2013 kind of just disappeared. It is ironic that my last blog post was the last day I had off – November 24, 2013. Today is the only other day besides Christmas, Boxing and New Years Day that I have had off since then. That’s what happens when you work every day including 28 days in a row – time just disappears. In one way, it was nice. In another way, it was quite exhausting.
2013 was the beginning of a new phase in my life that I have no idea where or how it is going to end. In many respects, this journey is much like a good film – a big decision followed by a trip where you have no idea what is around the next corner, accompanied by ups and downs, crisis, moments of despair and triumph and finally, a revelation and a happy ending – or not.
Although I can point to some very monumental things that happened in 2013 (getting my braces off – finally!, having another round of gum surgery, the floods in Calgary, stress shakeup at work), the decision to stop screenwriting and go back to school to get a certificate in technical writing was the biggest one. As I have stated in a previous post, you can only stand bashing your head against a brick wall and getting kicked in the head so much before it starts to wear on you. That was one reason for my decision, but it wasn’t the biggest one.
As you get older, you worry more and more about the future and what it may or may not hold. As a result, you get a little antsy at your ‘job job’ and realize that nothing is secure anymore. That’s the feeling that befell me and led me to take action to secure my future because the screenwriting ship hasn’t come in for me. In fact it may be stuck on a sandbar just off the coast.
I’m a writer. I always have been and I always will be. I will never be a journalist because I’m too opinionated and will never be able to be truly objective about anything. Trying my hand at novel writing is just as big a shot in the dark as screenwriting. So, after doing some research on what kind of career I could use my writing skills while providing for my future in a relatively steadily growing field, I chose business and technical writing. I have a pretty good grasp of technical things and appreciate the appearance of good design and layout, so that is what I chose.
It’s stressful trying to work full time and going to school part time, as I discovered when I was completing my first course. 2014 is going to verrrrry interesting to see how I can fit 6 more courses into the year while juggling a job and trying to manoeuver time off and vacation when 2 courses and sometimes 3 overlap into each other. That is the reason why I semi-retired from screenwriting. Something had to give. That was it. I can’t work, go to school and concentrate on screenwriting (including promoting myself) at the same time. I tried and it didn’t work. I’m not quitting. That would be the easy way out. I’m saying that I’m “putting it on the back burner” for now. I’ll still keep my eye open for opportunities as they come along, but as for ‘going for it’ and writing another screenplay – I’m done – for this year at last.
So, I’m going to enjoy this brief break I have now before school starts up again in February. As I said at the beginning of last year, “it’s going to be a very interesting year”. Ditto for 2014 for very different reasons. This is a new screenplay of this moment of my life that I began when I made the decision to go back to school. Act 1 is done. Act 2 is going to take up most of 2014 and as I said before, is going to be verrrrry interesting with lots of characters, drama and plot points.
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