What made you pursue film making?
Honestly, I never really had any inclination to become a filmmaker. Since age eight, I have held the heart of an author. Therefore, I would do any day job that would allow me to write. Years ago, I interviewed an established NYC director who encouraged me to take my writings and turn them into screenplays. This led to the filming of my first movie, A Life Saver. Now I’m half way through a second production, A Hundred Looks of Love.
What advice would you give to aspiring authors?
I typically always have the same three tidbits to offer those wanting to be writers. First of all, never give up, regardless of the number of rejections or poor remarks made to you or about you. It is easy to get discouraged and disappointed, but you persist and push forward NO MATTER WHAT HAPPENS. Secondly, if you want writing to be your occupation, make sure that it is your passion. Some of the best writers in the world are 150% passionate about their work and their words. I always say if you get a tummy tickle as you are composing, you can be certain you have found your true passion. Lastly, under no circumstance should you be an author, because you strictly want to get wealthy. Trust me, I have been writing for 30 years now. You can do well, but almost all authors financially struggle to a set degree. The true payoff is in the lives that you touch through your written words.
Did you take any specific training to run a writing/editing business?
I had elected to attend UW-Milwaukee and study Journalism. However, at the time I enrolled, I was married with children and held a full- time job. This became overwhelming to me and my responsibilities at home eventually outweighed my education. I did go on to continue writing and publishing for 20 years thereafter, thus, I brought hands-on experience to each of my clients. If you asked me personally what is best for business, I would have said both a four-year degree and life experience. However, I have no regrets and am honored to have such sensational children as an end result.
What films have been the most inspiring or influential to you and why?
Forever have I been a fan of various Old Hollywood films, as they are so simple, yet special in so many ways. Charlie Chaplin has had a significant effect on my life, as he often hid his pain using humor, which is not dissimilar to myself. He wanted to hold creative control of his work and was driven to make deep statements on sizable screens to affect his audiences. This is indeed what I set out to do in my professional career as well. So, I would say he is a major influence on me, as is Nicholas Sparks. He knows how to tell a truly touching love story over and over. In particular, The Notebook being the most noteworthy. I myself want that type of love – where you just know that you will love only that one for a lifetime.
What helped you get where you are today and what steps did you take?
Well, being where I am now required having an exceptional amount of time and tons of patience. I spent nine years working with some of the best in the field, getting some great advice and building solid relationships in PR and media. I also did a good deal of favors for many in the industry, as it does become about tradeoffs and creative collaborations. Much studying and serious research about publishing, podcasting and putting together film was done. I also spent hours shadowing fellow peers so as to perfect my own craft. Most of all, I would not be who I am or where I am without every single person that I have interviewed, inspired or initiated a relationship with, personally or professionally. All of these people helped me become the success story that many say I am today. Most recently, my partner has helped me see my best sides and encourages me to strive for bigger and better things. He convinces me that I can do incredible things and lucky for me that he helps me accomplish some of those goals.
Any other upcoming projects you would like to share with readers?
If you know me, then you realize that I am always involved in an infinite number of projects at the same time. However, as of now, the two biggest things involve our clothing line and the classic cinema film festival. We are now looking to partner up with small businesses and children’s charities. For every $20 shirt sold up to 300 shirts, the $5 profit goes directly to those chosen to be a business beneficiary. This is going on from now until the end of 2019. The website for our line MG Frocks, is below. Secondly, we are now accepting submissions for our festival, Bedford Falls. All entries must be entirely filmed in black and white, can be of any genre and no run time restrictions. It is a flat fee of $25.00 and the link to submit is below.
What do you want your supporters to know about you?
Well, the me people see at 50 is so very different than the young woman. I want them to know that I show you all of me, so that you see I am not perfect nor polished. I do cry, I do struggle and I do get scared. Despite my transparency, I truly do have tragedy that I hide. I hope you see that I want to relate to the average person because, I am just that, average. Lastly, I find it my duty to use my gift for writing to help inspire, motivate, educate and entertain others. I must use my words to make others see their “special”.
Name three things on your bucket list?
I have had a bucket list on my refrigerator for roughly 20 years. I look at it far less than I used to when younger, but it is still important to me that I tackle each item. The #1 item is to go to Italy with “the one”. I have always felt this country is the most romantic, rich in arts and culture and is ripe with colorful characters. #2 is ironically what most say should be most important: learn to love myself. When you come from a home lacking in acceptance and lumped full of abuse and abandonment. You spend your whole life learning how to not let that change or crush you. So, I want to learn to love the maiden in the mirror, so to speak. Finally, #3 is to write one final book. I published one book of poetry, an inspirational children’s book and a narrative biographical book that centered around some of my radio show guests.
What must be seen or experienced in person to really appreciate it?
Honestly it might sound hokey, but any parent/child or couple that deeply love each other. It is one thing to tell someone you love them or hear from other sources. Witnessing the wonder of unconditional and uninhibited love as it occurs is the only way to appreciate its power and presence in the lives of others.
Has there been an incidence that has changed your life forever?
Without hesitation, I would have to say the birth of my children. I was a very lost, a lonely person for a long time and they helped to heal the hole in my heart. My sons have shown me the meaning of true courage and compassion, as well as how to not take yourself too seriously. My daughter is continuously reminding me that I am remarkable and radiant as I am, flaws and all. They also encourage me to be my best and hold my hand when I am at my worst. I find my identity in part within them and hope they see how truly precious they are to me.
If you could change one thing about the world what would it be and why?
I think that it would have to be to remove the selfishness that so many souls seem to carry in their huge hearts. I have befriended a huge amount of amazing people in my 50 years of living, but so many people have become so self-centered and self-involved. The whole me, me mentality leads to such sadness in society. More divorces/breakups, suicides and overall struggles. Wouldn’t life be wonderful if we just cared for and held compassion for every person we meet?
How can everyone keep in contact with you on social media?
Honestly, I have too many places for people to look for me! Listed below are the main locations to keep track of me relative to radio, my films/film festivals, and writing.
Creative Writing Business: http://cinssweetcreations.yolasite.com/
Art is Alive Film Festival: https://artisalivefilmfestival.weebly.com/
Bedford Falls Film Festival: https://filmfreeway.com/BedfordFallsFilmFestival
Radio Show: https://www.blogtalkradio.com/cins-chat-corner
Clothing Line: https://www.mgfrocks.com/