The CCE runs events that are geared to match mentees with mentors. These events can be virtual or in-person and can often take the form of ‘micro meetings’ either one-on-one or in small groups. An opportunity for contact information to be exchanged is offered if permission is granted. Typically these events run 2-3 times per year. To learn about upcoming events, keep an eye on our social media channels.
The CCE’s in-person Editcon events (in major cities coinciding with EditCon) include dedicated socializing time after the panels. This is a great time to approach an editor whose work has been featured, or to introduce yourself to someone who was in the audience.
The virtual component of EditCon includes networking time on the Gather platform. When you log in, you create an avatar which you use to navigate within a virtual room. As you approach another participant or group, you can hear the conversation and take part. Despite the opinion that virtual networking is less effective than in-person networking, it does offer some advantages, including the ability to connect with editors from across the country, regardless of location. The etiquette is different from in-person group networking in that online networking allows you to move around the room more freely and sample conversations, and you can hone into the conversation that most interests you. It can also be easier to join and leave a group conversation.
Film festivals are a great way to connect with the work being done by Canadian editors. Often, editors are in the audience at premieres. Even if they are not, reaching out to an editor after attending their film premiere shows that you took time to appreciate their work. It’s not easy for smaller independent films to find an audience. If you make the effort to come in person, it will be appreciated. Film festivals often host parties, which can be a good place to network as well. Informally, you can often find the filmmakers lingering in the lobby after a screening. The CCE sometimes offers free or discounted tickets to film festivals or local events in different cities. Subscribe to the CCE newsletter to stay up-to-date.
The Canadian Academy, DGC, and CCE organize annual awards ceremonies which require juries. Participating in a jury is a great way to connect with other editors. Not only are you often exposed to many editors’ work, through viewing entries, but you also have the advantage of meeting your co-jurors. You may feel you are aligned creatively with another juror, and this would be a great starting place to build a relationship.
While not the most effective way to network, there is a benefit to sending personalized (not bulk) emails to specific editors whose work interests you. Make sure to watch their work in advance and offer a comment or two about it. It will show that you are serious and have done research before reaching out and asking to have a meeting. It doesn’t hurt to be complimentary as well. Editors often feel that they are not spotlighted, so pointing out a particular scene that you thought was well-edited can go a long way to getting a reply.
Do not be discouraged if you hear that an editor is busy and would like you to ask them again in a month or two. The busiest portion of a film or TV series is not the best time to be speaking with a potential mentor. They’ll likely be preoccupied with work. It’s better to wait until they have the mental energy and space – the conversation will be much better.
In order to locate editor’s email addresses, check the following resources:
One of the best ways to find an editing mentor is to work with an editor on a project. Many editors were mentored as assistants themselves, and value the tradition of passing down knowledge and advice. Of course, you may be looking for a mentor to help you get a foothold into the industry, so this option works better for those with previous work experience. If you are new to the industry, consider an assisting opportunity on a lower budget project. You may have to work for lower pay, or treat the opportunity like an internship. Your assistance on small projects will be greatly appreciated. If volunteering for experience, ensure that the arrangement is reciprocal. The production should provide benefit through knowledge acquisition and hands on experience, while they benefit from your efforts. There should always be an agreed amount of time of the commitment as well, and this should not be left open ended.
Use your existing network: You may be surprised that someone you already know or whom you have worked with before is one link away from an editor you’d like to meet. Ask your colleagues, classmates, or instructors if they might be able to help connect you.
Once you’ve paired up with a mentor, The CCE has created a handy self-guided mentorship kit!
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