Posted by: michellemuldoon | August 3, 2011

Home Sweet Home

While summer was finally making an appearance in Vancouver, I was spending the end of July in the same place I’ve been spending it for the last four years, at the Action On Film International Film Festival (AOF) in Pasadena, CA.

This year marked a change for me. It was as if the experience had come full circle, and the event where I was once a bright-eyed new writer now welcomed me into its fold as a member of a wonderful team of volunteers and organizers.  I didn’t expect it to feel different, but it did, and now that I’ve had a chance to think about it, I realize that AOF has become the gift that keeps on giving.

I arrived in Pasadena just after noon, and checked into the Sheraton Hotel. From there, the theatre is easily a fifteen minute walk in the heat of midday. It didn’t seem to matter. As I walked, all I could think was, it felt like I was home. And the people who run it, have become family.

There were a number of new writers this year, and to my surprise several recognized me from the online promotional video. I hadn’t expected that. I realized at that point, that it was my turn to pay it forward the same way festival veterans had done so for me my first year. The new attendees were all great people, and I know that when they return in the years to come, they too will answer questions and help people find their way around. That’s the joy of the AOF. It’s a vibrant, caring, open community. That’s why so many of us keep returning.

The writers’ banquet was its usual spirited affair, with plenty of humour to go around courtesy of MC Christopher Canole. Chris is a writer I respect immensely, and you won’t find a better host for a room filled with writers. The last award to be given out was the inaugural Writers’ Room Invitational.  The scripts had all received filmed scene readings two days before, and we were all excited to see what the judges decided. I’m proud of my group for winning the first event with a scene titled, The Reel Job. You could say, I’m going out as a winner, as I won’t be running a group again.

We’re expanding for AOF 2012, with a total of twelve groups of five writers. Yes, we’re going from twenty-five writers, to sixty. It’s going to be a challenge to run, but I’m confident that our Head Writers are going to make the event something to remember. They’re all members of the AOF family, and that means they are a very special group of people.

To Del Weston, and everyone at AOF, I can only say thank you. Thank you for welcoming me, including me, and embracing me as a member of your community and your family. I can’t wait to return to AOF in 2012. It’s a special place, and it’s my second home.



  1. Hi Michelle,
    it was great to meet you & chat, at Deborah’s concert at Kit’s Beach last month. You are inspiring, & I can’t wait to see what your next projects will be!
    – Allison C.B.

    • Great meeting you, too, Allison. I can’t wait to read that you’re on your way with your project.


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