Thursday, May 10, 2007

And on it Goes

I had had a job interview last week that I thought went well. Not only was I happy with just having an interview, but having one that I thought went well and was for a job I could actually care about was a much needed breath of fresh air. But the problem with fresh air is that stale, polluted air always tastes that much worse afterward. I didn't get the job.

So the job search goes on. When I told my mother that the company had gone with someone else, she just shrugged her shoulders and said, "Oh, ok." Either, she already knew, because my aunt had most likely told her. Or, she knows that it is never easy. I had made the mistake of putting more faith in getting the job than I probably should have, but doing that lifted my spirits in what sometimes seems like a soul-crushing job hunt. In a way, the near miss, while pissing me off, also gave me a temporary reprieve from sending out resumes to recharge my batteries and jump back on the proverbial horse. In an odd way, not getting the job gave me the boost to keep applying (though, obviously, had I gotten the job, that would have been better).

Also, the writing goes on. The League is about to have its first meeting, in about a week. One of the things that will be read there, I hope, will be the first draft of the first act of my play. I'm not going to kid myself into thinking that it is very good, but first drafts aren't usually. LoKor wrote earlier about needing to finish a draft he knew he wasn't going to use in order to lay the foundation. That's what I'm doing. I'm hoping to be able to use more of my first draft than LoKor does, but it's the same thing. Foundation.

It took me a long time to realize that aiming for perfection is not always wise. Yes, in the end, the point of writing dozens of drafts is to have the best possible screenplay, play, novel, comic book, or porn script possible. But none of us are going to hit gold the first go around. And even if we seem to, we can't think we will. Or nothing will ever get written. I used to spend so much time trying to one up each line, getting cleverer and smarter and deeper with each next sentence that I'd write myself out. I would burn out two pages in because I was not bothering to just write; I was trying to do the impossible. I was sacrificing the plot for words that, in a film at least, would get twisted by the actors anyway. So now I aim lower. If people understand the action, get what I'm trying to say, don't feel I've wasted the past four years, and stay awake through the whole thing, then I think that I've gotten the first draft to do what it basically needed to do.

It took me even longer to realize that I need to write every day. Not everyone does. I think that most of us do, however. But for me, it's more than a discipline. It's more than just getting work done. I actually feel better when I write every day. The sun seems a bit brighter, the sky is a bit bluer, and I notice an extra bounce in my step. When I don't write every day, as I haven't yesterday or today, I tend to feel... dark inside. Like there's black tar slowing me down, pulling me down, trying to drown out the life. It's surprising what a difference a day can make for me, but I really do feel as if something is wrong when I don't write. I feel like the day's been wasted and I'm heading down a spiraling path, which I know is not going to be a fun ride.

So I try to write. Every day. To keep the sun bright and the sky blue and the storm at bay. And it usually helps. Especially if I'm letting the writing come without trying to be perfect.

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