Posts tagged writer
WORK | Mama, Writer, Producer etc.
On set with mama. 2019

On set with mama. 2019

Over the past year I have been on a journey on what it means ‘for me’ to be both my daughters primary care giver and to be active in my chosen career.

What I have found thus far:

I schedule around the time with my daughter.

Before a new work week begins, I sit down and see where the windows of time will be where she is on a visit to a grandparents, will be doing activities with her father or anyone else. Then I schedule in my work after that. (notwithstanding, previously arranged meetings, appointments or filming shoots.)

I honour the work and my daughter.

There are days I would rather just kick it around the house or goof off with a friend, but I realize if I don’t show up for both my daughter and my work I become resentful to whatever has distracted or is keeping me from either.

I grow at my own right pace.

As I grew into this motherhood thing, I realized that I valued my work and wanted to grow and mature professionally in a manner that was steady, healthy and challenging in all the right ways. My pace and someone else’s pace will be different and that’s okay.

What I wish others knew

I work really hard to be present.

I give you and my life 100% of me, which is naturally just a part of who I am as a person. It also means I can drain my reserves quickly if I am not managing myself properly and keeping margin in my daily life.

I love being there for both my daughter and my work.

There is nothing that makes me happier than having a day with a meaningful activity with my daughter and getting some work done amidst it all.

I need you to reach out to me too.

I take maintaining relationships seriously, and I have realized that although I am the driving force in many relationships, I need someone else to take the drivers seat off and on.

*A Note on ‘Being Busy’ & Celebrating the Exhaustion…

There is this unfortunate celebration of the woman who is balancing everything and continues to take on more and more. We like to enjoy saying ‘look at her, she does it all!’ We don’t take the time to look at how all of those things are affecting her personal and professional life in ways that are unseen. We just see the list of tasks and roles and celebrate , like it’s a ticket to success to be run into the ground with nothing but a few hours to sleep at night.

fyi: that’s not long lasting success. That’s a fast ticket to a burn out. I won’t be boarding that train ya’ll.

WORK | Everything is Progress
newbyamygrace.

As work and projects have shifted,

it became very clear that I needed new business cards.

Here is what blew me away about looking at past cards I have had for byamygrace until now:

Every year I become more and more who I am supposed to be.
Every year is a refinement and these little cards are a testament to the journey.

Looking at this business card I feel truly connected to what I am presenting more so than ever before.
That is me and it clearly states what I am about.

It is hard in the moment of the slog of ones own work and creative pursuits to see the story that is being woven together with every action, every day, season and year… but when you pan back and see the progression over years, you begin to see that you have been growing, changing and becoming.

It has led me to the realization that every little thing is progress and there is room for just a bit more growth in every small and simple thing we do.

*“Baby steps and short breaths. Anything is progress. You sustain my every moment.” - Steffany Gretzinger

WORK | Freelance Bit Writer - Eyes for the Job
bit.writer.byamygrace

This past Autumn I began learning and gaining experience as an extended script & bit writer for a television series ‘Eyes for the Job’.

Eyes For the Job is a ‘do it yourself’ television series of two hosts who tackle different projects in and around Halifax.

What I’ve been Learning

Integrated Described Video (IDV)

What is unique about this series is that it integrates from the ground up described video. This is done so that a viewer who couldn’t visualize the show clearly, can still fully apart take in the show and know as much as any fully sighted person what is going on, and how it looks without the typical ‘Described Video’ overtop.

This means I have been learning over the past few months how to write in a way that includes this information. What does the project look like, where are they, what does something feel like?

Having worked four years as an American Sign Language interpreter this type of writing style is a fun challenge and taps into a side of me I haven’t used in a while.

Bits

Currently I am working on bit writing. The transition segments that take about 30 - 60 seconds long that tackle a quick tip or project in-between the bigger projects. I am having a BLAST with these. I am verbose by nature, so this work is not only a challenge for me, but a practice I am learning to embrace whole heartedly and find a unique satisfaction in.

The Takeaway

This experience is giving me active feedback on my writing and an active way to grow in this industry that fits where I am in this season of my life. I am learning not only the craft of brevity, but what is required to get a series like this on air.

& in honour of that learned brevity, to sum up:
knowing that the work I am doing here is contributing to a bigger project that gives others more equal access, is a satisfaction that goes beyond the work itself.

WORK | Communication
communication.byamygrace

My Question:

How can we communicate authentically and respectfully?

Communication plays a huge role in most, if not all professions.

Professionally and personally, I take communication seriously. I am hard pressed to not take deep note of how body language and words are presented. Since focusing my work away from the interpreting field, and into writing, working amongst creatives, and the performance industries, I have noticed how the communication style various in huge ways.

This presents itself through email, one on one conversations, social events in a crowded room or even just a glance as we pass eachother in the street.

There is no one size fits all in the performance / artistic industries.

The biggest thing we can ever do for each other professionally and personally is to seek clarification when there is a shimmer of confusion or doubt on the intent of a communication, be it verbal or physical.

Especially as a woman, we are in a world today where miscommunication can be the complete break down of a professional / personal experience.

What I wonder at and am theorizing, is how good we are at accepting that someone was put off, hurt or misunderstood by our own intent? How they might have got it wrong, and we also might have communicated wrong?

We can’t get it right 100% of the time, we are human after all. What makes us think that we are above that?

I ask this question not because I seek to create positive and empowering experiences with those I communicate with and I know that I won’t get it 100% right all the time. There is no world in which I will, and I would hope and trust, that those around me would be capable and empowered enough to seek that clarification from me, challenge me and continue to pass me grace for when I didn’t have the words or ways in which they needed.

Personally and professionally, this is what I desire.

WORK | Blog Writer
blogwriter.byamygrace

I started writing a blog on blogspot in 2010 called 'intentionally Amy'.  

I posted on it weekly and through that routine I found a renewed passion for writing.  

My writing and my voice was something that my education in ASL/English Interpreting took from me (I don't say that lightly). As a very young twenty-something I knew my voice mattered but I struggled to find it amidst the rules, the circumstances and the professional boundaries that I was now confined in. 

I needed to find, at least, my written words again.  Somehow.

Blogging became that way for me to to find my words and inadvertently, connect with living a more 'intentional' lifestyle, something I craved.

As the years progressed, I learned that not only my words mattered but my voice did too.  

I made the scary realization that the profession I chose was one that overall, discouraged my young voice and where I often found myself in positions where the rights of others, including myself, were being not only ignored but pushed aside.  

(that being said, I do want to add that towards the end of my short interpreting career I was developing a great relationship with my then, current boss & a few very wonderful mentors whom I know would have continued supporting my growth in the profession.)

Looking back, I can recognize that in certain circumstances, even as an individual providing a service, I deserved to know that I had autonomy and a voice in the situations I was in, despite being just 'a conduit for communication'.

It has been having a blog space that has allowed me to find my voice in a quiet and yet public manner.  

It hasn't always and still won't always be as eloquent or as thought out as I would like, but blogs have a way of delivering the honest state of a person and I am empowered by that.  To read the honest states' of others and to have a moment to discover my own place in this world.

It's a privilege.  

It's a privilege to have had that tiny little blog which turned into this website format where I can explore my creative and performance projects in a public and yet collected manner. 

I continue to blog as a consistent way for me to conintue my output and growth.  Consistency is important even when we don't feel like it, even when it sucks.

I will always be maintaining a blog because it is a habit that continues my work, my creativity and also in honouring my own unique voice.

 

 

WORK | Mid-Year Review 2018
Amy.grace.june.18

In January I made this statement:

"Focusing on excellence in my work, my choices and my lifestyle ideals are what is forefront in my mind as I journey into this next year..."

How has this played out?

IN THE PROFESSIONAL

I have been in the process of levelling up in my work quality.  I have created a few pieces that surprised me and they are in various stages of development.  I have also had to learn what it means to say no.  To have to stand up for myself in a professional setting shook me up.  It reminded me of my values, of what I will and will not work towards.  It reminded me of why I do what I do and what type of writer that makes me.  In essence, excellence might look a bit like having a strong sense of self tied directly to my professional being.

IN THE PERSONAL

I have a better sense of where I want my energy to be poured out in my family, my friends and my community.  I have a better sense of what I can be giving and it has created some clarity over the past few months.  Attending our local church has allowed me to truly sink into creating deeper relationships with people who live near us.  It has been an anchor and given me space to inhale and exhale while connecting with family, friends and anyone else who crosses my path.

OVERALL

This half of the year hasn't been easy by any means, but it has developed in me a sense of strength and discernment in situations that are beyond me.  I have been reminded of Who made me, Why I am driven to create and What makes me unique.  Striving for excellence has never been about prerfection, but about truly understanding who I am, what I can fully bring to the table and how I can serve. 

 

 

 

WORK | Film & Television Writer
televisionseries.byamygrace

Learning the craft of writing for film & television is a journey.
I still am in the process of attending workshops, studying up, and surrounding myself with like minded people. 

Let's be honest.  

I am doing all of this while being the primary caregiver of a three year old.  It's not as if this journey is going to be completed in a season or two.  

What I am learning so much of right now, is that giving myself grace and space to learn, grow and be inspired is of the upmost importance.  

Grace to not have it all figured out, and the space to take as much time as I need to get there. 

What I have accomplished so far :

- Written and continuing to work on various drafts of the pilot and series pitch of a television series that I alone created.  I have done this with the previous and continual help of various women who are also excited by the concept. (That in itself is amazing!!!!) 

- Written a short film that accurately displays the type of female characters that I am known for writing.  That displays my love of womanhood, friendship and humour. 

 

I think at this point, to get this far has been a considerable feat and I shouldn't downplay it no matter how I may feel when I look around at the various women slaying their hustle.

 I too, have been doing amazing things.

Here is to the continuation and development of much more!

 

 

WORK | Theatre Writer
themomshow.byamygrace

I am going to level with you.

I am not out to be the next hit Canadian performance.

I think, that itself as the goal, distracts from the whole point of it. 

The pressures we allow to be put on ourselves internally and externally are insurmountable.  They sit on us and tell us how unworthy we are and how our attempts are always going to pale in comparison to anothers.

Here it is:

I want to be so focused on honing my craft, creating true and resonating pieces of work that the distractions fall away.  That I surround myself with what I need to be empowered enough to press in and keep on carving away at something I truly believe in.

I am pursuing characters whom I truly love and adore.  I am their advocate and their biggest champion.  I want to see them breathe in the mediums I have chosen for them and I remain hard at work bringing them into the place they need to be.

That is what it's about.  Not the recognition, not the networking, the support or the lack thereof.  It's about the voices that have been given life through the work and whom made it past the cutting room floor into a place of story. 
 

LIFESTYLE | 29
29.byamygrace

No one tells you that the older you get the more you love yourself and the better life can be. Sure, there are always battles, trials and heavy situations to journey... but just having the opportunity to wake up and inhale a new day and get at life is an incredible honour. To live and breathe in fresh air is the biggest gift. 

If anything, I am journeying this last year in my twenties with a deeper sense of awareness of how much I have changed and become since turning 20. Amy then in many ways is foreign to me, and yet, the Amy now still has that core within her. I am still addicted to stories, musicals, raw emotional music and driving solo with the windows down and the volume turned on the loudest notch. I still dance and organize every inch of my life. 


Yet. 


I have shifted and learned more about what it means to be Amy. All of her. As she is. Without approval, affection, adoration. 


I have learned what it’s like to walk alone and yet not feel alone. I have learned to breathe and I have learned what my middle name really and truly means.  

Here’s to this last year of my twenties and whatever else they have left for me. 

WORK | She Is
IMG_2778.JPG

This Sunday I presented a short piece that I was commissioned to write for a Sunday morning service.

Attending Bedford Baptist Church has been a nice shift for our little family.  To attend a church in our own community is new for us and we love how connected it is making us feel. 

'She Is', in my mind, an attempt to capture the life stages of women and present them with varying degrees of perspective.  It's easy to look at youth, middle aged and senior and leave it at that. But what happens when we truly look at a woman in each stage at all angles?

Depth.

In this little piece I attempted at showing the varying depths of a woman.  I was blessed to have  five women stand as representation while leaving an empty chair representing the indigenous women who have been missing figuratively and literally from our societal conversation. 

Even after presenting this, it is not lost on me that I could only present a limited amount of angles on women and there were and still are so many more I could have touched on.  

This piece has me meditating on that depth that is seen and unseen.  We are programmed to see something in others because we personally decide that is what we are seeing based on our own life experiences.  But there is always more.  More we don't know, can't know and won't know unless we get closer and ask each other, spark conversation and dare to get more intimate with one another.  Relationship with eachother, especially as women is, I believe, the main way we find solidarity and peace within ourselves.

bedford.baptist.
WORK | Week Planning
week.planning.byamygrace

It's no secret that I carry my Bullet Journal close to get me through my days and ADORE sitting down to plan a fresh week.  But the truth is, I do it for the sanity.  For the ability to juggle my personal and professional life. 

Planning for a new week takes me from mid Friday to Sunday night.  If I am blessed to have an open stretch of time then it might only take me one day, but non the less, to have sanity I carve out the time despite how busy a weekend may be to plan the new week to come. 

How?

1. Schedule the dailys.

Chores, exercise, and hygiene/beauty regimen all get scheduled in without question.  A clean home, ability to move my body and take care of my physical/emotional self are high values for me.  I make them a priority.  

2. Ink in the meetings/events/appointments.

Being that I am the main care giver for my almost three year old and a writer for theatre, film & television, any event, work meeting, appointment and child care has to be planned ahead and chosen wisely.  I know my point of exausthion and do my best to make sure that I rarely hit it so that I can always be giving my daughter, colleagues friends and family the best and healthiest version of myself.  This also means that every week looks different from the next.  Scheduling can feel like a game of chess at times.

3. Empty inboxes & links saved.

I am a huge fan of starting the week with a fresh inbox, knowing that I have dealt with the weeks correspondence and along with that, any links that I have saved to be read, watched or looked into are carefully minimized and put in folders such as "Professional Development".

4. Update budget, groceries, meal plan, etc.

Being wise with our finances, and eating healthy whole foods are values of our little family.  This means we have to make a weekly effort to prepare for the week to come.  It is all to easy to buy cheap processed food and buy needlessly.  Taking the time to review our spending and financial goals once a week along with what recipes we want to make has helped us hugely in maintaining our financial and physical wellness. 

5. Pre set rooms, technology and laundry for Monday.

Nothing says it's a new week better than fresh sheets on the bed, laundry washed and folded and phones and laptops charged and cleaned.  (I have a habit of working while eating a snack or dinner and I ALWAYS end up with a dirty screen and keyboard by weeks end)

This may seem excessive to some, but for my personality, whom thrives on maintaining my inner and outer expectations, this routine not only ensures that I maintain my own contentment but also my follow through with that and those I commit to.  

Week Planning is the foundation of my personal and professional life.

WORK | Writers Room
writers.room.byamygrace

This room has been a work in progress.  As a family, we call it "The Creative Room".  Personally, I call it "My writers room".  This is where I write, muse and make it all happen.

DESK

This desk was a labour of love for me.  I saved for two years to be able to afford it.  I saw it on Pinterest one day and promised myself that I would find a way to buy it.  I adore it's simplicity and it's ability to store my materials.

TROLLY

Another Pinterest find, I noticed that many bloggers were using this IKEA trolly for their art supplies.  IKEA was not yet in Halifax, Nova Scotia at the time so I again, had to set aside the money for shipping (which can be absolutely ridiculous considering the cost or sale of an item) Currently it holds all of Z's creative supplies I am okay with her having anytime access to. (markers etc are stored on shelf)

CHAIR

From IKEA.  My family blessed me recently this year with the perfect chair support.  Being that I have a unique desk, chairs have been hard to match with it.  This chair is perfect for my back, trendy, comfortable and has the adjustable height I need.

POSTERS

From the two shows I have written and produced.  Hanging them above my work space is a reminder that I have written impactful work, that I am capable of excelling and improving with each project and that it is worth the work it takes.  I am incredibly proud of what I have accomplished and I think we should all aim to encourage one another in the dreams and visions we aspire to.  

ACCESSORIES

Twinkle lights, photos of my best friends, a hidden 'Peter Rabbit 'A'' from my mom, a vintage key, a soft mat for my feet, a compass for Grace, seasonal scented candle  are all elements that create an atmosphere for me that boost me, motivate me and embolden me,.  

 

flatly.amygrace
UPDATE | Writer & Mother Simultaneously
mother.writer.byamygrace

This is important.  It's so easy to breeze past these thoughts and real life living because it's not as glitzy as the 'on the go', sexy snaps of #writerlife or #familylife.  It's the in-between.  The moments that are missed that give the fuller picture. 

 

Posted on Instagram:

"Here's the real...
.
Nothing worth it comes easy & the juggle is real. It's a toddler table next to the work desk. It's the episode planning on a wall next to a box of play-dough. It's the full time mothering and running out to a meeting with the best partner in crime. It's the struggling with the fear & the pushing and pulling apart of the work. 
I am a full time mother. 
I am a full time writer. 
My brain is going in a million ways daily and I know that I was made for this. 
But the real is that I have had to let go of some wonderful things. I dance less, I miss out on events, I let people down just by trying to be both mother and writer. 
I wouldn't trade it. The exhausting days with a teething toddler & the evenings with glittering lights around my desk begging me to go meet my dreams. Walking to the park in the morning to be spirited and free and then driving out to a meeting to be badass and a bit edgy. 
Thankful for the spirits who come along side my wild and independence and give me the permission to explore, work hard and raise a wild soul. 
This is my real insane happy life."

 

And I am thankful.  

For the journey.
For the support around me.
For the inspirations.
For the experiences.
For the colleagues.

Staying feet planted on the ground and spirit reaching for the depths.  

UPDATE - Trophy at Nocturne
An alley way of stories of change to discover....

An alley way of stories of change to discover....

I was thrilled to be connected with Sarah Conn who is the co-creator and producer along with co-creator Allison O'Conner of 'Trophy'.

A beautiful installation pop up project that collaborates with others in the community to share stories of change.

Being a writer/performer, I jumped at the chance to experience this unique installation as a 'storyteller'.  I asked a few close friends which of my life changing moments would translate well in a four minute telling and then I joined ranks with Sarah and Allison and the others for Nocturne Halifax 2017.  

Sharing my story of change over and over again to different people in a small intimate setting, I found that I gained a deeper awareness of how we adjust our stories along with their intentions to match our audience.  This is a simple concept for many writers and performers but so often forgotten the fray of our making and formulating of the work.

I found I also realized how blessed I was to have had that specific experience that I so often take for granted.  I was changed in that moment again and again, simply by the retelling.  Which is why storytellers do what they do, isn't it?  We want to relive that experience for ourselves, for others and for those that deeply need to hear it.

Trophy gave me, as a storyteller, a deeper connection with my audience and I am so thankful for Sarah and Allison who have been touring this piece.  It truly is a moving experience for both teller and listener. 

The tent where I shared my story of a 'Cuban Taxi driver who changed my life with three words:  'I am Happy'.  

The tent where I shared my story of a 'Cuban Taxi driver who changed my life with three words:  'I am Happy'.  

UPDATE | Character Development
Character development.byamygrace.JPG

Character Development is what motivates me in my writing, reading and watching of film and television.

 

I am sure it has driven my close people a bit nuts to listen to me poke holes in plots as I watch/read them, and even more so when I see a character that doesn't hold up.

People are complex and layered.  Showing that through the written and performance mediums is easier said then done and I will be the first to say that the art form of character development is a craft I am still learning.

Over the past few months I have been working alongside Kirstin Howell to develop strong female characters for a television series.  I am consistently challenged by her edits to develop these women to be multi-dimentional.  

As a society we like stereotypes because they are easier to understand and quick to put together.  Thats the problem, people are not easy to understand and there are layers upon layers of life that create a person to be who they are and to do the things they do.  No one is just one stereotype.  We may be born to have certain personality traits and certain ways of doing life, but that doesn't mean we can't divert from that.  In fact, more often than not, we do.  

Through this process I am learning to challenge what I think of my characters and admit that as a writer I don't know everything that informs their decision yet and I may never will.  Writers are not God, they are conduits for a story that the characters speak from.  I think anyone who has written for the integrity of the story realizes that they are there to serve the characters and their story.  
 


The writer serves the characters, the characters don't serve the writer. 

 

The fun part of my work is that this all applies to real life.  I can only assume that I will never know the whole of a person, but I can be present with them and with myself.  I can allow myself to believe that we are more complex than an 'assumption'.  Life isn't as simple as a statement or a stereotype.  Life goes deep and we'd better be ready to get dirty in the process.  

Strong Characters I Adore:
 


Jane Eyre - Jane Eyre by Charlotte Brontë
Christina Yang - Greys Anatomy by Shonda Rhymes
Aibileen Clark - The Help by Kathryn Stockett
Phillip Jennings - The Americans by Joe Weisberg
Sansa Stark - Game of Thrones by George R.R. Martin

 

 

SPOTLIGHT | Gillian Hannah Berry
gillian.hannah.berry.spotlight.byamygrace

Gillian has been a powerful presence in my life.  Her integrity, her joy, her desire to go deep and her insatiable eye for beauty in nature and in fashion has a way of captivating anyone who knows her.  

How would you describe yourself?

I would describe myself as a designer, a grower, a writer, a beauty seeker, and an adventurer.

What role does creativity play in your life? 

Creativity gives me freedom and joy. It’s what brings me life. It gives a voice, a visual and a vessel to the things I feel led to communicate and share with others.  I like to capture and create beauty and share it with others so that they might be inspired and reflexively be given the permission to pursue what is in their own hearts.

What are you currently working on?

I have come to realize I have a trio of creative outlets that are all supporting of one another to uphold my creative fulfillment.  Fashion is a way for my creativity to express itself visually and sculpturally. I am currently working on a collection of women’s outerwear –coats specifically. Some are sculptural, others have clean lines. It’s been a lot of fun but a huge challenge as it’s the first time I am hoping to have the collection made into multiples to sell in the future.  Fashion can be a very intimate art form as you are making something for someone to literally put on themselves to embody the art you have created.  I want women to feel confident and inspired when they wear my designs.

I grow vegetable gardens, all through the year in the cold climate of Nova Scotia.  Gardening has been my solace in times of creative blockage and self-doubt.  Gardening gives me a peace that I do not get from my other work.  In some ways it is a spiritual practice that teaches me to be joyful and thankful for the abundance in my life, and what I was able to co create with the earth!  Last year I was harvesting cold tolerant lettuce varieties all winter long. These were grown underneath mini hoop tunnels that we built over my garden beds. 

And finally in the last 3 years I have gotten into writing a lot. I write poetry, and I am looking to find an outlet to share it with others very soon.  Writing is a way that I can communicate my ideas and feelings very directly and uninterrupted. It gives a voice to my creativity, and it also keeps mesane.  With some of my other creative outlets that involve a much longer process to completion, there is not an immediate relief and encouragement that comes from the output of creative energy. For me, when it comes to writing, there is this immediate relief and satisfaction. I’ve come to realize I need this trio in order to feel positive and like there is a healthy flow and balance to my creative expression. 

What was the last book/movie/podcast ect that left an impression on you?

The gifts of imperfections by Brene brown was the last book that left an impression on me.  She researches shame and vulnerability, and how overcoming shame and living a life where we allow ourselves to live fully present and be vulnerable in relationships with others is what guides us toward living a more wholehearted life.  What resonated with me most was how cultivating a sense of gratitude for the good things in our lives really positively shapes both our self-image and our relationships with others.  Brene brown really outlined to me areas I could improve in to live a more healthy and positive creative life that is well balanced. She talks about cultivating authenticity, self-compassion, resilience, gratitude, faith, creativity, play, rest, meaningful work, and laughter. She talks about how cultivating these key positive traits and practices in our lives, help us to live in a way that engages with others from a place of worthiness.  

What advice would you give to other creatively driven people? 

Advice I would give to other creatively driven people would be that I’d like to tell them not to compare themselves, and their accomplishments to others but I know they still will, because in today’s world it’s difficult not to. However, it is just not a fair thing to put yourself through. It’s so easy to stack everybody else’s accomplishments and lives so high and measure yourself as falling so far behind. It is not an accurate representation of the truth. Everybody feels the same way at some point in terms of not feeling good about where they are at. Everybody has different opportunity’s and advantages or disadvantages that make it easier or harder to end up where they are, so it’s never fair to measure your life next to someone else’s when all the variables are completely different. Instead try to remind yourself of the progress you have made, even if your progress is slow, because sometimes slow is the only manageable pace for the season you are in. seasons of progress and productivity come and go. The kinder and more gracious you are with yourself, the more confident you will be in what you have to offer the world creatively. I have found that seasons of productivity will come a lot easier when you are loving and respecting your inner artist in all its goodness as well as shortcomings. Another piece of advice would be If you feel stuck in some way, sometimes finding another creative outlet can support and jumpstart the area you felt stuck in. 

 

UPDATE | The Draft Process
GOld.JPG

Being in the throws of writing drafts of work can be dull, dreary and completely draining. 

Truthfully, I don't have time for dull, dreary or draining anymore so I knew that somehow I had to find some gold in the draft making process.  

 

Here is the Gold I have found thus far:

A collaborator who wants to come alongside the work, share in the creative process and challenge the work to become what it needs to be.

I should have realized this years ago, but it is always a tad scary to share an idea / concept you are beginning to work on for fear the sparkle will be shot down.  Any creative person knows that an inspiration can be completely dissamated within it's infancy purely out of lack of protection from the wrong influences.  The right influence however, can truly bloom the work and become a collaborative process that drives you and the work forward.

An absolute planned and allotted 'I-mean-buisness-and-this-is-happening-now' session for writing/editing.  

I often find, that logistical edits are best made in the morning with coffee, creative edits/changes/nueances are made best in the evening with candle and wine, while scrolling through edits and notes are best made whenever the time presents itself and however you are wherever you are.

Setting the tone and wooing myself to the work.  

Lighting a candle, pouring a beverage, playing music that fits the tone of the work, dressing to mean business, tidying the work space...all of it, brings an air of mystery into the process.  A 'who knows what will happen here, but it is going to be epic' atmosphere.

When I step away, step away.  

Truly enjoy the break of thinking when the work is not in front of me.  Do other things amidst it all and allow the time of meeting the work to be like meeting with a lover after a long day. 

UPDATE | Script / Screen Writing
writer.byamygrace

Over the past two months I have been working on two scripts.  

One is a pilot episode and the other is forming into a possible stage piece.  Much of the beginning stages of writing, for me, is sitting with it.  It sounds a bit lazy but in truth,

I need a lot of sitting time.  

I close my door, listen to mood music, create vision boards for the projects and exist with it.  I surround myself with as much inspiration as I can.

This is what I have been doing.

___

This week I attended a screen writing class to prep for an application for a short film.  In truth, I am not sure if I have anything for that particular project, but placing myself in the atmosphere of other creaters is what I need to be doing more.

So I am.

Heres the thing.

I write.

I tell myself this everyday because I forget.
Other people help me forget by not treating me like a writer.  Other times, I help myself forget by not treating myself as a writer.
But I am.  

So that is that.  

I write.

I write here.

I write plays.

I write screenplays.

I write short quotations on Instagram.

I write and I write.

SPOTLIGHT | Aren Morris
spotlight.arenmorris.byamygrace

1.How would you describe yourself? 

In progress…. Constantly evolving creatively, professionally, as a parent, wife, woman and human being. 

2.What role does creativity play in your life? 

Creativity is a craving of honesty, truth. Being creative is when I feel closest to God and my true self. 

3.What are you currently working on? 

I am always writing poetry… interesting words or ideas on slips of paper, lines of a poem in whatever journal I am carrying around, complete poems in a folder on my iPad. 

As a drama teacher, I often have some sort of production idea brewing… currently a piece using black and white makeup, to give the look of an old black and white film, as well as one on the history of Fultz House, a historic manor located in the town I teach in. 

More specifically, I am writing my first novel. 

4.What was the last book/movie/podcast etc. that left an impression on you? 

I recently finished reading “Love Warrior” by Glennon Melton Doyle. Wow! It is the most loving and compassionate feminist manifesto I’ve ever experienced. It confirmed many things I knew already and encouraged me to love myself even more profoundly. 

5.What advice would you give to other creatively driven people? 

Creativity takes time. You have to schedule it in. When I leave it to chance, the ideas get frustrated with me and they take off, but if I take the time to write them down as they make themselves known, I can do more, write more, create more.  
Also, it’s important to book time in your schedule. For me, predominantly creative through writing, I am happiest when I have a regular time in my routine to read, write, walk, meditate and so on. I live a chaotic and loud life as a drama teacher and mom to two boys, so scheduled “me” time, reflective, quiet time and time to sit my ass in a chair and write is not just crucial, but where I find balance and peace.

 

UPDATE | Am Writing
power stance.byamygrace

I am coming into the realization that in order for me to focus on writing strong narratives and empowering scripts, means I have to humble the voice inside my own head, dream big and enjoy the journey. 

CONFESSIONAL
I am never not talking to myself.  I have an unending voice that rarely, if ever, quiets.  I chalk it up to being trained in simultaneous and consecutive interpreting.  Interpreters are taught to process all aspects of information, visual and audible in the moment it is being made, and also, retain that information for it's relevancy later within the same communication time frame.  

THIS MEANS
I am highly aware of my own and others emotions, perspective, and insights.  I am constantly struggling to let go of what I understood of others, myself and the world around me.  I am quick to be weighed down by myself and others and I find being in settings where I am unable to take a break from people extremely exhausting on my body, mind and soul.  

AS A WRITER
Embracing these sides of myself is what is going to push me forward into this next stage of my work.  I need to protect my work hours.  To follow my instinct on what will bring me focus.  To let go of trying to be all things to all people.  To have space enough to let my own personality fall to the floor as I write.  To let the fears of what others think of my work / life choices be just background noise to my main thinking process.

AT THE END OF THE DAY
This is my life.  My legacy.  My Joy.  Writing is my calling and if all I ever do is write scripts and have only a small audience for my work, than I believe I will have not only filled the calling, but will have lived a life that overflowed with joy for me and those who live with me.