Bryan Cranston on Auditioning

 

The video below struck a cord with me because it answers something that been bothering me over the last few months. I’ve done more auditions since January than I have the entire rest of my life put together (not that it’s a lot by acting standards). This has brought to the forefront an issue I’d noticed before but when auditions are months apart it’s easier to shove the thought away and forget about it than when you have one a week for several weeks in a row.

My issue is exactly what Brian deals with- the attitude to have about an audition. I have two defaults that I swing between, forcing myself into one or the other.

  1. I don’t care if I get in, this audition doesn’t matter. It’s just practice.
  2. I want this role/job/etc SO BAD and I have to convince them to give it to me.

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Starting Again

 

I think I’m in the mood to blog again.

I think I’ve thought about it too much. I tried so hard to follow all the advice about posting regularly and finding a theme and getting a niche- blah blah blah- in doing it right, that I took every bit of me out. OK, not every bit. Still, while the words may have sometimes been mine the style and the method were not.

That was fine when I was writing up a storm and trying to get my 1,000,000 words. I had things to post all the time in a race to get my word count up. When that ended I was left with no idea what to put on here.

Actually, when that ended I basically quit writing for awhile. I kept up my Morning Pages, my journal stayed close at hand, I did some editing, but I didn’t write the way I had been. Even before the challenge. Even now I’m just slipping back into the discipline of writing even when I don’t want to do it. It’s hard. Without an outside driving force to push me along I find myself drifting. Even now I’m doing this to avoid working on my spec script. I’ve been planning to start posting here again for awhile but only actually wrote this when I was forced into a corner to avoid my script.

The way I fight the script is terrible. As if it is my enemy. I’ve had several well-meaning people suggest that if I like writing novels and short stories, and they are much easier for me (which they are- I can sit down and knock out a novel for three hours with little difficulty), that perhaps that’s a sign that I should focus on being a novelist. Which is an utterly logical supposition.

Just, it’s not accurate. Even if it was, I want to write movies and TV shows. That has always been my goal but, in my habit of not admitting what I want in case I can’t have it, I took that desire and used it to write everything except movies and TV shows. If I didn’t write them then I couldn’t be rejected so I could hold onto my hope. Stupid, but there is it.

Still, not accurate. My writing style is much more suited to screenplay format than it is novels. I like things happening and people talking. I do not like description, back story, long narration, an abundance of details, lots of introspection, emotional angst, or really anything that slows down the pace of people doing things. My personality is better suited to writing screenplays. I’ve got so many ideas I’ll never get to them all even if I never have another one. In basically all genres. Piles of ideas that I am genuinely excited about.

Writing a quality script can and does take time, I’m not knocking it, but it’s not nearly as long as a novel. One story I have in mind is set in near future, a scifi piece. I’m saying a script will take less than a year, including editing and polishing. A novel to cover the same territory? I don’t know for sure but I’m guessing at least two, easily more. Especially since my stuff requires heavy editing. So the idea of being able to get more done, more stories out there, is appealing.

I’m stuck because I haven’t done it before. My first novel didn’t happen for years, I started and quit a pile of them before I finally forced myself to finish one. Which felt like the hardest thing. But when it was over (it was a NaNo novel) I sat back and realized that it really hadn’t been that hard. I mean, it was. In a way. Yet most of the trouble was in my head. It wasn’t finding time, it wasn’t plot points or running out of ideas. I thought it was, at the time. But it was actually not believing it was possible. And as soon as that barrier was gone I was free to write more. I’ve written three additional novels (all 70,000 – 110,000 words) and started a couple of others.

That’s where I’m at with scripts. I’ve started a lot of them in the past. I have a ton of ideas. I keep picking up story books and outline books and books on how to format. I read blogs and emails lists. I do everything except actually finish a damn script. The sad part is that I know. I know that if I finish one the next one will be easier. I know that it’s Resistance in my head and it’s self-protecting and it’s an unwillingness to be vulnerable (in the sense of allowing myself to fail and write a sucky script). I know all that and yet I still hold the pen and stare at the page and write ten words in an hour.

But I’m not stopping. This script is getting done come hell or high water.

Oh yeahs, the blog. I have decided to make it whatever I want it to be and if no one reads it that’s OK. A place to talk about projects I’ve got in the works, creativity in general, and also my life as I want. No more trying to follow a formula or convince people to click on my posts or making sure all my posts fit my niche audience. I’m going to write out things that interest me and put them here in case they interest someone else. That’s all. And if they don’t it’s OK. And if they do, that’s OK too.

 

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