Renewed Vigor – Resolutions and Results!
Oh hai everyone! How is everyone doing? Did you have a good holiday break? Catch up on some much needed rest? Spend time with the family? Make some resolutions? Yeah, me too. 2017 was a year of ups and downs for me. So much so that I stopped posting on the blog for the last few months because I needed to focus on a variety of things, including a home remodeling side job I was working at nights from October – November, NaNoWriMo in November (which I barely finished with the requisite 50k words typed), and a hectic December/Christmas schedule. Bottomline: I’ve been super busy!
I did have a good holiday break. I finally found a new job, which was a 5 year Herculean task that I started to believe I was never going to accomplish. The new job came right at Christmas time, so I ended up getting some time off, which I wisely used as an opportunity to spend with family and get a ton of rest. While working my previous job, I averaged about 4 hours of sleep per night, so when I am off from work I tend to sleep 10+ hours. My body was quite pleased with me for the multiple days hibernation it felt like it got.
I made some resolutions on the 1st of January, as I am sure that many of you did. It’s a small list, as I wanted it to be attainable this year.
- Spend more time with my wife & kids
- Finish my first novel and write my latest screenplay outline
- Sell a screenplay (anybody looking for a rom-com, action, or horror movie script?)
- Exercise more
- Finally start my YouTube channel & Twitch stream
Just 5 things. Short, sweet, and to the point. I like it. It’s already proving attainable and that’s got me like…
Just sayin’, 2018 has started off pretty good for me and I want it to keep heading in that direction. Positivity is key. In that spirit I am going to tackle this year with a newfound appreciation for life and my personal potential.
Let’s take a quick look at each goal and how they are going so far:
Spend more time with the family: This one is going gangbusters! I have spent a crazy amount of time with the family (wife and kids) so far (thanks new job!), had a New Year’s dinner with my in-laws, and I even got to drive out of town and go see my parents, sister, and nephews. We’re even talking about taking a road trip back down to see the fam again in another month or so. All in all, I couldn’t be happier with how this is one is going.
Finish my first novel and write my latest screenplay: This is near and dear to my heart. I have been working on this novel for upwards of 3 years. It’s still a few chapters shy of a book, however steady progress has been made in these first two weeks of January. I suspect it will take a few more months before I actually have a completed first draft of my novel. The thought of completing it makes me smile from ear to ear as it will signify the finishing of a project. I have a huge problem with focus. I like to start ten different projects and then leave them kind of dangling in various states of completion. Case in point, I have another novel that I started writing while still trying to write the original novel. I somehow made it halfway through writing the outlined second novel before coming back to the first one that was eighty percent written. I jot little notes down a lot, as I have ideas all the time, and some of them end up as shorts on this blog, and others as just ideas that may one day become a project. I think too much, and this resolution is all about focus, so I am focusing on finishing the first novel, and then a screenwriting project I’ve been brewing for the last year. The screenplay should be a blast to write. It’s way out of my comfort zone, as it is a story told through a narrative about two characters who have communication barriers, and as such a series of vignettes gives the viewer a sense of what is going on between the main characters and also gives them insight into how these things work for a large variety of diverse characters that are all going through a specific point in their lives. It’s an ambitious project for me, daunting as all hell, but I can’t wait to get started writing it… just not ’til I finish my novel.
Sell a screenplay: The great white buffalo. I’ve been chasing this dream for over 15 years… and that’s half true. I say half true, because I have been half-ass chasing this goal. I wrote a bunch of spec scripts way back in 2001 – 2003. My mission statement was simple (and still is) write a movie that I would want to watch and that I feel like I’ve never seen before. I wrote a nerdy romantic comedy, a quirky action movie about assassins, and a horror movie that will keep you guessing even after the credits roll. At the time that I wrote these scripts, I was freshly married and didn’t have kids. 2003 brought the birth of my son, and with him the time I had to work on these kind of projects shrank. In the years that followed, two daughters were born as well and my time shrank even further. I did re-draft the screenplays a few times. I even attempted a few screenwriting competitions. In 2007, I sent a whole lot of “letters of inquiry” to producers, agents, and production companies. I got no response. Nothing. I just let it all slide because I lost hope. Recently, I was given an opportunity by an old friend from high school, who was in contact with another friend from high school that worked in the film industry, to send my three scripts to be read. So I re-drafted the scripts again (2 of them needed it so bad – the owrld has changed significantly in 10 years), and sent them to my friend to be forwarded along. Hopefully something comes of this, although it is highly possible that nothing will come of it. Truthfully, I was just over the moon at the idea of someone reading them! I’m hoping for feedback at the least. I have some close friends that have read them, but I don’t feel as if they’ve been entirely objective in their criticism (or lack thereof as the case has often been). A fresh opinion from someone who isn’t close to me will be a welcome change from the comments I often hear. Maybe if the insider likes one or two of them he can pass them along to someone who might be looking to make a movie like what I’ve written… and the rest will be history. I live in hope! What this truly means is that I need to start sending the “letters of inquiry” out again, and leveraging social media and the digital age to see if I can’t drum up some interested parties for my written work. I love writing, and if I could start selling my work, then perhaps one day I could actually quit my day job and make writing my day job. That is the end goal. To be able to provide for my family doing the thing that I love to do!
Exercise more: Yes, I know this is a tired resolution trope, but it’s so true. I got a lot of unintended exercise working that home remodel job, and I actually felt great afterwards. So… gotta keep that exercise train rolling steady so I can get fit in ’18! ‘Nuff said!
Finally start my YouTube channel and Twitch stream: I’m a gamer. I love to play video games. It can be a kryptonite to my creativity, so it is imperative that I find a way to make it work for me. The answer – YouTube and Twitch. I’m a pretty funny dude, can talk forever, super opinionated about a ton of stuff, and I can play just about any type of video game (with the exception of most sports games – lack of interest). It makes absolute sense to me to try and turn my love for games into dollar dollar bills y’all. The key will be finding a game, or a theme, that will draw in viewers and build my subscriber base. I imagine their will be a bit of trial and error before I find a good rhythm. I don’t suspect that I’ll make much money this year doing it, but I hope to at least get a solid foundation set that I can grow in 2019. Ultimately, I’d love to start a Patreon and make exclusive content for subscribers while still making my regular videos on YouTube and streaming on Twitch. If I could get a dedicated group of subscribers, it could be a nice alternate means of income and a solid justification for my gaming addiction. I mean, c’mon now… what gamer doesn’t want to get paid for playing games? I plan on buying the couple pieces of equipment I need in February after the smoke finally settles from Christmas spending and whatnot. I will make an official announcement here on the blog when I finally launch my videos and stream schedule. Stay tuned for me deets!
That’s it for now! I plan on having a great year in 2018. I am well rested and energized to succeed. I have a few projects in the works, and a few prospects for how to get them up and running. If all goes to plan, I will have family time in abundance, tons of writing done, a script sold, a fit bod, and lots of videos of my being a dink while I play video games. Like I said, 2018 is gonna be a great year! I hope yours will be too.