#27 – I just submitted my writing

Fellowships-Logo

Boom. That’s not just a check off the list, that’s a bomb that just exploded all over my brain. I just submitted a spec script I wrote the the NBC writer’s on the verge and the Warner Bros writing workshop fellowships. Yeah.

Now, the odds of anything happening are .001%, but that’s not why I’m jazzed. I’m jazzed because I wrote something and turned it in. I kept a commitment to myself and I feel proud. Damn proud. I’m not ashamed of my spec. Could it be better? Probably. Did I work my ass off to get it done and make it as polished as I could? You bet. Did I learn a lot in this process? For sure.

bubbly

So a bottle of presecco just went in the fridge because today marks the day I made the first real, concrete steps towards becoming a writer:

I submitted my spec to fellowships.

I registered a script with the WGA.

Next up: write an original pilot.

That’s the real doozy. The one that will really get you noticed (if people like it) and the one that excites me a lot more. It’s also what I’ll need for next year, when I’m able to submit to all the fellowships and not just the one’s accepting spec scripts.

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Get Out and DO!

So I came across this challenge: http://30-in-330.blogspot.com/  where the goal is to complete 30 goals within the remaining 330 days of the year. I found it via Habitica (love that goal getting app!) And my list, in no particular order:

  1. Run and PR in a half marathon
  2. Write a pilot script
  3. Pet a hippo
  4. Script Sup another feature
  5. Take pictures with film camera
  6. Set up my fish tank
  7. Host kombucha tasting party
  8. Lose 10 pounds
  9. Do month of Whole 30
  10. Get my bartending license
  11. Do a handstand
  12. Make homemade tiramasu
  13. Hike up a mountain
  14. Read 12 books
  15. Paint under bar area in kitchen with gold design
  16. Give up alcohol for one week
  17. Consolidate sewing pile to one bin
  18. Write a screenplay
  19. Repair picnic table
  20. Eat epic meal
  21. Finish darkroom painting
  22. Play a song on violin
  23. Organize GMedia equipment
  24. Make Julia Childs recipe
  25. Do a pull up
  26. Do a boudoir photo shoot
  27. Apply to writing fellowships
  28. 30 days of sex
  29. Buy queen size bed
  30. Go on a weekend getaway

More later as I actually go through each item and my plan to accomplish it!

2016- The Year of Learning

10000

This year my goal is to learn, to hone my skills, to really knuckle down, acquire discipline, and pursue learning. I’m continuing work on my screenwriting certificate and applying to fellowships and competitions to really try and hone my skills and develop my craft.

In addition, I discovered a fashion design certificate on groupon, and have purchased and begun a year long semi-intensive certificate in fashion design. I’ve always been interested in clothes, sewing, runway, and the creation of the things we wear everyday, so why not? It may take 10,000 to master a craft, but I enjoy a good diversion and feel it’s important to let the brain wander in different directions.

This year, instead of trying to read 25-50 books, I’m selecting 12 books from my shelves and working my way through one book per month. These are books on the craft of screenwriting (I have at least 10 half-started), books I’ve long wanted to read but never actually picked up (Quiet: Power of Introverts), books I’ve enjoyed but gotten distracted from (House of Leaves), or books that will highlight other pursuits (Born to Run). In short, I’m trying to consolidate and optimize my time.

Now, I think resolutions are bunk. They’re like a pie crust promise: easily made and easily broken. (We can all thank Mary Poppins for that bit of wisdom.) But goals– these are sustainable and empowering. One thing I discovered last year that has really allowed me to hone in on the things I want, and get them done in a timely manner, is Passion Planner.

passion

This gem has really helped me, especially because it includes a lot of visual components and places to make lists, keep things together, and progress points to really look at how you’re doing each month, and whether you’re really making progress. If you don’t already have a planner you love, I recommend giving Passion Planner a try.

What are some of your goals for the new year? Do you have a theme or focus that’s driving you?

To VO or not to VO

So this is the beginning of a short film I am working on. I’m currently torn between including the Voice Over in the script or cutting it now so they don’t have to cut it on the editing room floor.  If anyone is actually reading this blog and has a thought on whether to keep or toss, I’d appreciate the feedback.

Losing Costa Rica, with VO

INT. PLANE – DAY
Overhead bins pop open. Passengers grab luggage. Little kids squeeze to get off the plane first. The flight attendants wear a plastic smile.

ISAAC VO
People on planes are always happy to get off.

ISAAC turns to the flight attendant when she taps him on the shoulder. Isaac nods but leaves his headphones in and stands up.
The plane is empty.
Isaac grabs a beat up duffel from the overhead bin and makes his way down the aisle as the flight attendants collect trash.

ISAAC VO (CONT’D)
Get back to their lives.

INT. AIRPORT – MOMENTS LATER
Isaac passes the other passengers from the plane as they hug and kiss, happy to be reunited.

ISAAC VO
See their people.

Isaac passes by the baggage claim and stands just inside the airport doors, staring out as they open and close on other passengers moving out into their lives and the blinding light.

ISAAC VO (CONT’D)
I’d rather stay where I was.

CUT TO:

Image

Losing Costa Rica, without VO

INT. PLANE – DAY
Overhead bins pop open. Passengers grab luggage. Little kids squeeze to get off the plane first. The flight attendants wear a plastic smile.

ISAAC turns to the flight attendant when she taps him on the shoulder. Isaac nods but leaves his headphones in and stands up.

The plane is empty.

Isaac grabs a beat up duffel from the overhead bin and makes his way down the aisle as the flight attendants collect trash.

INT. AIRPORT – MOMENTS LATER
Isaac passes the other passengers from the plane as they hug and kiss, happy to be reunited.

Isaac passes by the baggage claim and stands just inside the airport doors, staring out as they open and close on other passengers moving out into their lives and the blinding light.

CUT TO:

The Planning Phase

For me, the hardest part of writing is what I call The Planning Phase*.

In an ideal world I would sit down and begin creating the backstory for my characters, plot the outline, revamp the outline, and flesh out my characters.  Instead I find myself procrastinating. If I have a deadline I usually wait until the last moment and dash something together and pretend I’ll revise the outline later.  I never revise the outline, I just start writing. I’ll half heartedly try to fix the outline as I go but it usually ends in a plot line full of holes and frustration where the end result is that I lament my inability (or refusal) to properly go through The Planning Phase.

Rather than actually planning out the script for a short film I am writing, I am on WordPress updating the blog, adding widgets, creating categories, and doing anything but actually planning the script.  I have a rough concept but seem content to float along with the idea rather than flesh it out.  While this has worked for other short films (10 pages fills up quickly) I’m going for a more emotive and less concrete plot with this one, and it would be better planned out than written on the fly.  Hopefully a subsequent blog post will have the outline or the characters for you**.

*Please note that it is in bold because when I see it in my mind or say it aloud it seems very large and impressive. And scary.

**Whoever you are, since I’m not sharing this blog with anyone I actually know. I just got a badge for 5+ followers, but for me this blog is about writing every day, whether anyone reads it or not. If you are reading, feel free to comment and say hi. It just seems weird to get a badge/trophy for having people follow a blog.  I didn’t realize this was a popularity contest or that I needed a badge to tell me x number of people are following.

“If you write…”

“If you write one page per day, by the end of a year you will have finished a screenplay or novel”

2014 approaches.

All New Year’s goals will be based around the theme of speed.

Fitness goal: Increase running speed by doing speed drills and adding mileage.

Home goal: Speed through weekend cleaning by doing small cleaning chores throughout the week.

Writing goal: 1 page per day. This is where you, wee blog, come in. I will be posting something every day, whether it be from my screenplay, a writing exercise, or just a silly poem I made up. Writing every day will inevitably speed up finishing my screenplay.

Romance goal: Speed up defensive to offensive chess until I checkmate Ryan.

Yoga goal: Do yoga more often and flow into forearm stand.

Organization goal: Speed up frequency of sewing and vanquish giant mending pile.

Creative goal:Speed through editing photo shoots by just picking a few photos to edit instead of the entire shoot.