Stanza 1 of 'The 1:00 a.m. Project,' written, produced & recorded by Rahim Ladha. Copyright (C) 2018 by Rahim Ladha. All Rights Reserved.

Time to write: 15 Minutes. 
Total Time to create from first word to end of recording - 24 minutes.

The 1:00 a.m. Project is a new podcast that focuses on storytelling, letters, poetry and other forms of written expression recorded for broadcast. The unique aspect of  The 1:00 a.m Project means that no aspect of the creative process will occur until that time - no ideas will be explored or written down or recorded until that time period begins. Once engaged in the process, I will not sleep until a narrative moves from the page to the microphone. There will be no editing and every recording will be in one take (so any mistakes will be included) It will be a true creative experiment. 

I didn't want to do a fundraiser unless there was some kind of altruistic element to it. I believe that kindness is something that should be remembered, and that if people are going to give their time or any of their resources to me, I feel compelled to do give back on a parallel level, if not more. 

That is why the first level of giving is free. Considering the nature of the gift, I felt it necessary to offer this option. For me, I find it difficult to ask someone to give monetarily if there is a resource provided that they will find helpful to their own soul (It's like saying to someone that you won't help them even if you wish to and have the resources to do so) If it is a challenging time for someone financially, but they need a voice that can hopefully soothe and comfort, I would consider it a privilege, not a burden (You are encouraged to sign up at that level if you are unable to give at the present time) 

All funds donated will go to things that artists need to attend to - but in this case it's not just about paying the bills or improving the equipment or resources to record (all of those things are on the list) The goal is to eventually raise over $10,000.00 so that I can focus on being able to record the stories of those who are fighting a terminal illness, so that their families have a record of their life and their stories. In the long process of grieving, I've seen first-hand situations where families are so exhausted and worn down by what their loved one is going through (There's no time to think about documenting the many stories of the life of someone) I want to make sure that there is an individual present to speak with and record the many tales (some of them may even be tall ones, but we can forgive the dying for their imagination - if anything, we should celebrate it) I want to spend a lot of my free time doing this, so this fundraiser will be of great help to providing the equipment, and the time. I like that it turns out that by giving to this project, not only will you receive my voice as much as you like, but that you in turn, will be giving a voice to those who won't have one for much longer, and letting that voice live on for others (There's a certain symmetry to this which I appreciate) And I appreciate your support. 

With that in mind, here are the various ways you can support The 1:00 a.m. Project. Scroll down to see each level of giving, and to make a contribution, scroll down to the bottom of the page and you'll find the donation form. Cheers, and Thanks. 

Free: $0.00 (Hello Friend)

Some of us simply do not have the resources to give, but even so, it doesn’t mean that you should be excluded from a gift if you require it. This level entitles you to as many audio letters of support that you need. These are private letters that are sent to you via email in the file format of your choice (MP3, MP4 etc) If you are feeling down or are in a dark place and need a voice to listen to to help you through, I will gladly be that voice and consider it a privilege (simply nudge me, let me know, and I'll record it for you that day) If we know each other, you know that I understand you, and feel a kinship or friendship or love for you, so I will gladly speak to you as long as you need until a time comes where you no longer require a voice in your ear to speak to you of how you will live, and endure, and survive whatever it is that you are going through. And if we do not know each other, feeling empathy for someone and having the ability to speak with them so that I can record something that will help is something that I would consider an honor. You sign up at the free level, feel no guilt – I simply could not in good conscience offer such a thing without having the option of it being free for those who can’t afford to give. It’s a hard world (and this can be a hard city to live in) so I don’t mind – I’d love to. To sign up for this level, simply email me at rahim@viciousminuteshour.com and I will be more than happy to help. 

$20.00 to $49.99 (A Little Bit of Kindness)

For donating at this level, you will not only receive all the audio letters of support that you request, I will also record for you three poems of your choice every three months. Now, I'm asking that we not include epic poems that are over a hundred pages long (Think of the vocal chords!) But, if it helps your soul that I do The Rime of the Ancient Mariner or Beowulf, I won't say no (just make sure you buy me a little ginger tea next time I see you, because I assure you, I will need it) That totals to 12 poems in a year, plus all the letters of support that you require, and the key is that they will not be public recordings, but for you exclusively. It can be any poem that you wish, and I promise to breathe as much life into those words you love, as I can. 

$50.00 to $99.99 (It's Good to Hear Your Voice Again)

For contributing at this level, you will not only receive all the letters of support that you request and the three poems of your choice every three months, you will also receive a recording of the short story of your choice every three months (and when I say short story, if that short story happens to be not so short, I won't mind whatsoever) I like reading, and I like the idea of having something long form that someone can tuck away whenever they need to listen to it. Again, none of these recordings will be made public, so they are all yours, my friend.

$100.00 to $249.99 (Pay It Forward)

For contributing at this level, not only will you receive all the letters of support, you will also receive three poems of your choice and a short story every month (That's 36 poems and 12 short stories of your choice recorded just for you and you alone) But this is also an opportunity for you to help an organization of your choice, as I will also volunteer at least forty hours of my time towards a cause that you support. We will discuss any cause that you feel passionate about and find an organization that is looking for volunteer help that you feel good about, and I will be more than happy to give my time in support. In a sense, by helping me, you'll not only be assisting in my continuing to do the work that I'm passionate about, but help others as well in the work that they do to make our community a better place (I kind of like the way that sounds and feels, eh?)

$250.00 to $499.99 (Feed the Soul, Feed the Belly)

Alright, the lists are about to get a little longer, so here we go. For contributing at this level, you will not only receive everything at the 'Pay It Forward,' level (all the letters of support, three poems of your choice and a short story every month (That's 36 poems and 12 short stories of your choice recorded just for you and you alone) and my commitment to donate at least 40 hours of my time to the organization of your choice, you will also receive a feast for two of homemade Indian food (and let's just say, I'm an expert chef thanks to the culinary skills of my mother and grandmother) This will include over twenty of my famous samosas (Now if you know anything about my samosa making, you know that I take the art form quite seriously) I don't just buy the wraps from your local store, but hand make them (a recipe that is decades-old, straight from the hands of my great-great-grandmother) One of the marvelous things about these wraps is that when you fry the samosas, they retain their crispy form, and yet the surface stays smooth in the process (and I don't just make tiny ones - you want one the size of your hand, who am I to deny you that pleasure?) Now, when I say twenty that is the minimum (chances are, you'll probably receive more than a few to freeze since they preserve quite well) And the topper? If you want me to use your kitchen to cook the feast and show you the secrets of not only the food, but the ancestral recipe for the wraps themselves, I will be more than happy to do so! (Oh, if you live out of town or out of country? Then I guess I'll just have to find a way to come to you, right? The world is a beautiful place and I don't mind a little travel, so I'll be seeing you in your kitchen, wherever you are!) 

$500.00 to $999.99 (Okay, My Heart)

Alright, this is a really long list, but we can narrow it down by saying that you receive everything that the 'Feed the Soul, Feed the Belly,' level has to offer (all the audio letters of support requested, three poems and a short story of your choice recorded for you every month, and my commitment to donate at least 40 hours of my time to the organization of your choice) You will also receive not just one feast for two of Indian cooking (which includes the option of my teaching you the famous secrets of my samosa making) but a feast for every season! (That's four different times I'll happily cook you a gorgeous repast, wherever you are on this planet) And, if for some reason you feel like inviting another soul or two to come on over for one of these feasts or lessons in cooking, the more, the merrier I say! (I do not mind filling the bellies of many with good food) And as the topper? I will record any novel of your choice for you to keep as your own private recording (so if there's a book you feel like my voice could do justice to, I will be more than honored to read and record it for you) So, we're feeding the soul, the belly and the mind!

$1000.00 or more (I'm Having an 'Uh, Wow...' Moment) 

Alright, if someone decides to donate at the highest level, you deserve a little something extra. You will receive all the benefits that have been listed (36 poems and 12 short stories of your choice recorded just for you and you alone) my commitment to donate at least 40 hours of my time to the organization of your choice, a seasonal feast for two (or more) of Indian food where I can prepare all the dishes for you and teach you the many secrets of the making of the perfect samosa (Yes, I called my samosas 'perfect,' but it is what it is) and yes, I will also record the novel of your choice (again, for the ears of you and anyone you wish to share it with) but this requires a little more commitment per usual, SO...

I will perform my new solo show in dance/theatre for you at either a venue within your city (Yes, whether you're in Toronto, Montreal or anywhere on this planet, I will rent out space and put on a show for you and your invited guests) or if you feel up for it, I will turn your living space into a performance venue and you can invite people over (This show will work in a smaller environment as it's more physical theatre within a contained space, but let's just say physically it can get explosive even within a smaller area) This won't just be a dress rehearsal, or a ten-minute monologue - this is over an hour long and I promise it's going to be a darn good show.