The Year of The Writer
The turn of this year has really been an eye-opener for me; a real revelation, if you will. This year has already started with a bang with an orange grown baby reality star being the president of the United States and me saving a bunch of money on my car insurance. There is always a silver-lining, am I, right?
But with the all bizarre and wackiness of the election results and the next four years more likely to become the backdrop of a Mad Max movie, my feelings for this year is basically… YOLO.
Why “Yolo”? Because, damnit, I am a motherfing writer and I have nothing to show for it! I mean, yea, I have this blog and I love my blog. This blog is my little diary where I write about my boring, shy, mediocre life and create weird stories and poems that flow through my odd mind in hopes that somewhere…anywhere… someone would read it and say, “Hey, this crazy broad is all right”.
And I am.
I WANT MORE!
The love I have for film, television, and books is greater than Trump’s love for Twitter and Hilary’s love for balloons and pants suits. It is that big, people! All with those three pleasures I say to myself, “Hey, I can do that”. And I want to do that.
Screenwriting is a dream of mine. In high school, I wrote for the drama club. By my senior year, I was the sole writer. The play was a western comedy based in a saloon. My mom was so proud, telling people how proud she was that her black daughter was the writer for white actors (Awkward). It was at that moment that I knew that this was something I could do for a living. Of course, writing books will always be my number one, but there is something about watching people acting your stories out. No longer do you have to envision it in your head; daydreaming as you drive and forgetting how you made it home without incident (Am I a sorceress?). I wanted to be this famous screenwriter, making movies that leave people talking about it for weeks, I knew that I would have to either work my way to Los Angeles by either going to school or shaking it for dollar bills.
Well, I have been in Los Angeles for the past five years. Sure, most of those years I spent serving in the Navy and being deployed, but there is no excuse for the rest. NOT THIS YEAR! I guess that is what a breakup does to you. What a cliché that is: a woman breaking up with her boyfriend and then, that is when she decides to go back to school? Change her hair? Workout? Why in the hell was I in a relationship in the first place if I wasn’t doing all that while we were together?
Either way, after breaking up with my ex, I decided that I needed to “do me”.
A F***ING CLICHÉ! UGH!
But seriously, I decided to figure out what I am going to do with my life and writing is the only thing that came to mind. Ok, I already have my blog, but what more could I do?
Write a freaking, script!
I wrote my first television pilot (Certifiable, in Literary Works). I submitted it to Amazon Studios that was downloaded fourteen times before being rejected. Sad face, but the world still turns. I decided to not let that deter me. After Googling on how to get my script read, I discovered that entering it in contests can really help. The only problem? The freaking fees! Who do they think my father is, Daddy Warbucks?! I’m sorry, but I’m not willing to pay $60 for an entry fee to only find out that my script isn’t what they are looking for. I’m too cheap for that.
After taking some deep soul searching and some talk with my bank account, I decided to give in to two contests. Mainly because they were the cheapest. Sue me (don’t really because you and I will both be disappointed).
Why do these contests take so long to tell us the winner? I am still waiting for the list of winners and finalists. UGH.
No fear! Stage32.com is here!
What is Stage32.com? Well, this website is a great website that I happened to stumble upon in the forum of Amazon Studios. It is basically a website where people in the film industry can network and connect. Is this heaven? I joined in August and attended the first Writer’s Meetup down in Hollywood. It was held at this Tavern with football fans and drunkards. Classy. There, I talked to a few people who were veterans in the business as well as virgins looking for pointers. I was one of those virgins.
A conversation sparked between a screenwriter who recently created his own production company with his friend. They mostly do commercials and music videos; however, they were to fly out to New York in the next few days to make a short film.
I wanted his life.
As the conversation continued, he began telling me about how cut-throat screenwriting is; how agonizingly long writing the perfect script can be. He stated at he worked on a movie script for the past year, how he was so close to TNT buying a drama pilot he cowrote before they switched presidents and the new president wanted nothing to do with what the old one wanted. Cut-throat.
Two hours came and went, and the thoughts I had about screenwriting were forever changed. Getting your foot into the door was harder than what I expected. To me, all a writer had to have was a good story that was compelling and BAM, you are in there like swimwear.
Not the case. A new writer should be happy if they even find the damn door for their foot to get in.
I’m not going to lie, I was a bit discouraged yet excited. Weird, right? My mind was full of doubt and ideas. Either way, I knew that being a part of that website was the best thing for me. My craft needed to be perfected. I needed to find my niche; something that was the same but different. Does that make sense? The man became my mentor and he didn’t even know it. I was the mere grasshopper. Like a nerd, I was the only wrote who brought a notepad for notes. Well, I’m glad I did because there was a boatload of stuff I needed to do. First, I needed to redo my script. Of course, I think it is funny because I’m freaking hilarious; however, after leaving it alone for a week, I realized that it needs some… A LOT… of tweaking.
Another thing is that I needed more than that one script. Like, COME ON! I’m better than that! With this big head of mine, I know I can come up with something superb. It was the prime example of not placing all my eggs in one basket. In this industry, you cannot rely on one script to get you to where you need to be. One monkey doesn’t stop one show, but one script can make you SOL! Movie and television producers want to see a collection of your work to compare with what you first give them. I can just picture my virgin behind handing them one script and them, staring at me with their judgmental eyes asking, “That’s it?”. Then, I would look up at them with this dumb expression; clueless. This means that I need to really buckle down and put all these daydreams on paper.
Last, but not least, I needed the proper training and education. Yea, I can Google advice and information about the entire screenwriting process, but to get ahead in this world—world being the TV and Film Industry—I needed the required education. Like everything else in society, it doesn’t matter how good you are, if you don’t have that paper, you have nothing. I needed that paper.
In comes film school.
A girl I went to boot camp with posted on her Facebook how she was putting that GI Bill to good use and enrolling in The Los Angeles Film School.
That was perfect… however, with work and my kids, how would I find the time to attend a 36-month program?
Hello, Online Classes!
Good ol, Online Classes—classes for the overworked, the anti-social, and the mother who is trying to do it all. How does she do it? I’ll tell you—with online classes.
So, here I am, ready to embark on this writing journey for this year and I am ready! No more excuses. Yes, the journey will be a rough one. There will be moments when I won’t feel like writing. And yea, after dealing with work, kids, and the house, I will be tired as hell. I might even fight a b**** or two because of how tired I am, but I will write and write some more. The year 2017 will be the year that I can finally say I am a writer or second guessing myself. I will be able to say I am a writer and mean it; can back up my s***. Half of one month down, and eleven and a half more to go, America. I’M READY!
In a world, where pussy is grabbed, this p***y will grab back!!!