So yes, it has indeed been a while.
In the months since my last entry, there’s been a lot of work on getting the pending wedding details together to throw the big event (now just a smidge over 2 weeks away) and I received an incredible job offer to work service and support for the rad-tac-u-lar gang at Wufoo. With the wedding alone being a large event to tackle, in tandem with getting into the flow of a new gig meant I had to put VO on the backburner for a little bit. While I have still been reading up, and practicing here and there, I’ve not been actively auditioning too, too much. But even then managed to successfully land a solid chunk of work.
Once things settle down after the wedding I plan to jump back into it full force, and will likely be all fueled up by the great experiences that await me at this weekends faffcon (the voiceover unconference). I’m incredibly excited to meet a lot of the voices and avatars I’ve been interacting with on Twitter for the past several months as well as bring my skills and experience in marketing, social media, and knack for navigating the internets to the table in order to help and teach all those who wish to learn.
I’m in particular looking forward to learning how other talents have thus far been utilizing their social profiles for their personal businesses and brands, and where they’ve found they’ve had successful as well as ponderous outcomes. All in all, it should be pretty stellar.
So stellar that it’s nearly 2 a.m. and last I knew I was planning to hit the road by 6.
I should possibly look into getting some rest. I’ll do that now… Atlanta awaits.
I’ve been rocking a pretty annoying bit of Cold™ brand sick this week. It started modestly enough with a bit of a throat tickle and a cough. And it quite possibly would have stayed as such, but I’m pretty sure I rage exacerbated the ever loving hell out of it by sleeping very little, and working at this computer for 12-15 hours a stretch these past few days on my first professional voice work related project.
Over 80 pages of material… didn’t seem like it’d be such a huge undertaking at the beginning. But then it swallowed my week whole… But I digress… on to playing catch up with #reverb10 prompts.
December 2 - Writing.
What do you do each day that doesn’t contribute to your writing — and can you eliminate it?
(Author: Leo Babauta)
Not quite sure how to answer this in a way that doesn’t go with my off the cuff snark response of “breathe.” So I’ll stick to that, as doing so is what enables me to exist, and my brain to have crazies. Notably in the form of that beloved, asshole inner critic lots carry around with them.
While I do enjoy writing, holy crap do I ever get in my own way. Particularly if I’m on a computer with internet access. If I’m not ADD afflicted and checking multiple other streams of information unrelated to the task at hand (but oh-so-interesting), I’m already engaged in editing the entire post while it’s still being written. Re-reading and reprocessing everything before this word, as the next stiltedly flows out. Maniacally fearful of misspelling (though most software is tracking it for me on the fly, whenever I see those red squiggles pop it’s like it triggers a mental ruler strike to my hands), improper context, and those times when I do just let go and happen to accidentally do something like double double up on a word by accident, or use the same core word several times in the same phrasing.
That last sentence? While even actively attempting to set it up as a “cute” example of my brain crazies, I saw the squigglies 5 times, and tabbed out of this WP page to use the “define: [type yo word here]” function in google search at least 3 times.
I get in my own way. As if it were my sole purpose for being.
Some days are certainly better than others, and being well rested absolutely helps. While I have installed a myriad of tools, apps, and plugins that are designed to help me focus on writing by being a gate between me and anything else on the internet, as well as converting my entire screen to a Doogie Howser, M.D. style word processor, it still has yet to take. I’m sure it’d get better over time through consistency. “Just showing up” as it were. But I don’t currently have writing within the top 5 list of my focused priorities currently. Though I probably should, as it is rather therapeutic, and clearly that’s something I could benefit from.
I have journaled on and off for almost 20 years. I usually fill up the first 10 – 15 pages, and then break the habit, and the rest of the book is blank. I have at least 15-20 comp books, fancy journals, and Five Star First Gear College Rule EZ Tear notebooks in this very condition in a storage bin.
My current fave, and the one I’m doing my best to be more actively on top of, is an awesome leather bound journal that Tara gave me as a gift last year, the back binding page inscribed with some of the sweetest and most loving words that I’ll spare you from the syrupiness of. (Just make a mental note that in my small, crazy world, she’s the bee’s knees.)
It was my intention this evening, after being at my iMac from 6 a.m. – 8:45 p.m. sweetening and bouncing out nearly 1,000 different mp3s of my own voice, to stay off the computer for the rest of the night and catch up on my prompts in this journal. As I was flipping through, I found something I wrote last year around this time, the catalyst of which I can’t recall. But it was clear indication that even disconnected from distraction, were words can flow more freely, and I don’t worry about the red squiggles, I have the inclination to get in my own way.
So I’m back at the computer, because I felt impulse to scan this short, self indulgent entry and share it. Because I found it kind of funny in a “where ever you go, there you are” kind of way.
It’s been an excellent year of progress since writing those words, fo’ sho. But same as it ever was, and hopefully will be… I’m a guy in progress. Always striving for the “best version” of me.
Here we go. #reverb10 kick off time.
December 1 One Word.
Encapsulate the year 2010 in one word. Explain why you’re choosing that word. Now, imagine it’s one year from today, what would you like the word to be that captures 2011 for you?
(Author: Gwen Bell)
Yes, I fit the somewhat contrived demographic of the 25 – 34 year old who has an affinity for subconsciously relating most facets of every day life to Fight Club. And yes, I am referring to the scene in which Jack, the by the book, clock punching, societal norm abiding protagonist enters his cave and communes with his “power animal.” This tightly wound character is being told to loosen up and let go… to release himself from mundane conformity. In one word. From a penguin. Anarchistic overtones of the third act aside, it’s a story that resonates.
At the start of this year I found myself supremely blessed to be in a position where I was brimming with joy about most every aspect of my life, but one. I was oh so, oh so terribly, incredibly, awfully, no good, very bad days in loathe with my job.
I knew something about this wasn’t right. I’d known for a few years, but I didn’t know what to do about it. Because I didn’t even dare think there was something that I could/should do about it.
I was to just “suck it up”, “keep my head down”, “shut up and be thankful that I even have a job in this economy“, punch in, check out mentally, punch out, commiserate with co-workers, collect a paycheck so I can continue to pay bills and buy things I don’t need, accept that I was spending a huge portion of my waking hours contributing to pursuits that left me feeling empty and completely drained, “living for the weekends”, rinse, and repeat.
It’s a common, readily accepted, and easily identifiable tale. But why?
Always having been the patience testing asker of “Why?”… something just felt really shady about this entire circuit of being. I had a strong hunch that there had to be another way. Hell, at this stage in the game I KNEW there had to be another way. (I touched upon this during a post for last years #best09)
The seeds were planted, I had the burning passion and desire… I just didn’t know how to apply it to my specific situation. I wasn’t quite sure how to make my escape from this particular den of unhappiness.
If any of you are calling bullshit on me and believe I was just self sabotaging and making excuses to abstain from breaking from the comfortably mundane… CLICK HERE.
I spent the last few months of last year, and the first half of this year, filling my head with case studies. Seeking examples and by proxy tutelage from those who’d thrown convention to the wind and opted to live on their own terms. ”Lifestyle design” was a topic that lit me up like a Christmas tree and I could talk at length about with most anyone, even brain storm and muse on areas of opportunity for others to enrich their own lives, but it was something I’d yet to truly enact for my own self.
My brain was so full of examples as to what worked well for others I rendered myself impotent looking for similar windows of opportunity, not yet accepting the reality that my opportunity would most likely be completely different.
Oddly enough… a significant catalyst that enabled me to get out from the quagmire of my own head occurred when hearing the breaking news of a disgruntled Jet Blue flight attendant by the name of Steven Slater. The guy who after being chewed out by a passenger on the flight, calmly approached the intercom system, told aforementioned passenger off, gave a kiss off to the remaining passengers, grabbed 2 beers from the galley, popped the side hatch and rode the inflatable emergency slide out into the unknown.
While perhaps a simple, and crude way of altering the parameters of one’s situation it was effective.
I too needed to be a man of action.
About a month later I gave my resignation from the coveted “stable job” I’d held for nearly 5 years, to not only unpause my dreams of becoming a professional actor and voice actor, but also to work night and day for a guy who I’m just not so sure about sometimes… Myself.
Was I scared? Hell yes. Do I still have the occasional internal freakout due to periods in time of not knowing where the next paying project or gig is going to come from while I train, train, train, and build a book of business? Oh.Good.God.YES.
But I can’t recall a time which I’ve ever felt more alive, more free, and not just living for the weekends, but living in profound excitement for each and every day.
Oh… and the word I’d like to capture 2011? Awesome… er.