Thursday, July 31, 2008

Wonderful Life


I've realized recently that since graduation, my days can be divided into three types:

A) In which I write nothing. I don't even pretend I'm thinking about my script. These days I cook, I clean, I go running, I hang out with friends, I watch TV, I go to the library or read in the park, I remember to eat fruits and vegetables, I consider getting a pot of lavender or a cat. I am a normal, functioning human who is generally happy.

B) In which I write. Or at least I say I'm going to write. In reality I usually only accomplish one or two pages, five if it's a super good day. Most of the time is actually spent in self hatred, pretending to write, getting distracted by TV or the internet, and punishing myself by doing dishes.

C) In which I WRITE. These are the days I really. Fucking. Write. I don't eat, I don't drink, I hardly go to the bathroom, I don't pick up my phone, cups of half-drank tea or water surround me. Usually with consecutive days like these, I can pound out a script from anywhere between a month to a week. During this time I don't sleep: I pass out, and dream unsettling dreams.

The past few days have been C), and I finally finished my rewrite, as according to my angry vow that I will complete it within a month. I mainly sustain off of left overs during this time. On Tuesday, it wasn't until I got up to get another cup of water, did the warning signs finally reach my brain, and I realize that the food has gone sour. By then I finished half the bowl without noticing. Scenes after scenes are bulldozed through. Chunks of script are ripped out and new characters/scenes put in place. And around 11:30, I finished the script (which, might be total crap filled with spelling mistakes, but I refuse to think about it right now). By then my brain has been rendered into a lump of tofu. Electrically charged, but with no higher function than bean curd. My apartment is a mess. The dishes are piling out of the sink. I haven't ran for a while and adrenaline is at an all time low (although in the past I've been able to get adrenaline rushes from writing). I needed to vacuum. I REALLY needed to do my laundry. I can smell my trash rotting in the kitchen. I realized that I didn't pick up my grandmother's calls three times in a row.

It's funny, but I never thought I had to choose between living healthily like a normal person, or writing and feeling like there's meaning to my life. During days which I don't write, it never ceases to amaze me how much time I have to do so many things. Is that what normal people feel like? To have HOURS after work doing whatever they please? At times I feel that somehow I can REALLY WRITE and carve out an hour or two to make sure my living standards have not gone subhuman, but so far no luck. It seems that I either go all the way or not at all.

Perhaps, in a few years time, I'd be able to achieve a balance.

5 comments:

Zombie said...

Congrats on finishing the script!

Onyx Enforcer said...

I think what Austin meant to say was congrats on finishing draft 2. Now the real work begins. Mwwaahahaha!

Sassafras said...

Give me a stomach ache from staying up all night with 2 pots of black coffee and half a box of stale saltines with a finished draft show for it over a "normal" day with "time" to do "things." Balance can suck it.

DOA said...

finished draft? Whoo hoo! This new or back in the House days?

Janet said...

I will bring food this weekend (pot roast), and we can *think* about cleaning the apartment.
But, yes, usually success is traded with organs functions. Usually the liver goes first.