Musings of a pig lady: Linda McDonald-Brown

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When I was a little girl, I would constantly be asked, as children usually are by grown-ups: “And what do you want to be when you’re older?”

“An actress,” I would reply.

Yes, it’s true. I used to dream of becoming a Hollywood actress. Well, as you can see my life didn’t quite work out as I had hoped, so it was quite exciting for me to have the opportunity recently to attend a “Hit the Ground Running” workshop, a one-day intensive course aimed at those who want to enter the film industry, held at Gracefields Art Centre in Dumfries.

Organised by Linda Fraser, who has worked in television since 1997 and is passionate about what she does, the course focused on the role of the runner (no, I didn’t have a clue what a runner did before the course either), giving potential runners an understanding of what is required and the various tasks they may be asked to perform.

It was well attended, mostly by graduates though there was a more mature person attending as well. I was surprised but Linda told me that the film industry is quite open to accepting applicants other than graduates. “They won’t necessarily turn you down just because you’re not a graduate or you are older than the usual applicants,” she said.

These courses are free, funded from a variety of sources such as the BECTU and the Scottish Union Learning Fund, Scottish Screen, Glasgow Film Office, Edinburgh Film Focus, Screen HI, Highlands and Islands Screen Commission, Creative Skillset and the Screen Academy at Napier University and Edinburgh College of Art. It’s this funding that allows Linda and her team to bring the courses into provincial areas, enabling everyone interested in breaking into the film industry a chance, no matter what their background or their experience.

As for me, it may be too late to become an actress but this course has got me thinking! Contact Linda at if you have an interest in becoming a runner.