Hey guys, I (nearly) finished my new website! The meat of the thing is all there, but there are some remaining blog entries I need to write so my home page will propagate all the image blocks. I was really surprised to find that I have an actual portfolio now that reflects work with which I am happy and not embarrassed to show to new clients. Some of my better pieces are mysteriously missing (probably on some external drive still buried in a moving box), but I’m pretty OK with what’s available. My work isn’t going to set any trends or win any awards, but it’s professional, at least. A day after I finished it, I even got picked up for part-time overflow work by a local printer.
You know, because I need some extra work to fill all that spare time I have.
It’s really awesome to feel like a capable professional now, instead of the self-educated hack I once was. Lily Tomlin sums it up: Excuse me, could you tell me how to get to Carnegie Hall? Practice!
The Pilot: Is still a go. Bossman’s in Brooklyn now doing ride-alongs with the scouting crew, rewriting scenes, and dealing with the crazy politics of working on a network show. I’ll probably still end up going to NY for filming in early April. We’ve been given the opportunity to “fix” the script after the procedural writer came in and made it…er…not what we envisioned, which probably accounts for Bossman’s sudden good mood. Also, on Sunday his new baby boy joined us in the land of light. Huzzah for babies! I have purchased for the new little mister this gem of a sucky:
I can’t wait to see it in action. After all, what’s the point of having kids if you can’t laugh at their expense?
The New Place: is amazing. I’ve been organizing like a madwoman in what spare moments I can grab here and there. It’s starting to look like a home. It definitely feels like home. Cousin Smashley came to visit a few days ago, and Pants stayed over post-tiki-bar excursion last week, so we’re almost broken in. Garden and house plants have taken root, cakes and muffins have been baked. It’s starting to smell of us and our foods. We require a game night, dinner party, and a holiday celebration, then our home-spell will be complete.
In keeping with my List of 100 Things to Do This Year, I am now working on Script One of the three I intend to write this year. Tytron and I outlined the story from beginning to end last night, and today I will take the shorthand and write a real outline. From there, I’ll break it out into scene headers and dialog, then hopefully end up with a full script that is as amazing as I hope and dream.
Bossman once told me every writer has at least one story. It’s not the “I could write an action movie with some spy shit because it would probably sell” story; no – this is the one that begs and pleads and screams and tantrums and keeps you awake at night until you just write the damned thing. You must draw it from yourself like some essential, symbiotic poison contaminating your blood, even while it keeps you vital and hungry. It doesn’t matter if it’s not immediately clear how to market your story, whether or not it has money-making potential, or what-have-you, it’s your heart’s tale. And it must be written.
His advice: Once you figure out what that story is, you have to write it, rewrite it, rewrite it again, pull it apart, make brutal cuts, make it tight, trim the fat, make it tighter…then rewrite it again until it’s absolutely perfect. When you have the perfect version of your story, don’t you let anyone convince you to change what you consider to be essential components. Stay the course. Find someone who loves it as much as you, someone who may ask for small adjustments that will help with production, but don’t allow others to compromise or co-opt your vision. Because this is your story. And if you have one good story to tell, you have to tell it your way.
My story is a three-parter. I have toyed with the underlying concepts and characters for several years now, and as we filled out the first of the three parts last night, it became blindingly clear that this is really, truly the story I was made to tell. So, that’s my goal. If I can make my story into three cohesive scripts that make me proud, I don’t even care if I ever sell them. It’s been an interesting process taking what is essentially my half-written novel (from NaNoWriMo back in 2008), and adapting it into a screenplay. It’s coming together much more easily. I don’t tangent and get lost in the plot twists anymore. I see it so clearly. There’s absolutely no chaff. No slow burn. It’s BAM! — right there, moving along at a healthy clip from the get-go, some built-in jokes, and a pace I can easily maintain and tweak. Seeing it in its entirety sends electric thrills down my spine, as I watch the birth of a tiny cosmos made by my own hand.
And, even when I start to hate it after the tenth rewrite, it will be deliciously mine to hate, and that’s something.
I have kept my resolution of blogging weekly, though it’s mostly private entries that are not open to public viewing. I, apparently, have much to say on subjects that do not outwardly reflect the overwhelming amount of gratitude with which I am infused. As such, I vent onto my little glowing screen, then choose not to share. I have come to feel that if it doesn’t amuse or instruct it is not something I am interested in sharing at this point in time. I’ve had my fair share of grumbly rambles, and I simply don’t want to indulge anymore.
Now, if you’ve read this far, you are surely unemployed, underemployed, or simply seeking respite from your workday. I am not that interesting. Get off your computer, you, and go interact with some human who craves your attention. Be love, be kind, eat cupcakes, drink whiskey. Go forth into this world and light up the lanterns and candles and twinkly strings of incandescent bulbs that burn for all who care to be drawn into your light. We are all potentially extraordinary. Go make it so.