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I can’t explain this wonderful mood I’m in this morning… maybe because I’ve gotten to spend the last few days with my sister Christy and her little girls (with the announcement of the third on the way!!), maybe it’s the perfect temps outside, or the impending holiday weekend. What ever the reasons may be, I’ll take them.
I’ve been doing a lot of planning this week for how Bubble will unfold in the next few months. I met with our composer, Ted Speaker, on Tuesday and we talked about the many ideas he has planned. He never ceases to surprise me with his insight and direction. I’m excited to hear what he does for us. Like most people on this project, he is an active filmmaker himself, so looks like he will finish up his work in July along with Jim, our special effects guru and art director. Hopefully Bubble will have an active festival year once it is out in the world! This time around I want to try to attend as many festivals as we can. The most rewarding part of the whole process is always watching your film with other people, especially for the first time.
I am also doing really well with my writing. By this Sunday my goal is to hit page 20 of my feature-length script! Once I am finished with edits and revisions, I want to start submitting it to some select script competitions to see how it does. All I know is I am much, much better screenplay writer than I am an author. :D I’m really glad I changed my direction. It’s all about knowing your strengths and weaknesses. Weaknesses can be overcome with time, but it has to be something you are passionate enough about.
I have been getting back into running with great joy. I was reminded of a quote yesterday that I really love: A body in motion stays in motion. It’s so true. I was really slacking there for a while, and the less I ran, the less I wanted to run. But once I got back out there and broke the seal again, it easily became something I wanted to do as often as possible. I love feeling good, and running only boosts my overall optimism and energy.
FRIDAY!!! Always one of the best days of the week. I have been making a lot of progress on my feature script in the last few days. My outline is pretty solid, and I think I am going to hit page 10 of the script itself at some point this weekend. My loose goal is to do 10 pages a week (to get a complete rough draft by mid-July), but I think I can probably go faster than that. I’d love to have a second rough draft by the beginning of August for some select people to review. That’s the goal anyway… if I can stick to this, then if I happen to make it to the second round of the competition I entered I will be in a very good place for consideration.
ALSO – we saw Bubble for the first time Wednesday!!! I am so very, very happy with what we captured. The story is already present, and once we get the missing pieces from our pick-ups on June 1st then we will really be rolling. I meet with Ted next Tuesday to discuss score/sound, and Jim will also start his work soon on the CGI elements. James will be doing all the titles and branding, which will be very fun to place in. Joe did an amazing job putting all of the pieces together! I was prepared to still be in a very rough stage at this point, but it is looking good. There is nothing more motivating than watching a project turn into something special. I can’t wait for everyone to see it.
James and I have been doing good with our weight-loss, 3 1/2 weeks to go! I might extend that to 4 weeks…we will see how the progress goes. I would still like to get about 6-8 pounds lighter. I’ve been having MAJOR cravings for a sunny vacation near the water. I am also looking forward with all of my heart to Bonnaroo. I think this summer is going to be a fantastic one!
I came across an amazing article this morning shared by my friend Darrell Hazelrig, about “finding what you love and letting it kill you.” I think you will enjoy it, so I decided to share it in my blog today. In one short read in encapsulates the struggle and overwhelming joy that is chasing a creative dream… or anything you love for that matter. It might be painful at times, but there is nothing more rewarding in the end. Beautiful words.
This past weekend was jam-packed with activity, with the biggest news being that I finally got to see one of my all-time favorite bands play – Band of Horses! It wasn’t under the best circumstances though since it was pouring rain and pretty cold outside. At least it was memorable… I will never forget the sea of ponchos and sinking in the quicksand-like mud as he sang perfectly in front of us. I knew every song, every word. Their music makes me so happy.
The sun came out for a little while the next day, so James and I utilized our Six Flags season passes and had a free-for-all all over the park! All the lines for the rides were super short so we literally went crazy jumping on everything in our path. Rides I hate: Batman & The Ninja ( get a headache every time). Rides I LOVE: Goliath, Mind Bender & Superman. Rides that are still to scary for me to attempt: Acrophobia. I just can’t do it. But I promised James that the next we went I would make myself! There is also a new ride opening up this summer called the SkyScreamer, which looks like a nightmare come to life. It’s basically the traditional swings that you see at every theme park… but 24 STORIES ABOVE THE GROUND. I will keep you posted on if I am brave enough to try it out. Probably not.
This week one of my goals is to start getting into a regular routine with running again. While I’ve been maintaining a three miler a few times a week, I’ve noticed that I’m just not as regular as I used to be. Which is fine… going through phases is totally normal for me. You can’t stay super jazzed about something 100% of the time. I know running makes me feel good and gives me more energy, so I look forward to being more fit again.
Also on this week’s docket is to write write write. I want to do some character development exercises and freehand a bunch of notes on paper. I need to revisit my script schedule for an August deadline, and work backwards until I have weekly and daily milestones. There are few things I enjoy more than an assignment, so I think this is really good for me!
Somehow I thought I would be more worried, being only two days out from our shoot. Not that my mind isn’t racing every second of every day, because that is definitely a reality. This is an enormous challenge of epic proportions (especially Sunday), one that I would normally be scared to death of. But I somehow have peace in knowing that everything is going to work out. In fact, I am excited to be working on something that takes every ounce of creativity and organization that I have developed over my 34 years. Not only that, but it’s also utilizing the same energy from some über talented folks into one big ball of awesomeness. It’s a force to be reckoned with. All we can do now is buckle down and stay focused on the task at hand!
This week was also full of other kind of news – one beyond my wildest dreams (more on that in the coming weeks) and another that kind of broke my heart. Regarding the latter one, I think it was a big big big blessing in disguise. Instead of letting it discourage and bring me down, instead, it forced me to think outside of the box… and actually in the direction of my dreams. I think someone or something was looking out for me on that one, even though it appeared to be a set back on the outside. Maybe in this case I was lucky that I didn’t get what I asked for. Either way, I have full faith in my future and the path that I’m on. I am very, very lucky….and thus very, very grateful.
Now, time to have some fun!! Be sure to send us positive energy and thoughts this weekend.
It’s been a few days since I’ve checked in on my blog! To say I’ve been busy would be the understatement of the existence of time. First and foremost – WE REACHED OUR FUNDRAISING GOAL!! Holllllla. Thank you so very, very much to all of you who contributed or shared our project to your friends. In case you didn’t know, the story Bubble won over all the others. I am very happy about this, however, it would have been an honor to make any of the three. Bubble will be thrilling, beautiful and haunting. We plan to post a lot leading up to production next week to keep you all in the loop with our process.
Other things have been going on behind the scenes which have been making this April busier than usual. James moved into a new house last weekend, so we spent the better part of Saturday and Sunday getting that done. This week there has been a lot of preparation for a big event related to my 9-5 which took place last night, and was a big hit! So glad it is now in the books and will be remembered fondly. Tonight- I am doing absolutely nothing nothing nothing. Just going to sit back and kick it with the Baby Kitty!
I am honestly surprised that I could even do a blog post today due to exhaustion. But all I could think about this morning was writing, as it was very high on my list of things to do today. I love that my blog is so important to me, and is ingrained in my daily thinking.
And last but not least, Crush will be screening this weekend at the Ozark Foothills Film Festival! It will open for the feature The Romance of Loneliness, which Rebecca and I are both so proud of. We wish we could be there!!
My nieces have changed my world. I don’t think I quite appreciated the innocence and spirit of a child until they came around. I always said that I felt like I had had enough of babies and kids growing up as the oldest child of four. I remember changing diapers and carrying them around on my hip at a very young age. I was babysitting by age 10 or so and was thoroughly trained in the responsibilities of looking after another human being. But now I feel like it is a much different experience being around little ones. Last night Lily kept asking me to play with her in the sweetest little voice, and just having me by her side made her whole world. When mom put her down to sleep, we could hear her on the baby monitor saying… “I love you, I love you, Goodnight Mimi! Sweet Dreams Mimi! Goodnight! I love you!” After about ten minutes of this heartbreaking chatter, mom let me go and bring her back upstairs. The whole way back I told her how special she was and how much we loved her. She can now understand most of what we say, and it is the sweetest thing to see a child comprehend that they are completely adored. My other two nieces Anna and Lucy are in Disney World right now enjoying all things magical and fun. Keep the pictures coming Christy!
This weekend is the one year anniversary from the first day I met James. I still remember it like it was yesterday – this really nice, energetic, passionate soul sat down next to me at a group dinner at Rojo. We exchanged Instagram handles.. and the rest is history! hahaha I did get to spend a little more time with him that weekend before he continued on his documentary adventure around the south. After he left we talked every single day until he returned home to Atlanta about a month later, where we then had our first official date. Sometimes I think time flies by… but when I think about all that we have done in the last 365 days I realize we have taken advantage of every single moment. We already have so many memories. Thanks James for coming into my life and making it shine.
Speaking of us, as most of you know we are taking on a short film project together in the coming months! You can follow our blog here, or stay tuned to news on our Four x Facebook page. We are launching some pretty exciting things next week that I hope you all will want to be a part of. Most of all, I can’t wait to share the three short stories I have been working on!
There are so many exciting things happening right now, it’s hard to sit still… or even fall asleep at night. Through time I have figured out that I thrive on waves of activity, especially goals that fall within a few months range. As I do more and more film work, I realize it is the essence of everything I feel passion for. Process, creativity, ideas, goal setting, marketing, collaboration and end product. I love every single second of it.
As we get close to finishing up with Crush, Rebecca and I have each decided to move forward with our own independent short film projects (with features on the horizon). I am so excited to see what she does next… I got the honor of hearing some of her ideas in Oxford and they are truly up her alley. I am proceeding with my three short stories idea, then in the coming weeks letting YOU decide which one I am going to make. I’ve got an amazing team in place with the goal of shooting in mid April. After our first production meeting early next week, I will reveal more of our plans. I can say this – all the stories involve an element of magic and fantasy. Whichever one is chosen should be a really beautiful and emotional piece.
One more note before I wrap up the film speak… we had such an amazing time at the Oxford Film Festival!! Seriously one of the best festival experiences we’ve had on this circuit. So many of the filmmakers attended, the staff was on top of it all, the programming was fantastic and the parties/networking priceless. Plus, Oxford is a fun little town bursting with artists of all kinds and delicious dining options. If you love film festivals, definitely mark your calendar to attend next year.
Whether you are an artist or any other kind of adventurous soul, ongoing education is a huge part of developing your passions. We never stop learning. I’m never going to be at a place where I know everything about a specific subject or pastime. I’m also constantly learning about myself while going from project to project. I observe how I react to different situations and people, always trying to modify for the best results. Above all though, I have found that if your intentions are good and your actions sincere, good karma is always around the corner. I will take as much of that as I can get.
Inspiration can be found in so many unexpected places. For about a month now I’ve been hearing about this small team in Birmingham who have started making honey under the name We Three Beeks. They release small batches here and there for the public to buy, and luckily James and I scored two honey bears from their most recent one. When I went to pick them up yesterday from Freshfully, I discovered that they were very, very mini… two bears easily fit in the palm of my hand. That visual made me realize the treasure we had scored for ourselves. This wasn’t just any honey, it was honey made by the hands of passionate people pursuing a dream. I went home and did some more research on these creative folks, and discovered their Tumblr site full of photos and stories. You should definitely check it out. There is nothing more inspiring than everyday people making things happen, then sharing it with the world. Their joy and drive is contagious.
Everywhere you look you will find people taking action on their passions. Artisan products are so easy to come by these days. You can feel the energy from something hand-made with love. Whether it’s food, furniture, art or initiatives, you can only benefit from supporting and enjoying the product. I think that’s why I love partaking in food adventures so much as it allows me to watch another creative spirit in action. It’s ideas expressed through something you get to put into your body…. the best way of all to manifest the posi vibes.
Last night I wrapped up story #2 in my three short story series, in preparation for choosing one to make into a short film in the coming months. I’ve decided that once I am finished writing, I am going to do a short synopsis on each one and let you guys pick which story you like the best! I will probably have another Kickstarter campaign to raise what I need, but I also plan to fund it on my end as well. More details coming soon, should be a lot of fun! James is helping me brainstorm some ideas to make it a unique fundraising experience. Crowdsourcing isn’t my favorite thing to do, but I guess it’s all in how you look at it. Projects that wouldn’t otherwise see the light of day get made because of support from their communities. It also gives a sense of ownership and satisfaction to those who participate… or at least that’s how I feel when I give to someone else’s project.
My ultimate goal still remains the same: to fund my own feature film in 2014 through completion of my book. I feel like a broken record saying that, but sometimes writing it is more for myself than anything else. I wish I could just tattoo it on my forehead so I could literally be reminded every time I look in the mirror. I am the only person who can make it happen. Sometimes I feel like once I get these two things under my belt, future long-range projects such as those will be easier to execute. I’ve heard that several times from friends who have written books or made feature films. I’m sure it will be the same for me as well…hopefully. Either way, I strive daily to just enjoy the process and find excitement in the mini milestones. It excites my soul to sit down in a coffee shop with a decaf hot tea, my notebook and laptop with nothing but hours ahead of me dedicated to being creative.
Today I blog as a 34-year-old for the first time! I had the best best best birthday weekend, with everything I could have hoped for – time with family, delicious food (thanks Pushstart Kitchen and Rawle Fraser!), time outdoors, adventures and an abundance of love. Throw in a little Valentine’s Day celebration and you have the perfect weekend. Thanks to everyone who wished me a happy birthday!
Birthdays are the start of a new year in a lot of ways, so I thought I would spend a little time updating you all on my 2013 goals. My writing is going very well… I’m not writing an hour every day as I hoped I would, but I’ve made more progress than ever before since the beginning of the year. Not only that, I’ve taken on a new short story goal for the next week or two. My plan is to write three short stories (one of them already done), then possibly choose one to make a short film out of over the course of the next 3-4 months. I feel like waiting until I have a finished novel is just too long before tackling another film project. After talking with Rebecca about the success of Crush (which is showing no signs of stopping), we both feel that independently we should be keeping the momentum up. This weekend at the Oxford Film Festival we plan to do a creative brainstorming session to see which individual directions make the most sense. We will also have Vero & James with us on the trip, so that will double the creative energy.
James and I are still doing really well with our weight-loss. I am down about 13 pounds, and he’s lost 18! I know I’ve said this about 20 times already, but it is so helpful to have him on this journey with me. Mostly because we both get “hangry” at about the same times (a fierce combination of anger and hunger), and we also hold each other accountable. Usually I am a loner with it comes to physical initiatives, but without a doubt we are better as a team.
I have found a significant key to life happiness – and that is doing. Talking and dreaming have their rightful and rewarding place, but actually taking the steps to achieve is where the joy lies. In some ways it’s even better than the final product of your actions. I love being in an active state of doing at all times. There is a thrill in problem solving, a mystery in the unknown and a fulfillment in the tiniest steps along the way. As long as I’m doing, I’m happy.
Dang, I have a cold. Lucky it isn’t anything worse, but I still feel like a slug stuck in bubble gum. But there is some good news – I have lost 8.5 pounds! James has lost 10. Crazy to think that we are both basically halfway towards our goals. In the moment time seems to pass slowly when you are counting calories, however looking back it has actually gone by pretty fast. We are both looking forward to our maintenance phase so we can start learning how to eat again on a normal caloric budget. One thing we’ve both done well is to not call our new way of eating a diet, instead we’ve both embraced it as a lifestyle change. We have discovered the joy (and frugalness) of sharing entrees instead of getting our own. We both love having a variety of foods so sharing gives us the opportunity to try more while eating less.
Yesterday was James’ birthday! We had a great time this weekend celebrating the occasion. I’m not kidding when I say that a strikingly large number of my good friends were born in the month of January. Almost every day there is another person I know well to say happy birthday to. On another awesome note, we’ve officially entered into Aquarius, my own birthday sign. In a little over three weeks I will be 34! Turning another year older always makes me think about my life plans and dreams. Last night I made a rough grid of what I’d like to accomplish or have happen to me in the next 10 years or so. I know you can’t predict the future, but you can definitely steer it in the right direction.
More good news: We’ve all made it past the most depressing day of the year – Monday, January 21st. This online article from has some good advice and tricks to help get you through these dreary days. Before we know it, spring and summer will be here again to brighten our worlds.
Right now the Sundance and Slamdance Film Festivals are going on in Park City, Utah. One of my bigger goals is to one day have a feature film in one of the two. I know in order to get there, I must write my book first which will hopefully either fully fund or partially fund that film project. I think it’s a good plan, and I know I can do it. I’ve been writing really well the past few weeks, but I know I must keep pushing forward on a consistent basis. Sometimes while writing I think about how much more there is still left to do, and I get overwhelmed. So tonight I am going to break it down into mini goals and milestones. I want to be finished with it by the end of the year, no matter how much work and time it takes me. I will fully dedicate myself to this one project above all other personal initiatives for 2013. Because once it’s finished, I feel like it will be a total game changer for my life path.