I’ve been looking for this feeling ever since 1997 – the feeling of fear, change and immense excitement. When I was 18 years old, I boarded a plane to Chicago as a fresh high school graduate to attend summer sessions at The School of the Art Institute of Chicago. This may not seem like a big deal to most – lots of kids leave at this age for school. But I knew something was different, I knew my life would never be the same. My time as a child, the oldest of four, living in a small suburb of Birmingham was coming to a close. I was following a dream to be an artist… any kind really…and was taking the actions to make it so. In Chicago I interacted with so many kinds of people from all over the United States, and the world. My horizons broadened ten-fold in a matter of days. People teased me for my southern accent, but in a charming way. I knew I was different too, just like these other creative souls surrounding me. I wasn’t a minority any more. In fact it was there that I learned that I would have to work very, very hard in order to stand out.
I find myself with this same feeling, right this very second. Last week I announced on Facebook that I got accepted in the Cucalorus Film Festival creative residency program, where I will spend 2.5 months developing and writing my first feature film. More on that in a minute! Also at this time, two other potential world-changing projects are happening – one scheduled for mid-March (which we will talk about closer to time), and then our next short film Little Cabbage, to be filmed in late April. Big things are happening for both, due to the amount of work that James and I have already put into them. These things don’t happen on their own. They have to be born in the mind, then acted upon, pursued, then fought for (repeatedly). I am ready to take on these monster challenges.
I have a feeling my time in Wilmington, NC for my creative residency is going to start a new joyous chapter. James takes me up this Friday… only four days away! My 35th birthday is also next Monday, signaling a true beginning. What are my plans with this feature? I will submit to the Sundance Screenwriters Lab again (last year I submitted a feature that I later decided wasn’t the right first project for me). No matter what though we hope to make it in the first part of 2015. I also want to develop other concepts that I have for features down the road, start perfecting the art of working on more than one project at a time.
That’s it for now… please send all good vibes our way as we cross your mind in the coming months. Know that James and I are working our tails off to make some big things happen… and we’d have it no other way.