I had my first conversation with one of the screenwriting coaches I wanted to meet with and I found myself saying things that I didn’t expect.
For as positive as I want to be, being honest with myself about my goals, my hopes, and my fears, left me feeling a bit unnerved. Until recently, I had been afraid to chase my dream, but now I’ve done a 180 and don’t want to waste any more time. After saying this phrase a few times, Lucy, my potential new coach, said I hadn’t been wasting time but living my life.
If only she knew.
If the state of the world is any indication at how precarious it all is, then we need to take advantage of the moment.
We have to silence the inner demons, squash the dark side of ourselves, and believe we are capable of achieving whatever goals we have set. I always think, there are so many people doing what I want, so why can’t I? They stepped up. They believed in themselves. It’s time I did the same.
Finish the project. Get it out into the world. See what happens. And no matter the result…try again. Repeat until desired result achieved. 😉
How do you build self-confidence? Share your tips or advice below and let’s encourage one another!
We all remember during lockdown and the US presidential election, how so many of us struggled, while others flourished. There was an outpouring of creativity and community and I was in awe of what could be done when given the chance. I was not one of those people. I was in the first group.
I was not creative. I barely wrote. I couldn’t watch anything “heavy”; there were a lot of bad movies viewed. I developed anxiety.
It was a strange time.
It was the year that will go down in infamy – 2020.
We couldn’t wait for it to go away. So many of us looked to 2021 as a magic reset button.
It was not.
I was determined to make 2022 different. With the new year and new goals, I decided to stop wasting my TV viewing time on things I’ve watched a dozen times over. I would watch those “must see” movies and shows in my genre. I would read the books I “should have” read. I would read more screenplays because you know, that’s what I want to do in life.
I had a new perspective and I wanted to make an impact.
Then, when things felt like they might be getting better, ever so slightly, a megalomaniac chose that moment to make things that much worse.
It’s easy to use TV, movies, and video games as a means of escapism in a world turned on its side. It’s easy to rationalize it all as research when you’re a creative.
It’s a little column A, a little column B.
So, despite the current situation, I thought I’d share the 3 shows I’ve watched so far that I’ve enjoyed if you’re in need of a little escape (or research 😉 ). They’re all available on Netflix.
Arcane – By far the best show I’ve watched in some time. The animation is beautiful, the characters are all intriguing, and the world is unique. Considering it took 6 years to make the first season, I’m guessing it will be a long wait for season 2, but it will be worth it.
The Witcher Season 2 – I am a big fan of the third installment in the video game series – I even wrote a review about it – so I was always going to watch the show. While season 1 was a little convoluted and hard to follow if you weren’t familiar with the material, they did a great job with the second season.
Shadow and Bone – This series kept being suggested to me, and I wasn’t sure what to expect. I had not read the books, or even heard of them beforehand. I have since read the first novel. Don’t waste your time, just watch the show. It’s a magical land, actually, they don’t call it magic, and there are some fun characters, and it was better than I thought it would be.
I’ve started a few other shows and if anything else resonates, I’ll be sure to pass it along.
Do you have any shows or movies to recommend? What shouldn’t be missed?
In the free photo gallery available via WordPress, the search bar already comes with a suggested term and subsequent photos to give you an idea of the variety of images available. “Patterns” was the suggested term – that’s a bit on the nose, Universe, but I hear you – and this breathtaking image was among them.
If you need a break from your own writing and are looking for a bit of inspiration for a free write or some flash fiction, I hope this imagery brings about a spark of creativity.
I like to share a bit of inspiration at the beginning of the week, but for me and some of you who work a non-traditional work week, it’s like my Thursday.
I suppose the inspiration helps to get me to my weekend, when I can finally decompress and be productive in the ways that truly matter.
This week’s quote is to help us writers with our confidence. Something I know I struggle with. We’re a strange breed. We spend hours beyond counting in solitude, consumed by self-doubt and without any encouragement for years, and then, at some point, are forced to pull a 180 in order to face the world in an effort to become “professional”.
And people wonder why so many writers are unstable. 😉
We already have to be so many different people for our art – the writer, the editor, the audience, the hero, the villain – and then we have to alter ourselves to make it happen by being confident.
It’s easy to be confident while I write. I take on the persona of my characters, the ones who are willing to do anything to achieve their goals, who go on big adventures, and do great things. I put myself in their shoes and walk into rooms as if I own them.
In the real world, not so much.
It’s hard to be confident when we’re unsure of the outcome. When we’re new. When we’re in a room with people higher on the ladder with much more sway. Or all the sway. But this is not so much about the physicality of the situation, but instead about shifting our mentality.
We have to be secure in what we’ve done and what we’re ready to put out in the world.
Easier said than done, I know.
Like any new skill, it takes time and practice aka patience.
One way I think of obtaining said “confidence” is knowing what we want for ourselves – our measure of success.
What needs to happen for you to count yourself as successful? There will always be disappointments, but what will give you satisfaction?
I’ve long dreamt of winning an Oscar. I mean, c’mon. How cool would that be? But does the possibility of never winning one diminish my drive? Nope. It’s a big reach, and a political gambit, apparently, so I don’t place my measure of success on having that gold statuette on my mantle. But I do have my dress picked out, just in case. Think of this, Stephen Hawking never won a Nobel, so…you know, perspective.
I also believe that as we continue to meet and exceed our goals, that helps to build our confidence as well. So as we look forward to a new year and the associated objectives we wish to accomplish, tackle those small tasks that lead to bigger ones (and then tackle those too) and reward yourself each step of the way.
Be brave, my fellow writers. Be confident. And Happy Writing!
How is a newbie ever to make heads or tails of it all? Sometimes, it’s just too much.
This year I decided to clean up the folder with said saves because some of them are years old now, and while probably still worth reading, at this point, I’ve most likely come across the information elsewhere. Plus, as the article above makes clear, most of what’s out there is bullsh*t.
Screenwriting is an elusive career path. There is no direct, one-way only entry. It’s not like any other creative pursuit, let alone traditional ones. A novelist can write a book and seek out a publisher or self-publish. A painter can create a work of art and put it on display. If a screenwriter wants their work “out there” we’re often told to make a short.
I don’t want to be director. I don’t think. So that means I have to find a director…?
I barely have any writer friends as it is.
So those already in the know share what they’ve learned, what trends they’re “seeing”, and basically utilize their position to further their own careers via writing guest posts, pushing their screenwriting books, classes, or services, and offering “advice” on how to break in.
Yes, I’m using quotes to reiterate how inconsequential so much of that advice truly is, especially when you keep scrolling and read advice to the contrary, as the above article highlights.
Like any advice, good or bad, take it with a grain of salt.
I’m also learning that the more time I spend reading the “should and should-not” posts is just more time taken away from doing what I actually should be doing – writing.
If you’re interested in researching a particular subject, like screenwriting contests, of course, seek those out, from reputable sources, but maybe be more discerning with the content you subscribe to and how much time you spend on subjects that don’t currently relate to your situation.
How’s that for advice? Some I need to follow myself. I’m off to delete!
So now that you’ve read my post about articles and their potential uselessness, thank you very much, by the way, close this window and go write! 😉
Wednesday is Writing Prompt Day! So how is it I haven’t shared one since mid-November…? I know I was personally struggling to find time to dedicate to them, I’m still on my (original stories) writing kick, but considering they’re something I enjoy seeking out, all I can say is, “Eek!”
So let’s start this new year off with a bit of light hearted, or maybe not, writing fun.
As is the norm, I chose the first image that struck me, and I am surprised to say, I had a curious stirring of the imagination towards a story idea. I wrote down the line that came to me, and I’ll revisit it to see what sort of foundation it may form. I don’t know just yet if it’s going to be part of the WP challenge or if it’s a full blown screenplay. Either way, color me intrigued.
What about you? Are you feeling the tickle of inspiration?
I hope you’ll join me in this week’s challenge. If you find yourself inspired by any of the writing prompts I’ve posted, please don’t forget to share! I can’t wait to see what you all create!
As another year draws to its inevitable end, it’s hard not to reflect on the goals I set for myself and how I fared. Where did I succeed? Where do I need improvement?
As many of you are now aware, The Sis and I had a rough start to the year. That chipped away at a big chunk of productivity overall. Months were lost, and when I realized how soon 2021 would be gone, I was stricken with a sense of scrambling to make my year end goals. This led to exhaustion, and a bit of depression.
The last month or so I have felt little motivation, in any regard. It probably doesn’t help that I haven’t seen the sun in weeks either. How can the sun just not exist here?! It’s too cold. It’s too gray. *Side note, I had a Facebook reminder today that 8 years ago I was basking in 81 degree weather and was rubbing it in the faces of my East coast friends. Today I’m avoiding the fact that I’m now in 14 degrees and my car is buried in the snow.
The day job is mind numbing, and I’ve already said enough on the topic. It won’t change until I make a change, so that one is on me, but compounded with the above, I’m feeling the effects.
I think I also may have been too over-reaching this year in my goal setting. With the big move, a sick pup, and the two above-mentioned downsides, it has been harder than usual to stay the course, so I should have reconfigured the list sooner so as to not feel this disappointed by not being able to mark my goals as “complete”.
So this is where we come to the moral of the story. When determining your goals for the new year, be reasonable, and a little lofty in your aspirations. The “resolutions” are meant to be inspiration, something to strive for. While some of them may feel out of reach or grandiose, the point of making a goal a goal is so we have a measuring stick for our accomplishments. They shouldn’t make us feel bad about ourselves. They should offer us something to work towards; to help us gauge each step in our progress, and that falling short doesn’t mean we’ve failed because at least we were willing to try (and are possibly continuing to do so).
This is something I’ve had to remind myself of, and why this week’s quote struck me.
I allowed my inability to accomplish all my goals affect my feelings of self worth. I have let a number of years slide without a second thought as to my aspirations, but this year was different. When I had that lightbulb moment about my writing, that newfound desire to follow my dreams resonated so deeply within me, that I think the thought that I couldn’t accomplish a few simple tasks hit me harder. “If I couldn’t finish a movie watching goal, what makes me think I can be a professional writer?” Those two things do not have any bearing on the other, and it was an easy spiral to find myself in as a way of discouraging my progress.
So be kind to yourselves. Set goals, but understand they may take longer than the time we set for ourselves. Celebrate the small steps or accomplishments toward a greater goal. Find people who will continue to encourage you. If you can make changes to the things that are inhibiting you, be brave. And Good Luck!
Here’s to a new year of new goals and to crushing them!
I’ve been considering, for a while now, the idea of renewing my scuba certification in an effort to aid in the oceanic cleanup projects happening. I love the water, always have, and realized that this is something more I can do for the environment. So when I saw this image of an underwater forest, it reaffirmed that idea (because how awesome would swimming through a forest be?), and became the inspiration for this week’s Writing Prompt.
Does this give you fantasy or apocalypse vibes? Maybe a little bit of both? What story idea does it inspire in you?