Let’s start with the obvious. I’ve been away from this channel for quite some time, and yeah, I miss it. I thought that in order to be more productive in my writing career, I had to focus on the projects that could lead to paid gigs, like my screenplays. But then, I’d get home after a long day, and I’d do nothing, or waste time. The point is, I wasn’t writing.
When I wrote new blog posts in the past, it utilized a different part of the brain, but at the end of the day, I used my brain. The constant stream of output allowed the narrative functions to relax, and the analytical processes to ignite. I loved the feeling of being productive in multiple facets. If I was able to paint something (that I didn’t hate), I’d do that more, but even if I painted something God awful now, it would serve the same purpose as a blog. It’s an expression of the mind through other channels and that’s freeing. I miss that.
Today, I was gobsmacked with a wave of nostalgia. I went to a new restaurant for my office’s lunch run, Belcampo, on 3rd Street in LA, and it was there (in the Verve coffee shop next door) where I spent many a day typing away at my creative endeavors. Whether the focus was My Cancer Story, a screenplay, or the then-numerous blog posts (yeah, sorry about that), I spent my free time (of which I had ample supply then) ticking away at my form of expression. On November 8th, it will have been three years since I moved into my first apartment here, the temporary room rental on Blackburn Ave.
While I never heard Donald Wade utter these words, I live by them each and every day. Sometimes to a fault; I’m hard on myself because I know those hours I sneak away watching mindless YouTube Videos don’t add to my career, but nevertheless, I’m maximizing my efficiency daily.
When I moved out to Los Angeles two years ago, it was to begin a chain reaction of goals in which to accomplish. I spent over a decade of my life post-cancer doing little regarding creativity or towards a profession. Sure, I went to school for four of those years and made some films, but the momentum from the education stalled, and I was left to wander aimlessly.
Even before my first days at NESCom, I continuously bugged the staff to offer a screenwriter’s course, and just when I thought that semester would never come, my advisor, John, told me that they would first offer the course in the fall of THIS YEAR, 2012! I jumped onto it as soon as possible considering there were only twelve spots on the roster. Come to think of it, I may have been the very first person to register.
I worked with someone recently on a short film, and somehow, her and her fiancé lived in the same small city that I called home for over ten years: Bangor, Maine. He worked at the very same hospital that I did for the better part of a decade, and I remember him. It’s insane to think about: he was working at the hospital during some of the most stressful moments in my life. I’d see him almost every day, and have probably nodded or said hi to him a dozen times. But there were times when I wasn’t the happy-go-lucky person I had been before and since. Those were some of my darkest days, and it is through those they say that you learn from the most.
It’s funny to watch yourself during a moment of absolute freedom; when I have a full day to write and be productive, and every time I research a word for a better synonym, or open my browser, instinctively (and immediately), I fall into a clickhole. I open Facebook, or YouTube, ever distancing myself from my main objective. It’s even worse when I actually need to examine one simple post from our content channels on Facebook, and rather than accomplishing that objective, I like post after post, scrolling down the infinite wall of personal expression.
As I sat in my room, packing away my belongings for my trip across the country, I came across a few things that made me pause.
First, was a yellow notepad that had an outline detailing all of the time travel elements for one of my scripts; it was convoluted and thus the outline was necessary (that alone screams “rewrite”).Read More »