Monday, 31 January 2011

473 Not Very Good Words on Success (& all that other stuff)

Preface: I wrote some good blogs last week. This is not one of them. They can’t all be winners.

“What does that kind of risk look like?”

I’m in a men’s group that meets regularly to talk about, well, everything. It’s not a Bible study and it’s not an accountability group. It’s a life examination, a place where no question is out of bounds, and the only answers required are honest ones. We were meeting a couple of weeks back and I was talking about my life—hopes and disappointments, possibilities. One of the guys looked at me and asked, “what is ‘success’ for you?”

I couldn’t answer him. But after this meander through risk/failure/inspiration/work I thought I could put words to it. Over the weekend I thought about it and planned to write it today. Then Donald Miller went and wrote it for me.

Or rather, I should say that’s what I’d like my definition to be. With all respect Mr. Miller, but it’s easier for that to be true when you’ve already written a best seller.

But then again, success is a head game. How much is enough? Are you ever satisfied? Is it even healthy to strive for success? Shouldn’t it be enough to earn a decent wage and raise my kids in health and safety?

Head game.

The truth is that while I should be satisfied with what I have and call it success, I’m not. I want a WGA. I want a Pulitzer. I want to be a Show Runner. Is that very Christian of me?

I know I was made to tell stories. I know I haven’t told the really good ones yet. I can feel them, rumbling around in the basement, snorting with impatience, waiting to see the light of day.

So if I haven’t met with success yet, and if my problem is that I don’t risk enough, where do I begin?

I let it drop a few days back that I have a goal of four feature-length scripts this year. Two for stage and two for screen. I have the idea for one, and the genre for another. I also let it drop that I’m going to write one here, on the blog.

Since I first started blogging, I always held my best ideas back, because I wanted to “make something of them.” We see how far that’s gotten me. So I’m throwing it out. I’m going to take (in my mind) a monumental risk and write a script in front of you in real time. Wide open to your comments, critique, ridicule and possible theft.

Although blogging in the traditional sense (you know, thought vomit, or “personal observation”) is good for me, I’m a dialogue writer. That’s what I should be doing.

One big risk that (hopefully) leads to one small success.

1 comment:

MeLissa said...

This just became one of my top three favorite posts. Maybe because it has the most action steps in it? Maybe because I now have it writing that I get to read another screenplay from you? Maybe because you walked through taking some big risks? Not sure. Still good.