Thursday, August 20, 2015

The Writing Prompt Boot Camp: Day One

I have a confession to make. I am a horrible writer. Now, I don't mean the content I write is bad. It could be, but I don't care if it is or not. What I mean is, I'm horrible about actually writing. I am a master of finding excuses to write. I'm easily distracted.

Squirrel!



I graduated from Full Sail University in May, with a BFA in Creative Writing for Entertainment. YAY for me! But what good does that degree do for me? Honestly? Nothing, except for land me a job that really has nothing to do what I went to school for. What is important about my time at FSU is the experience I had and the awesome lessons I learned about the craft of writing for entertainment. Also, we learned a lot about the business part of the entertainment business. That is something that is very important. Once again, yay for me!

 What I've discovered since graduating is that none of that means shit if I don't have material to submit. If I want to be a screenwriter, I have to have spec scripts to show people. If I want to be a television writer, I have to have television spec scripts to show people. If I want to be an author, I need to have manuscripts to publish. If I want to be a comic book writer, I need to have comic books to publish. Get the idea?

I have a total of ZERO of these things!

I have a lot of reasons why I haven't had "time" to write. And being completely honest, they are all bull shit!

The truth is I hate sitting down and focusing on one thing. I love to read blogs because they're short and easy to move on to something else. I love twitter because there are only 140 characters to deal with.

Well, I'm done with all that. I can't stand thinking about what I wish I was doing or what I wish I was, and feeling the guilt from the knowledge that the ONLY thing keeping me from living those wishes is me.

So I procrastinated a little longer, and I searched for writing prompts. That search lead me to Writer's Digest's writing prompt page. Which lead me to The Writing Prompt Boot Camp: Two Weeks of Craft, Creativity, and Discipline, a free PDF from Writer's Digest. Yay, my procrastination finally paid off.

Yesterday I started the two week boot camp. I decided that I would share my progress here. Of course, I got distracted again and forgot to share it. So, here for your viewing pleasure is my day one of the Writing Prompt Boot Camp.



Day 1
Breaking Up With Writer’s Block
It’s time for you and Writer’s Block to part ways. Write a letter breaking up with Writer’s

Block, starting out with, “Dear Writer’s Block, it’s not you, it’s me …”

The Writing Prompt Boot Camp: Day One
by Cruz Andronico Fernandez

     Dear Writer's Block, it's not you, it's me. I never should have let it go on this long. I enjoyed the freedom we had together, but I need to spread my wings. You've been with me for so long that I don't know how to live with out you. I'm trying, really, really, hard to be my own man. It's time for us to part ways.
    There was a time when we had a good time. I could open up an email and get lost in all the hyperlinks. I could surf all day long and not come back to shore. But, what has this cost me?
    I haven’t written a creative writing piece since I graduated! Even before then, I would only write the minimum to get a passing grade. School was just another excuse you helped me come up with to avoid doing what I was meant to do. You always found a way to trick me into procrastination.
    And that's the real issue, isn't it?
    You don't really exist. There is no such thing as Writer's Block. It's just a name you use, Mara, the tempter. See? I know your real name. You go by many. Procrastination, Writer's Block, Laziness, Apathy. But, they're all the same entity.
    Mara, a Buddhist metaphor for "temptations or passions personified." The living embodiment of negative attachment.
    I have been attached to comfort and routine. Unable to let go of "free time." But, the time has not been free. It has cost me. I've lost years of productivity, of work, of my future, to a pursuit that was an illusion. The time I spent on Facebook could have been spent writing a short story that I could have submitted to a market and been paid for. I loose, potential, money every time I check my email.
    I am a master of justification and excuses. I got a college degree because it was easier to study about writing than to write. Does having a BFA help? Yes, for getting jobs that have almost nothing to do with the career I set out to do. I'm a good writer; I can justify just about anything.
    I love being a writer. I don't love dreaming of being a writer. When I take a nap in the afternoon, I sometimes wake up with a headache. That's how I'm beginning to feel every time I daydream about the career and life I wish I were living. It's painful to think about the novel I want to write. It hurts listening to industry professionals’ talk about how to break into the movie business during another webinar. I've heard a 1000 different ways to break into the industry. But, I lack the one, absolute most important element to breaking in; I don't have ANY completed material!
    How can any of the information I've acquired help me if I don't produce something? The answer is, it can't!
    So, Writer's Block, this is where we part ways. Our Karma is no longer compatible. You must move on and find some other poor soul to latch on to. I must move forward and embrace this new phase of my life. I'm not the same person who you first met. I'm a man, now. It's time to say goodbye.

Sincerely,
Cruz Andronico Fernandez

Later today, or tonight, I'll write up day two and upload that as well. Come back tonight or tomorrow for Day Two...