funding. I understand. Alberta is full of really cool people doing really cool projects, and I’m happy for those whose applications were successful.
But REALLY…did those letters have to be mailed out right before Christmas? Yes, it’s nice to get tasks out of the way before the holidays, but c’mon. The rejection letter came on December 24th. Christmas Eve.
I was in my bathrobe, hair in a towel, rushing to get the nalysnyky ready for baking and myself put together for a Christmas dinner and gift exchange. My roommate, who had just left the house, came back in when she checked the mail and saw the letter from AFA. She handed me the envelope. I sat at the edge of my bed, letter in hand, and she went to the kitchen to listen for my response.
I shed a few tears, knowing that funding was a long-shot anyway, and put the letter in my “to file” pile. I threw on some clothes and mascara, grabbed the nalysnyky from the kitchen, and went to Christmas dinner.
2013 has begun.
I took December off of blogging. You may not have noticed, but that’s okay! The fun stuff hasn’t really started yet. That said, I’m going hard with planning in the next few months, and so things will start picking up quickly.
I’ve begun contacting publishers to confirm dates for “house calls.” Huge thanks to Jennifer Murray, who teaches marketing at Humber and who runs www.porchlightconsulting.ca. She’s freely handed over any connections she has to help me reach some of the publishers I want to meet.
Next actions for the tour include getting my social media act together—The Facebook, The Twitter, The Instagram, will all eventually link to places where you can follow along the trip.