I have a challenge for you. One that doesn’t involve ice water (… although that sounds pretty freakin’ good right about now). No, I am challenging you because I think that you are smart enough, capable enough, and because I know that you come to sites like this one to become a more well-rounded artist and human being. (I am giving you A LOT of credit here. Cuz, you’re that great.)
You see, dear reader, I just started working on my first narrative short film. And I’m finding the whole process to be super challenging and surprisingly rewarding. And I want to share the joys and lessons! … That and, misery loves company. So, come play with me! Here’s why you should…
Expand Your Lens
Understanding the writing process gives you an appreciation for the brain/s behind the project. This is the most obvious one. Writing is HARD sometimes. And at times a writer might agonize over the wording of a sentence for hours. So, actors, you need to have respect for that when putting a character into those words. You will gain the ability to interpret text in a way that you may have never thought of before.
Random side note: if you want to see how much information you can glean about a character in three sentences or less, get on OKCupid. …Wow.
Artistic Wibbly Wobbly Bits
Get those oh-so-juicy creative juices flowing. There are no rules for this class assignment. It can be anything; fan fiction of your favorite Biography, a cookbook for pancake lovers, or a collection of haikus about that one time in middle school. (You know the one…) There is no “right way” to do this. I mean, look at me. I do it aaaaaaall kinds of wrong.
Tame that ADD Beast
It can help you learn how to focus. Forcing yourself to sit down on your butt to write something longer than 40 characters at a time can be a challenge in today’s ADD/quick content/shiny things world. (True story; halfway through this very paragraph I got distracted by a picture of this cat.) The struggle is real folks. But, we can begin to break this habit, slowly but surely.
Explore outside of your comfort zone. Yeah, I get it; your comfort zone is like a big fluffy Lazy-Boy recliner. It’s squishy and warm and has molded itself perfectly to the shape of your butt. But, you’ve been sitting in it too long. It’s starting to smell. And who knows? You might end up enjoying it. What’s that saying; “Life begins outside of your comfort zone”? … I have no joke there. It’s actually pretty accurate. And just like fellow writer, Hayley Derryberry, you could find that it adds a new and glorious path to the adventure that is your life.
Which leads me to the next point…
You Don’t Know How Awesome You Are
You might be good at it! This could be your new calling! And then all of the sudden; Bang, Zoom! You’re on a skyrocket to glitz and glamor with your famous scribblin’s on the mating patterns of sea mollusks. Or; you might suck. But, really… who gives a crap? Not once in this article did I say that you had to show your work to anyone. So, if the thought of sharing with the world your inner brain conversations makes you want to poop your pants out of fright, you don’t have to do it. That being said, I encourage you to do it anyway. Even if it’s just to one person. Like your mom. Moms love everything we do. Or is that just my Mom? … Ok, new plan. Everybody send your stuff to my Mom, and she’ll tell you how wonderful it is. Also, having other people read your work makes it a lot more real. Trust me.
And, as usual, dear reader; you don’t have to listen to anything I say. But, you made it through this entire article… so maybe you’re more interested than you realize? If that’s not enough of a reason, how do you do with peer pressure?
Do it. Come oooooon. Doooo it! No one will know. It’ll be our little secret.