I like setting big, stupidly crazy-ass goals. Why? I don’t know. Maybe because secretly I’m a megalomaniac? Maybe because life gets tedious and boring without them? Maybe because I’m f$%-ed up in the head?
Whatever the reason is, on January 1, 2011 I declared publicly “2011 will be the year that people everywhere will see the world through my camera.” A few people applauded me for making such a bold statement. I’m sure the rest just thought I was delusional.
Either way, a few months later, while in Brazil, I had completely forgotten that I had made such an absurd declaration. However, when Gizmodo ran a feature on a video I had posted to Vimeo, I realized that my prophecy had been fulfilled. Could it be that big, crazy-ass goals speak to our subconscious somehow, becoming self-fulfilling prophecies? I’d like to think so.
So in January of 2012, what do you think I did? Of course, I made another crazy-ass goal. I decided 2012 would be the year I would write, direct and star in a feature film.
Er, wait a minute—back up. What exactly is a “feature” film, anyways?
Let’s ask my constant life-companion (who needs a spouse, anyways?) and source of practically all knowledge I may think have…Wikipedia:
“According to the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences….a feature film runs for 40 minutes or longer, while the Screen Actors Guild states that it is 80 minutes or longer.”
I’m going to stick with the Academy’s definition. As much of a glutton for punishment as I am, I think a 40-minute film is much more doable, and besides, quality is more important than quantity. I suspect my films will get longer and longer each year as the task of making a feature becomes less daunting.
OOPS…I DID SOMETHING REALLY CRAZY
So I had already set out to write, direct, and star in a feature film this year. And then I did something a little nuts. I realized that besides filmmaking, my other true passion is writing. So I wrote a novel.
That’s right. In just one month, I wrote my first novel.
Oh crap! What was I thinking? I just opened another huge can of worms!
Now that I wrote a novel, I’m officially a writer! Oh, sh*$. That’s kind of an important and time-consuming life…thingee. And I can’t just leave that whole bag to my one measly little manuscript.
WHAT TO DO…?
So I thought long and hard about what to do. At length, I decided I would pursue both my passions with full vigor.
There are plenty of precedents for writer/filmmakers. Steven Pressfield, Jonathan Nolan, Stephen King, William Gibson, to name a few. The two media seem inseparably interconnected.
Besides, many of my biggest heroes (like Bruce Lee) are interdisciplinary.
Okay, so I’m going to go full throttle with both the writing and the filmmaking thing.
THE MASTER OF BIG CRAZY-ASS GOALS
Around the same time, I also started reading the Art of Nonconformity Blog by Chris Guillebeau. My hat is off to Mr. Guillebeau. He set perhaps the most impressive goal I’ve seen, ever. To visit every country in the world by the age of 35. That’s right, every country. There are 193 countries on this lovely little planet called Earth. As of this writing, Chris has visited 183 of them. That means he has only 10 left to go.
Since Chris was kicking my ass in the goal department, I decided I needed to step things up a notch. I can do better. I can do more. So I decided to set a goal that scares the piss out of me, but focus it around my passions and my purpose in life.
I came up with this simple (but scary as hell) goal:
How in the hell am I going to do it? I haven’t the slightest clue.
But that’s irrelevant. As a friend of mine once said, “how” is highly overrated.
On New Year’s of 2011 I didn’t have the foggiest idea of how people everywhere would see the world through my camera. And it didn’t matter. If I had known then how I was going to do it, it wouldn’t have been worth it to set it as a goal.
So here we are. It’s a little more than halfway through 2012, the year in which I will complete my first novel and feature film. I’ve already written the novel. Needs a little polishing and love before the public can see it, but it’s there. I’ve written the script for my feature. It’s a little short, at 32 pages (one page equals one minute on-screen…oh the magic of courier font…), but if I throw in 8 more pages, and hold a few long shots in there, I can make it a feature. Yes, I know I can do it. I’m pissing my pants as I write this, but I absolutely know I can do it and I will do it!
And then, in 2013, I’ll get to do it all over again! Wahoo! And in 2014, and ’15, and ’16, too!
Well, we’re going to have to cancel that snowmobiling trip up at the cabin, dear, because I’ve got some freaking novels and films to make! Get back to me in 5 years, when I’ll be able to resume normal life activity!
Until then…click on the link below to subscribe, and follow me on this crazy ride! It’s like Disneyland, but with no lines!