"We're hoping to succeed; we're okay with failure. We just don't want to land in between."
Founder of momofuku restaurant empire
If you've read my last two posts you're probably thinking - yeah, where's this screenplay, huh? Your last post was about Tony Bourdain and friggin cleavers...you're full of $#!t Trevor!!... Well, this may be true but I read somewhere (I know, I know..don't believe everything you read...) that after completing something that you've spent a decent amount of time on, you should take some space and lock it away in that bottom drawer for some weeks before you attempt editing/revising/reviewing it. Makes sense to me. You spend countless hours each day looking/making/creating this screenplay/novel/article/thesis for weeks on end, it becomes an extension of you; you think about it day and night. I don't think you could work on that thing honestly again without some breathing space.
At first I found myself trying to read every book on 'How to write a Screenplay' I could get my hands on but in the end I realized; if you want to attempt to get good at something, just do it. A good analogy I could draw would be the ability to do a chin-up: you can do lat pulldowns and rows as much as you like but when it comes to the crunch, just do chin-ups! Sure, you may need to do negative reps and other variations to get your chin up over the bar the first time, but just do it! So I just started writing. Routine is hard to establish at first. They say you should try to write a set goal, say 500 words or 1000 words per day; set periods of the day that you should write whether it be AM or PM. I found it easier to write in the morning, just being that my work schedule tends to be the PM hours; it was (1) when I had the time and (2) I just found it worked better for me than the wee hours of the morning.
Here are some notes taken from my notepad early November 2011:
4 Oct – 4 Nov 2011 – completed 80 pages of ____________
Finding writing outside of the house is much less distracting; coffee shops are good, just put in the headphones and write away. I don’t use wifi when I’m out and writing so I don’t get distracted, at home it’s too easy to do non-productive things like check email, Facebook and Gmail. If there’s anything I need to research for my script I write it down and look it up later. Good albums I’m listening to right now are; Common – Be; and various Erykah Badu – the beats are conducive to quiet writing and thinking. I’m certainly not prolific by any means but the slow grind is the way to get things done; I try to write a little every day. If I miss a day I try not to beat myself up too much and just start again the next day. Well, writing this is fun but I should get back to my real writing….
So I'm not super strict with my schedule; I try to write when I can and at a few pages at a time. My rewrite is looking daunting, my story has more holes than a block of swiss. But I guess that's part of the fun. Following Seth Godin's blog I came across David Chang who is the owner and founder of the momofuku Korean restaurant chain which he started in New York and has now expanded across to Sydney. His ideas on business I find interesting; and I like the name momofuku which also happens to be the name of the guy that invented instant noodles, Momofuku Ando. One day maybe I can actually eat at a momofuku somewhere. I think the quote at the beginning of today's blog sums it up nicely - give it a shot. Why not? I also like this gem which I came across initially on Ross Enamait's site, but from the mouth of motivational guru Zig Ziglar
"You don't have to be great to start, but you have to start to be great"
Go on, get started!