When you fill blank pages, you’re in the business of going from nothing to beingness. Think of making a baby. There is action, conception, gestation, reaction, adjustment to reaction, event. Bringing a thing into existence, whether it’s a baby or a script, has many stages and phases. You may want to ask, “what’s wrong with me?” But there’s nothing wrong with you – it’s the nature of bringing a thing into existence.
Decision making 101
If you have a decision to make, do you
Weigh the facts
Examine how you feel about it,
Determine what you want,
And then make the decision?
Fine, but then what?
Now you have to take an action. If you don’t take an action, you will go back and make the same decision over again.
Inner Movie Axiom: Always starting at the beginning keeps you at the beginning.
If you’re scared to move on
Scared is a feeling. Honor it. If you ignore it, you’ll move from decision to confusion. Since you already made a decision, take the action. Action is something to do. Then you have to react to the action, and so forth. If what scares you about moving on is that you’re not ready, then the action to take is – get ready.
Seek information, ask questions.
Look for potential solutions, then enact them. Take them one by one and try them out. The only mistake is to stay stuck. Move.
Think less, do more
Consolidate the time between thought and action. Just take action.
When the plot thickens
There will come a moment when you look and you see that the thing got bigger and deeper and broader and awesome. You will be overwhelmed. It’s too much, the story’s too big. The feelings are too real. Good, now you’re onto something. This is a moment at which you will want to stop and put it in the closet. Go ahead, put it away if you must, but it will send out vapours every time you walk past it. So – take it out. Give it a new way.
It’s taken on a life of it’s own. It’s starting to breathe whether you like it or not.
The 1000-page shuffle/how to divide and conquer
I have a client who came in the door overwrought, overwhelmed, overbudget. She had a pile of papers in a totebag. This is a sign. She read through some, and I noticed that she read, she’d turn one paper face down, and then the next she’d put behind the pile. She had no organization, no rhythm, no reason. We did something revolutionary. We numbered the pages.
Often when you have a thousand pages it’s because your script is written twelve different ways. Make decisions. This version or that one. No more writing; you’ve already got it. Go with what you have.
Stand behind it. Otherwise you get more and more material that isn’t quite right. Take a stand and make one strong statement.
©Marshall Dodgsons, 1971.