A half a year ago, I went to this screenplay wright mixer. I dressed up, printed out my own DIY business cards, and took the train straight from work. I remember, it was drizzling a bit and I was kind of scared I’d get sick since I didn't bring an umbrella with me.
I spent about eight dollars and some change in train fare, and another fudging $15 for one glass of liquid courage. To be honest, I really didn't get the point of the mixer. People who knew each other huddled together talking without ever opening up to others. People who approached others were mostly selling their editing and/or script analysis services for fees I couldn't possibly afford. When I asked what was the point of the said event, I was told that it was a place to meet other writers. That's good and all but then what?
But I digress. (I tend to ramble whether in verbal or written form.)
I met this guy at the mixer. We exchanged pleasantries, asked each other where we were from, and what kind of things we write. So I told him about me specializing in horror content— ghosts, monsters, myth, and legends.
As I told you, people who were there approaching other people were mostly selling something. This guy was hard selling his script analysis services. And I kept rejecting that in light of my financial standing. I was already regretting the $20+ I spent that night, charging me fifty bucks to read my work would likely send me jumping off the Golden Gate Bridge.
Since I wasn't budging, he questioned my determination to be a writer. He asked me, “How long have you seriously been writing?”
I told him, I’ve been writing since I was 12; screenplay writing since 17; that I majored in writing for college…
“No, how long have you been seriously writing? Like consistently writing every day?”
At that moment I was insulted. Really insulted. It felt like he indirectly told me that I’m not really a writer; and that my history as a writing student meant nothing; that my college degree from one of the top universities didn't matter; that writing is just a hobby because I couldn't put in more time for it.
I excused myself and left. Or maybe he left. I don't really remember anymore.
I just remember the feeling of contempt I had.
And the feeling that I had to show him I’m a serious fucking writer; I will show him that I write every fucking day.
It took me a while to get my routine down. I spend 9-10 hours at work, five days a week. I'm sorta diabetic, so I have to exercise at least 30 minutes a day. My hip misalignment calls for another 30-minute yoga-stretching-therapy of sorts, cause it hurts like hell if I don't (I maxed out one of my credit cards at a chiropractor which didn't help at all). I spend one cumulative hour in commuting. I sleep at least six hours, can't go under that, else I'd be dropping ceramic bowls at work. Lunch break is spent studying screenplays or books, while dinner is the only hour and a half I spend with the mom.
If you don't have a problem with math, I have 4 hours surplus daily I could allocate for writing. But because I’m bad at math, I end up with 2 hours a day.
I’ve been writing everyday ever since (except of course when I was on vacation, and when I was in the middle of a bug genocide).
I now recognize that the guy at the mixer had a point. People make time for hobbies, whether it’s crafting, or cosplaying, or writing fanfics. People make time to read tweets and FB posts, and check Snapchat filters.
You give more time, and it becomes a serious endeavor.
Then you wouldn't be needing motivation because you're already motivated. Your body and mind would tell you it's time to write. You get agitated when you don't hit your word count goals. And you’d be itching until you've delivered your piece.
[CONFESSION: I won't be able to finish 4 short stories for Halloween. However, I’d be giving you ONE pretty long short story that I truly believe has potential. It’ll be posted in its first draft form, though, and update it after getting it through a proofreader and an editor.]
Look at that 739 words for the blog alone.
Gotta go back to the short story now.
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