New Year’s Resolutions

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Happy New Year! I’m feeling a lot of New Year’s Resolutions energy this year. Maybe there’s some astrological reason for this, or maybe I’m just getting slightly more sleep because my daughter has finally stopped waking up at 5:45? I don’t know, but I’m going with it. This morning, I got out of bed and SPRINTED around the park near my house. It was the equivalent of a cold water plunge in terms of getting my heart rate going. My goal is to do it every day for a few months to see if it helps get my mornings going a little more quickly.

I have a bunch of other NYE resolutions related to my kids and my schedule, but I won’t bore you with those. Instead, I will bore you with my blogging goals. I wasn’t sure if I would keep this site up but after almost two years of focusing my viewing habits on female directors and screenwriters, I feel like I have more to say. I’d like to reach a wider audience with this blog and to write more ambitious, wider-ranging essays about movies and popular culture.

With that in mind, here are my 2020 goals for Thelma & Alice:

1.  Start a Monthly Newsletter to Highlight New Releases by Female Directors

When I started this blog, I contemplated writing it in a newsletter format but I just wasn’t sure what the newsletter would look like, so I held off. But I’ve always thought there must be other people like me who are trying to watch more movies directed and written by women, and that it would be convenient if they had a list to choose from. It baffles me that Netflix hasn’t made this a category — unless they have? And the algorithm isn’t showing it to me? Anyway, I’m still not entirely sure what the newsletter will look like, but it will likely be a list of readily available movies directed by women, as well as links to writing on my blog and elsewhere.(By the way, I actually already have a newsletter about the fiction that I write, and which I send out every six months or so, and my husband thinks I should just change that one to a Thelma & Alice newsletter, but I don’t think that’s fair to the people on that mailing list, because they aren’t there for movie recommendations. So, I’ll have two newsletters, just to be inefficient and contrary.)

2.  Watch Three Movies Per Week

Last year, I averaged around two movies per week, so three per week would be a significant increase, but I think I can do it if I plan my viewing at the beginning of every week. Over the past year, I’ve lost a lot of potential movie sessions by dilly-dallying for a half-hour as I try to figure out what to watch. Then I think, ‘Oh, it’s too late, I’ll just Seth Meyers.’ Another thing that cuts into movie time is TV-watching, but these days, I’m a lot more inclined to watch a movie, because it has the virtue of being over after two hours. I also enjoy going out to the movies on my own on a weeknight and leaving my husband to put the kids to bed. It’s a break for me after a day of solitary writing and childcare, whereas watching TV feels like I’m stuck in the apartment.

3.  Attend a Film Festival

I’ve wanted to go to a film festival since I was in my twenties, just because I thought it would be fun, but now, after following festival programming for the past couple of years, I want to go because I realize there are some movies that you can’t see, otherwise. One example that comes to mind is Julie Delpy’s movie My Zoe. It debuted at the Toronto Film Festival last year and hasn’t played anywhere else. I don’t if or when it will get distribution. And I’m bummed.Since I live in NYC, the simplest way for me to go to a film festival would be to attend one of the local film festivals like the New York or Tribeca Film Festivals, so I’m going to look into that, but if anyone wants to send me to Sundance or Toronto, let me know 🙂

4.  Add Star Ratings

I am reluctantly adding star ratings to my posts, even though they make me kind of crazy and I’m constantly adjusting my letterboxd stars after a few weeks when a movie sits better or worse with me. I don’t like star ratings because they feel reductive and they mean different things to different people. But I realize that they do make the reviews a bit more legible, and that a lot of readers find them useful, so I’m going to give them a try.

5.  Join Twitter?

I’m on the fence about this one. I went on Twitter several years ago and I could never think of what to write or figure out how to socialize on it. I just felt old and out of the loop. But it seems like most reviewers are on it so maybe I’ll give it another try? It appeals to me as a way to follow film news.

6.  Write for Other Outlets

For the past year or so, I’ve been writing reviews for The Common, and it’s been great to work with an editor who pushes me to see more, say more, and ask more questions. So, I’d like to write for other sites, and pitch more essays about film. However, I’m also trying to finish a novel, so realistically, I won’t have time for that kind of ambitious writing until I’ve put that project to bed.

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