We worked very dilligently to complete our application for the new Screen-Based Content Initiative from the Ontario Government. As i mentioned earlier, Captain Ontario drummed up two million dollars to fund not a final project, but a development toward a final project. This is great news, because often times, getting that ball rolling is the most difficult part.
The Ontario Media Development Corporation, who are reviewing the apps and doling out the money, have been dropping hints along the way that this fund will be “very competitive”. Eligible candidates include those companies who need the funds to develop screen-based content (ie film, television, interactive, video games, radio [when said radio is behind a window], screen door manufacturers, olympic athletes subjected to drug screenings and silk screen T-shirt artists), as well as just about anyone else in the provice running a fairly regular pulse.
When i walked into the OMDC office, i really hoped to see enormous towers of folders, boxes and bind-o-files looming in impossibly-piled stacks, their twisted silhouettes blotting out the sun, their stratospheric summits encircled by seagulls. Alas, no. Instead, i walked into a fairly calm and organized office.
Then i was greeted by Application Checker Lady, who thrust out her oak staff and blocked my path. She deigned to ask me a series of two questions before our application would pass muster. Answer them correctly, and she would spirit the app away to her treasure hold. Get the questions wrong, and she would … i dunno. Eat my face or somesuch.
Her questions were these:
ONE! Does your submission contain four separate copies?
“Y-yes!” i stammered.
TWO! Are the copies collated??
This last gave me pause. Were the copies “collated”? i knew what the word meant, but hadn’t i just answered that yes, there were four separate copies? Did she assume that i had shuffled all of the pages together and left it for the Corporation to sort out?
Or was this some kind of trick question, upon which the fate of our application hinged?
Like a fool, i grunted “W-what do you mean ‘collated’??”
Application Checker Lady was not impressed. “Separated and bound together in their proper order”, she said firmly.
“Uh … yes! Yes they are!” i said.
Application Checker Lady nodded curtly and turned on her heel. i was safe.
On my way back to the office, i tried to brainstorm other question combinations that would have thrown me off in a similar manner:
ONE! Do you live in a house?
TWO! Do you live in a home??
i dunno. At any rate, i’m disappointed that i didn’t get a chance to glimpse the mysterious Chamber of Wonders where all of the funding applications were being stored. i’m picturing the piles of gold you see shored up around sleeping dragons in airbrushed high fantasy artwork, but probably only because the app we submitted was for a high fantasy-themed game.
High fantasy with, naturally, a twist.
Aside from the volume of submissions, what i was really curious to see were the myriad ways in which people bound their applications. It was a bit of a trick to find just the right combination of plastic presentation folders and clips at Stipples; i wanted to see what everyone else had come up with. The next time i need a file folder, though, i’m going to hit up the OMDC – i can’t imagine how many folders and folios they’ve got cluttering up the place … some probably inlaid with find goldleaf and scented with lilac.
i won’t say what we actually presented until i find out our application status in about three months. This was our first funding application, and we’re a young company, so i realize we’re a long shot. Still, it’s nice to entertain thoughts of going into full production on a high-quality game that’s entirely our own.
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