Operation Achieve Anything: Day Three-Hundred-Sixty-Three, Dateline 12-29-2018

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Success is a journey, not a destination. The doing is often more important than the outcome.
— Arthur Ashe
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Good morning crickets. Welcome to day number three-hundred-sixty-three of Operation Achieve Anything. I can’t believe that there are only two days left to this year-long challenge, and I can’t wait for it to be over. Not that I’m not enjoying the process, because, even though I didn’t Achieve the anything that inspired me to purchase and try out the book, along with My Saturday Night Life, this was definitely the year that I’ve made the most positive progress during my time on Earth.

Sure, I’m still dealing with the issues in my head, my physical health isn’t all that great, and I’m only making around twenty-bucks a month to do what I love, and have two months to earn an income before I have to get back to being more active when it comes to looking for a side job, but now that I have a more grounded sense of purpose, that no one can take away, I’m now excited to wake up each day, just to see what’s going to happen next. I used to live like this by default, back when I was young and self-destructive.

Back then, the confidence came from literally not giving a shit about tomorrow because, the way I was living, there was never a guarantee that I would wake the next day, so I was just trying to fit in whatever I can. I think this sense in rekindling in me but not with the same self-destructive gusto. No, now I know I can go any day just because that’s the way that life work, whether or not I’m pushing the issue of when.

Over the past couple of weeks, I’ve developed a twenty-four-year-old plan and am now hell-bent of bringing it to fruition. This has me wanting to work as hard as I can to get as much done so that if I don’t make it to the end, there will be enough information for someone else to pick up the ball and run with it. All of the framework to my convoluted vision already exists, the pieces just need to be placed in the right order, and I just need to solve the puzzle of how it all fits together.

This is why I can have manic outbursts of excitement. I hear a lot about people always talking about the things that they want to do with the confidence that the only thing holding them back is the fact that they just need to put in the effort. If often can feel like they all think that achieving dreams is easy if they just tried. Meanwhile, aside from a few creative-types who I met while I was working in the film industry, most of the people I’ve met throughout my life focus on safety over chasing these ambitions.

I feel the fact that I’ve actively been doing everything within my own means to keep in the dream alive has led me to the point where it’s not delusional to think that I can pull this convoluted plan off, and I really excited when I see new ways to make progress without any outside help. Here’s the actual plan so that you can get a better understanding.

As I often point out, all of these challenges within The Wicker Breaker have been an active effort to improve my writing. If you want to see evidence as to whether or not this is working, read the first couple of Operation Achieve Anything post. Then read any of the most recent posts, and I’m sure you’ll still find typos and weird wording from my dyslexic heads ability to write whatever the fuck it wants at times, but you’ll also find a significant improvement. Do this with my first SNL review and the newest ones, and you’ll see the same results. It’s these leap in progress that gets me so excited.

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So, I’m going to continue to hone my skills and complete more daily challenges for the next four years through The Wicker Breaker whether or not I feel like I’m ready to move on to the next ten-year goal. By the time the four years are up, I should then be trained enough to really start the process of adapting all twenty-five-plus of the screenplays that I’ve already written into the entangled series of novels that I’ve had on my mind for almost a decade. This adaptation process will be my next ten-year challenge.

The idea here would be that this ten-year adaptation process will be my training ground to then start my final ten-year goal to then write as many novels from scratch that I can and then retire, or at least treat the writing side of my existence much more casual. This plan has me fourteen years out before I have to come up with new fictional work from scratch, can also be extremely exhilarating when it really begins to feel like things are starting to come together. Since I’ve been labeled bi-polar, I often confuse any sense of self-confidence as a manic episode. This is why I kind of force myself to be Eeyorish at times because people seem to think I’m crazy when I’m all hopped up on hope for the future.

I can’t tell you how many times I’ve been told that my dreams are too grandiose because it would be impossible to find a producer or distributor to take on something so big from somebody who’s so untested. Meanwhile, I have the materials to get it done, whether or not it will ever be seen by the world, I just need a tiny bit of help to remind me where I am in the process while helping my fine tune my efforts. This is the reason I’m so focused on figuring things out on my own.

I know I’m not ready, I know I need more time, but I also know that I will figure it out, with or without any help, and not in a cocky way. I just don’t have that many needs, so a finished product that I’m proud of is more important to me than anything. This allows me to think big without worrying about how other’s may receive my attempt to share my perspective and stories to those who do actually enjoy my work. I just need to continually remind myself that this is my ultimate goal.

Sometimes I can also get a bit overwhelmed when I worry about what the fuck would happen if I do manage to play just the right chords with my words to draw in more attention than I’m ready for and what I would do if I ended up successful in more traditional terms. What if I do make more money than I could ever burn through in one existence? How would I use it to help other artists like me? How I would handle the influx of voices from the past reaching out after a decade of dead air?

How I can maintain this life of solitude that I’m going to need to finish all of this work? When all that I want is a cabin the size of a good-sized studio apartment filled with comfy furniture and various places to write, enough money for food, some form of an assistant, and be able to pay my utility bills. This is probably my biggest fear because the extroverted side of me can be a monster when it has the option to hang out over knuckling down to work.

Then I worry about sounding like a douche, so full of himself with these modest ambitions when deep down there are more grandiose intentions floating around in my head. Meanwhile, the reality is that I’m just playing a game of “what if” to brace myself and try to get over my fear of success or at least the fear others may think that I think I’m special and deserve this win. This is why I often point to my track record in my effort to prove that I’ve earned this sense of pride.

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I’ll never forget my first day as a video game tester after just graduating film school for writing, I was told, “You need to talk to (this guy?), he’s a screenwriter as well.” This got me excited so I sat next to him one day and asked about his scripts and he just casually admitted to having never written anything but has a ton of ideas. I never wanted to be that guy, this is why I can tend to over advertise my efforts. I’m now realizing that I have enough evidence throughout this website that this just isn’t the case. Moving forward, I’m going to try to stop sounding so desperate while attempting to sell myself, since I’m the one with the product, and if anyone doesn’t want it, oh well, I’m sure there’s someone who does.

All of this sort of plays into the assignment from yesterday where I was supposed to get into the practice of celebrating the most minor of accomplishments in order to enjoy the journey, minus all of the blinders from being too destination obsess. The funny thing is, with my writing being so autobiographical, even when it comes to the stories that take place on Mars, I been collecting sentimental moments of this journey my entire life. My writing has always been my effort to show those who were close enough to influence a character or be part of the amalgamation of friends that make up the fictionalized versions of blended friends just how important they were during our time together.

This is why it kills me when I get accused of being a selfish jerk because I can’t express these feeling of appreciation through my spoken words in person. I was always too busy trying to cheer everyone else up, before going back to my apartment to stare at the ceiling instead of sleep replaying every word that was said worried to death that at least one person now hates me because of one misfired joke. This is why I stopped being the always giggling me five years ago when I left film. I just was done doing the same, unappreciated performance without getting enough back in return.

Of course, this is only my side of the story, and that I’m no angel in this situation either, I’m just sharing the hang up that I need to work through and not slinging guilt or pushing of the blame. How did these one-page posts end up getting so long? Oh well, it’s now that time to move on and introduce the second to last assignment of this challenge where I’m now just supposed to reflect on the success of getting this far in the Achieve Anything... book. Where I don’t usually like these, “just enjoy the day” assignments because they are far too open to interpretation, but with only two days left, today, I’m okay with this task.

Of course, I’ll have more to say on the subject when I check in with tomorrow’s update, but for now, it’s time for me to wrap this one up as usual by saying, good day and good luck to you and all of your projects.

Talk to you soon.

Sincerely,

The Wicker Breaker

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P.S. Below are links to my novel, which I plan to promote as part of Operation Achieve Anything, as well as a link to where you can buy the book that is providing the structure to this project in case you would like to purchase it in order to play along.

Matt Bunker

I started out with a goal of becoming a paid screenwriter. I had no interest in any other aspect of filmmaking. I received and scholarship to The Vancouver Film School's Writing for Film and Television program where I graduated in 2005. I fell in love with being on set during my first non-school produced short, . I loved being around all the creative people, seeing people having fun while working. The whole liking your job was a new world to me, so I decided to give it a shot. I volunteered for any project I could, doing what ever was needed. The set was my Film School this time. While working as a PA on a feature I was informed that the DP wanted the three tallest PAs to help out in the grip and electric department. That is when I found the department that felt like the best fit for me while I continued to write.