You're done bingeing Tiger King -- so what is there left to do when you're confined to your home? Now's a good time to consider professional development opportunities, like taking an online course to build your skills for when the job market picks back up.
If you're hoping to make a career transition, online courses can help boost your resume. Coursera and edX offer a ton of free college courses, where you can learn about topics like marketing, negotiation, computer science, and other fields. LinkedIn Learning also offers a range of courses and suggests classes that may interest you based on your profile. The platform even has software training courses, so you can learn Adobe Creative Suite and other industry-prominent programs. The Los Angeles Public Library also has resources for free courses, including language courses -- we're often told by clients that they wish they could include foreign language proficiency on their resumes -- now's a great time to learn those skills. And if you're willing to spend a bit of money, you could try platforms like Udemy, where you can learn about pretty much everything under the sun. Even if you're not trying to make a career move, it doesn't hurt to try something new!
For entertainment-focused learning opportunities, professional organizations and guilds can be great resources. If you're a member of any of these organizations, keep an eye on their newsletters and social feeds -- many are hosting webinars and online workshops for entertainment professionals. You could also consider joining Stage 32, an entertainment industry social networking platform that offers webinars on a range of topics, like screenwriting, independent filmmaking, and production. MasterClass is another online resource that offers a few entertainment-related classes.
In addition to taking courses, you can focus on building skills and knowledge on your own. Read the trades and watch buzzy films or TV shows to stay on top of industry happenings and trends. Or hone in on your story evaluation skills by reading scripts, whether it's catching up on the end-of-year lists like The Black List or The Blood List or tracking pilot season. If you're a writer, you should be working on your spec -- for some inspiration, check out AnyPossibility, a platform with amazing resources designed to help keep writers on track with their scripts.
Any of these options are good ways to pass the time during these difficult weeks. But if you're not feeling so ambitious, there's also nothing wrong with kicking back with a good book, movie, or TV show, or podcast. A lot of people are feeling overextended these days, so if actively learning something new is too much right now, give yourself a break. As we've said many times, consuming content is a big part of being in this industry because it allows you to develop your taste. Lean into your interests and take a mental note of what brings you satisfaction on screen -- when you're ready to look for a new job, you'll want to tap back into that and target companies that create content you enjoy. And for now, you'll have some quality screen time.
Angela Silak & Cindy Kaplan