Good Morning Crickets!!! It’s been a while so I figured I’d check in to reassure you that I have not given up on this site or any of the challenges that I put on hold in order to take a mental health break. If you’re new to this site, I’ve been working on multiple projects daily for the past six years, collectively taking a little over a month off in all of that time. I did this to find my non-screenwriting writer’s voice. I spent over twenty years developing my storytelling style through my scripts, this blog was/is meant for me to hone my technical skills to adapt all my scripts into novels.
Around Thanksgiving, I feel like I found that non-screenwriting writer’s voice to where I feel ten times more confident in the quality of my work. Granted, I still need more fine tuning but, I finally feel like I’m to the point where successful or not, I know what I want to do with the rest of my life, and time is the only cost. I’ve learned how to live on next to nothing with nearly zero real world/human interaction, just enough to keep me from fully getting lost in my own head/fictional stories, like the way I did on Twitter around New Year’s during my astronaut experiment.
I still need to explain how that all went down, but it was my final hurrah of an attempt at becoming an overnight success by Tweeting an entire novel, hosting a text-based Twitter podcast, and telling a fifteen-day long joke that made me look like a maniac. I got to live my dreams for two weeks, but I was alone in a windowless room to do so. Though fun, it was far from healthy.
I was able to get to this point by cutting everyone out of my life to focus on my writing. Though this makes me feel like a schmuck, considering that I don’t think my writing is all that good, but I do think it’s worth it since I opted to become a writer over striving to have any kids. I feel like this has paid off, considering how my friends who are now parents are now social shut-ins themselves making me no longer see a big difference.
The astronaut thing was pretty much fifteen days of forced meditation, where I was so hyper-focused on pretending that I was in space, that I did lose touch with reality, but at the same time, I felt like I was in total control since I was doing it publicly. In the past, I would go to the same depths for my story development, but since I kept my techniques to myself, it made me feel completely nuts. For some reason, when an actor goes that deep in researching a role they are brilliant. When a writer does it, they are seen as delusional nuts, at least that how I used to see it.
Sharing my quirky process publicly, made me feel more like a performer than a lunatic, the way I used to feel when I kept it all to myself. This realization made me start to feel confident in my writing even more, again, still aware that I’m sloppy from being dyslexic and self-taught. I’m sure that my first couple of scripts looked like they were written by someone who was illiterate since the circumstances weren’t all that far off.
Prior to becoming a fictional astronaut, I was a literal shut-in for four years. Toward the end of the experiment, I did go a little nuts, but needed to so that I could break free from the character before I got stuck and/or locked up. Coming out of the character led me to realize that I’ve been doing nothing but playing characters throughout my entire life. This led me to want to focus more on being myself.
This has led me to feel a bit identity-less, but with a new confident voice, well confident for the most part, from time to time I slip up. This led January to be a blast, probably the best month of my entire life spent without any friends. The second half of the month actually did involve many friends as I tried to rebuild some of the bridges that I burnt in my effort to escape Seattle which was a really fun secondary hometown where I lived for twenty years. It was here where I discovered my love for writing.
By February, everything went back to normal. The novelty of me being back seemed to grow stale rather quickly. Keep in mind, my main interactions were through Facebook where, while I was gone, everyone grew to be very stuffy and political. Even when I attempted to Bonsai Tree trim out all of the political posting friends from my life, the silly ones, including me, would go on diatribes from time to time, bringing back the stress that led me to check out of the platform in the first place.
Meanwhile, over on Twitter, I was allowed to joke all I wanted. The problem was, no one was listening because I’m sure everyone muted me during Astronaut January because I was being very obnoxious to those who think each social media platform has concrete rules that need to be followed. I also had the same Facebook problem where, minus being rewarded for my jokes, I would try to mix things up by getting political, since that all that everyone else seems to want to talk about, as if my uninfluential/broke ass bitching will change anything.
I started to get bummed out about a week into February. Not too bad, just a bit disappointed in how my overwhelming optimism felt like it was plotting its escape. It didn’t help that my stash of pot was running out, so I was struggling with regulating my sleep. I had enough flower to last until payday or at least be me close, but my vape pen had run dry. I didn’t think this was a big deal because the flower was getting me to sleep.
At the same time, I was confused because I was getting depressed in ways that typically only affect me when I’m coping with sleep issues. By the time the flower ran dry, I was on the verge of becoming an emo mess. Thankfully payday arrived on Friday, and I refilled both my flower and vape juice supply. Within hours, I was in a better mood.
It’s funny how people say that this is a sign that I’m addicted. Meanwhile, these people don’t seem to have a problem with the fact that every anti-depressant I’ve ever taken has made me feel suicidal. Having the vape juice refills, I realized that when I wake randomly in the middle of the night, I’ll take a hit or two from the pen and fall right back to sleep instead of tossing and turning for hours, too lazy to stand or position myself in the right way to smoke the flower. Plus there’s just too much mental work in smoking with fire which causes me to wake up.
With my new stash of pot, I instantly went back to being my playful self and having taken a few weeks off from feeling authentically fun, I hit Twitter hard with my jokes. Keep in mind, at this time, I still saw Twitter as me just screaming into the void, getting a like here or there from time to time. In the past, this would keep me posting random/dumb/playful insights and dad jokes, which seems to be the trend amongst the non-political folks that I follow.
Well, at least when you’re a man. The women on the platform seem to be up for much less structure and much more random fun, again, the ones down to joke, who aren’t too tied to a cause. Not that causes are bad, I just want to create a play space where I can escape all the newsworthy nonsense of this planet that we call Earth. Friday I said fuck it, and just committed to telling jokes as I got super high for the first time in a couple of weeks.
It started out as my usual brand of goofing off until, randomly, someone named Random Randomness put me on my very first Follow Friday list. There were thirteen people on this list, who all responded with thank yous all at once. Then people would like the thank yous and respond with their own jokes. In about five minutes, I had about two hundred notifications blowing up my phone.
I didn’t get that big of a response when Richard Kelly retweeted that he was intrigued by my Southland Tales challenge. Back then, I saw a huge boost in the traffic to my blog but, I wasn’t active on Twitter, so my notification tab stayed silent except for a couple of likes. The burst of attention disbursed after that initial five minutes but during that window of time, I met a few friends who’ve turned Twitter into a complete blast, now that it’s much more interactive with people actually liking my post, well, at least the ones I make in other’s comment section.
I’m finding that, like in real life, I was always a bigger fan of sitting next to the class clown to humor them while they wait to address their audience, and never really cared about an audience of my own. So I’m finding it much more fun to add to other’s jokes over desperately trying to capture the spotlight with my own random posts. Between the weed and this new Twitter finding, I’m now a happy Wicker Breaker.
It was just Thursday that I was contemplating giving up on social media altogether until I cleaned up this website. I spent over forty hours in only three days, placing ads and fixing the layout to all seven hundred and thirty of my SNL reviews. I still need to add thousands of Amazon links and resend everything through my Grammarly spellchecking tool so that I can stop stressing over the fact that, as it is, this entire site as a first draft since it started out as a training tool, and meant only for close friends.
Minus any real-world friends from my bridge burning flee, I’ve lost my mental image of who my audience is. This is why I decided to shift my focus to behind the scenes work until I could see someone about my mental health. I have a doctor’s appointment for March 6th, I’m sure this will lead to more appointments until I can actually talk to a shrink, so I’ve got to keep busy during the downtime.
This new Twitter attention will help because I have a ton of tedious work to get through and like to take many mini breaks and joking on Twitter seems more creatively beneficial than taking time off to play a game of solitaire. I have a few new friends on there who have similar senses of humor whose Tweets feel like a challenge for me to find images to make them laugh. I’m sure it’s obnoxious to others, but the people who I’m actually interacting with respond as if they are having fun, so screw those who think there are strict rules.
Sorry if I’m repeating myself to any return visitors, but since I’m not posting on the regular, I need to remind myself what I’m up to and where I left off until I get back to posting daily again. As I continue the site cleaning process, I’m growing more and more confident in my work and can’t wait for all of my content from the past to be corrected so that I can move on to new stuff without looking back at all.
Who knows? Maybe now that I’m feeling chatty again, I may check in more often with my updates, but either way, if you’re a fan, just be aware that I’m still making a ton of progress both professionally and in my personal life. With that, it’s time to get back to the mundane marketing work. Until next time, good days and good luck to you and all of your projects.
Talk to you soon.
The Wicker Breaker