Wednesday, January 18, 2006

Why am I not writing? jobs and my life examined

KORY GOES INTROSPECTIVE ... again - part 36

Why am I not writing lately?Why am I not writing lately?Why am I not writing lately?
--------could it be because I just wrote for an hour and single-key-edly DELETED ALL OF IT??? I would really like to punch someone or something in the throat. sigh. If only computers came with throats. (the above repeated "Why am I not writing lately?" is all that was left of my copy/paste attempt). So... grrr.... let's try this again. If there's anything to put you in the mood to write, it's writing about not writing and then having all of your writing un-written for you by your own mis-writing.

[deep breath]
[deep breath]

-=-=-=-Why am I not writing lately?
-=-=-=-is it because of my sheer awesomeness? probably. Is it because I'm too busy? HA! please get whoever said that a hefty dose of knowing-what-Kory-does-all-day. Is it because I dont want to write? Nope. Ok, is it because... writing consistently would force me to confront the fact that I am one of a million billion thousand zillion people who consider themselves, if not a writer then one of those people-who-like-to-write. Yeah. that right there is the first ugly branch of the reality tree I strike on my way back to Earth. So if I'm not trying to write professionally, why am I writing? (ouch, the next branch) for fun? for you? for me? sure, there is that, I suppose. but that doesn't pay the bills (unless you're offering), but ok.. I'll run with that premise for now. 'I write for fun' buuuut.... I "hope to start writing professionally" I like to say. Ohhh, you mean like any number of those aforementioned million billion thousand ... yes, zillion people? (another branch, ouch) Ohhh the odds of "making it" - well.. odds or... the friends in connected-places or .. Fate.. or, if you swing such ways "Gods plan". I've been told that these things are what make it. Currently, I'm not sure of how much of any of them I have. Am I ready to gamble against those odds? What's that? "talent" you say? "you just need talent to make it"??? Oh, you're funny.
-=-=-=-And so I keep waking up at the base of this career tree - bruised, bloody, confused... a little gassy. And I ask myself (again) so what do I want to be doing in life? I've already turned down many a profession - astronaut flight commander, Honorary Mayor of Awesometown, Captain of the Chairman of the Admiral of Police and Fire Safety (I'll admit, I was also suspicious of that job title, but it checked out) and of course, the one I came closest to accepting... Oakland Raiders head coach. So ... then it was back to choosing from one of my seven careers. Writing seems to be the one I enjoy the most, maybe only because I am actually exposed to it on any given day (how often do I get to practice documentary filmmaking or bar owning or volleyball coaching these days? Not much, I'll tell you)
-=-=-=-So ok... "writing" then. If you gave me a topic to write about, could I? sure.. Like an ever shrinking majority of Americans, I can put a word in front of another word in front of another word without a reader saying "sorry, what language is that?" Would I want to write about your topic though? [silence] [looks around room pensively] [changes subject instead of answering] Yeah, that'd be the next major branch I smack my face full force into. "But you cant even write a sentence without ending it in a preposition!!" you say. "To Hell, .. go .. you" I answer awkwardly - there are times for the grammatical rules of writing and me writing about my writing is not one of them.
-=-=-=-Really though, I'm no Hemmingway, Sedaris or Frey (2006-news-timeliness-alert!) and I can be a bit ADD ... and OCD... and.. what was I.. talking abou... oh yeah... my awesomeness. As in... it's.. semi-objectively speaking.. passably great. I think and I've been told that I might have something worthwhile to offer in terms of a book or journalisto-type newspaper or magazine articles but Is This What I Want To Be Doing In Life??? And yet, as obvious as it might be that the question itself may just be an avoidance technique for committing to something... anything... it's still a valid question, even if it treads heavily on the avoidance centers of my brain. Aren't people still changing careers every 10 years? How do I know I'll like or wont like writing unless I try? Why dont I just give it a shot? What could it hurt? Where are the batteries for the VCR remote? Who let the dogs out? these are the ultimate questions in life.
-=-=-=-I now hear myself calling... (myself) to answer these questions... finally. I say "finally" because I distinctly remember a summer between 2nd and 3rd grade when a neighborhood parent asked my friend and I 'what we wanted to be when we grew up' - my friend quickly answered fireman (I've heard through the grapevine that he is now a successful San Diego business jerk). I think my answer was 'goalie for the San Diego Sockers' for lack of anything better to say. Since then, I've never really had a clear vision of what I wanted to do for a profession. Through high school, I started to get minor inklings into possible futures that could unfold for me... actor, psychologist, professor, captain of the men's Olympic volleyball team, model, hand model, foot model, hand and foot model, and of course, gaucho. In college, most dreams of these fell by the wayside and only 'psychologist' seemed to remain. Two and a half years into my psychology major, I realized I didn't want to follow any of the branches of psychology. Awesome. What to do now? Then came my moment of meta-awareness of that moment being thee moment where I would pick the path my life would definitively follow. And so I chose American Studies with a documentary film emphasis. Which is, of course, why I am making documentaries about America-related subjects, right? - ahem. right. It's a long story and I've already digressed far enough away from the original subject of writing but I do promise that I will return you safely to your original upright and locked positions momentarily - the long-story-short of it is that once I was out of college, I got a series of jobs that paid actual money instead of following after non-existent (in SF at least) documentary positions that paid only in experience and humility and sooo, ... eleven years later... here I am: eleven years removed from the documentary film world, wondering if I should be that 36 year old guy who takes production assistant jobs to get arsehole directors coffee just so that I could make some use of my college major continually hoping to climb the ladder of film production success... instead of continuing this oh-so-lucrative resume-factoid-building career in telecom or (coming full circle.. see? i told you I would) now considering.... a career jump to writing.
[deep breath]
-=-=-=-And so.... here I am - contemplating, not a jump from / to writing... but just a jump to writing - as in, in addition to anything I might be doing for gainful employment now. Later, once I am a highly successful writer and part time astronaut, I can leave telecom behind and laugh heartily at the time I spent whiling away 7+ years of my life in an industry that bores me so far beyond 'silly', it should be criminal. Writing, acting, business owning, real estate, coaching volleyball - whatever it is, these things would not bore me. Not in the slightest. Why have I waited until now to pursue such... well.. pursuits? Couldn't I have jumped on the right path right out of college? I dont have an answer for any of that. I do know though that I am finally more concerned with the 'what I'll do' than being caught up in the 'why I haven't done it yet'. And so far, that feels like a good thing.

1/30/06 update - I decided I dont want to be a writer.
2/1/06 update - I joined a writers group that'll be putting together writing pieces to be read aloud by writers or actors.
2/2/06 update - A friend of Esra's writes for an online magazine (that I will not mention lest I jinx everything) and offered to propose to his editor some story ideas that I might write.

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