Your work needs a theme. So find your fear. This is hard. Find out what you’re afraid of then dramatize that. That is your theme. If you can’t think of one steal one until it’s yours now.
Fear is one thing. Identifying that fear is another. Clarify and solidify a few fears and then dramatize the fear into stories. It will come through. The truth always does. We pay millions for this. Hollywood sells dramatized fear. Guy gets girl is dramatized guy maybe not getting girl until he does when the story ends and now we’re just crunching popcorn seeds to go home.
But true fear written about, or thought about, or workshopped into your business about, or done truly in any way about, always hits. Because fear is what connects; not anxiety or anger; but fear; the sweet spot. Honesty about fear is what connects us. And leaders are the ones who can say it. That’s all.
If it’s not your fear, or your idea, use it until it is. Once you forget where you found it it’s yours. One day the thing has your smell and it’s yours; like the crush you steal from the world until it’s no longer Alice or Bill but “him” or “her.” We all viscerally feel our fears, but experts lay them out for us the way sugar, milk, and fire become crème de la crème.
Summer In The City
Sometimes failure is just failure. There is no label on the back of the box to tell you what you’re eating. This is the main difference between youth and adulthood and it can come at any time.
But we survive those moments and sometimes you wake up feeling like a mountain. It’s usually when you go to bed well which is more important than sleeping well. You don’t bring your phone to bed and you don’t watch any TV. Or maybe that’s just me. I shot up like a bolt. Then one second later my alarm went off. The Stoics focus on good days and claim, thereby, to have good years.
Try New Things
Getting up at 4:30 is harder than I thought. It’s because it means I have to be tired at 8:00. That’s what no one tells you–that to do the thing you want you have to be good at things no one can even think of which is why personal experiments are the only way to find anything ever.
Breakthroughs happen all the time. But I ignore them because I forget that my life is a movie. I’m trying to get better at noticing this. When a breakthrough happens, you have to remember you’re in a movie. When someone says ‘this isn’t a game’ they forgot a person wrote every movie they’ve ever seen from life lived. Even Alien is about someone’s own demon. How do I know this? Because no one has ever seen an alien.
But you’re the hero in the movie and the camera is on you and you’re being filmed and its focusing on your face and it’s the turning point. I need to remember that a writer wrote his movie to show how they got their movie made in Hollywood. They are reverse engineering the film to show you how they got produced. Its like shooting an arrow as far as you can then drawing a bullseye around it on the ground. That’s your life. If you aim, you’ll miss.
All movies and films and songs are about writers telling you, without telling you, how they got their movie made. The truth is what you’re looking at right now. It’s the same way you arrive—with a breakthrough that got seen. By you. Period.
Study what interest you and have a damned good time doing it. That was Ol’ Hem’s rule. If you’re reading this, and I hope you are, you write, you take ideas and act on them; or see movies or tell stories or hear them told or watch characters in your own life and cinema because you know that’s everything.
The rule is important because the flat part comes after satisfaction. The false belief that satisfaction is where we want to be is what most ails America and every other country that is living on the victories of its ancestors by yelling at other people.
My country is the arrow in the ground with the bulls-eye drawn around it. It’s unsatisfied longing, desire, that gets me closer. Not getting what I want. Maybe I’ll stop aiming so much.