Thank you very much for all of the replies to the last post. Although everyone offered slightly different opinions, the general consensus did seem to be that I should apply this year, and a lot of people though that doing the 1 week course would be a good idea. My issue with the 1 week course isn't much to do with the course, but mostly to do with the accommodation. I contacted the college a few weeks ago to ask what they recommended for accommodation, and basically it isn't something I can see suiting me at all well, even for 1 week. It is a big house, and the landlady provides all the food (problem number 1 - I am incredibly fussy, and then obviously also eating disordered, and just think that would be a massive problem), and also the bedrooms are all shared with up to 5 people a room. I value my privacy far, far too much to consider sharing a room, even for a week. I would just find it completely stifling, and I just couldn't cope with it. If I had a friend in London I could stay with then I would definitely give it a go, but there isn't anyone, and so accommodation is definitely a problem. The alternative to the accommodation suggested by the college would be to find somewhere else, maybe at one of the YMCAs or a cheap B&B or something, but I am concerned that if I did that I would be very isolated in the evenings, as I would be on my own, which isn't great when I am feeling bad, and there is also still an issue with food. So accommodation would be a big concern.
Applying for 2011 entry for full time courses is difficult for several reasons. Firstly, if I had an audition come up and I was feeling how I have been lately I just couldn't go - I couldn't face it. You also have to put in an awful lot of work for audition preparation - finding suitable monologues is a case of spending hours and hours and hours in somewhere reading through hundreds of plays, and I just don't have the concentration to do that at the moment. Then you have to put in a lot of hours of work over at least a few months learning and preparing them, which I also don't have the concentration or motivation for. Technically this should all be done before you even send off audition forms, as you sometimes only get a couple of weeks notice of an audition date (although usually it is longer), and I would want to send my forms off by the end of November at the absolute latest - my original plan was October. So I am starting to push it a bit time wise, but I just haven't been in a good enough place to be preparing, and I still don't really feel up to it if I am honest. I am also worried because if I am doing auditions I need to be well enough to focus on it so completely - there is no point going to an audition if I am feeling shit, as it will not go well - if you are't completely connecting to your monologue then they can see and there is no point in going. I have had that before - I auditioned at a very good school and was feeling pretty crap, wasn't expecting to get through to the recall stage and yet somehow did, and I completely fell to pieces. I ended up having a proper panic attack (not in the actual audition, but when I was waiting to go back in) and then when I went in I was just absolutely shit, and they could so obviously tell something was wrong - after I had finished and gone out one of them came out and spoke to me and asked me to go back in, presumably to give me another chance as I had been so shit, but I was no better. And it just really destroyed my confidence - I usually really enjoy auditions, and being so terrible at that one worried me. But you can't bullshit your way through - if you aren't on top form there is always someone else who will be, and realistically I am not likely to be on top form much of the time when I am feeling as bad as I do the majority of the time. Plus it is expensive. Audition fees are a lot of money, and if I was applying then I would want to apply for a lot of colleges, as I don't see the point in just applying for a couple, so realistically it would be about £400 in audition fees, and then travelling fees, and sometimes I would need overnight accommodation too. It really does end up an expensive process, and so for obvious reasons I don't want to apply if I don't feel like I am going to have a good chance or be able to do my best.
I am aware I am sounding really negative, which I suppose should tell me something. I think the trouble is, if I am honest I don't feel like I am nearly ready or well enough to be auditioning for full time courses, but I feel like I need to, because I don't know how I will ever be able to change things to make myself well enough to do this, and every year that goes by I feel like I have wasted another year. But I feel like if I tried to apply at the moment I just wouldn't want to go to any of the auditions, I wouldn't feel up to it, and I would end up making myself stressed and more ill over it all. I suppose I have essentially answered my own question, but I don't want that to be the answer. I want to feel able to do it. I want to want to do it. I want to really care about something - to love doing it, and for it to excite me and make me happy. To look forward to rehearsals and auditions, rather than dreading them as I do now. I want to have my passion back. And I don't know how to get it. I just feel numb and dead. I feel like I am just a shell, and everything that made up me, and who I was, has disappeared, and I don't know if it will ever come back.