Happy New Year, folks! It’s that time of year again, where I set highly ambitious personal goals for the year ahead. Last year out of my ten resolutions I succeeded with 6 of them. Any bets on this year?
1. Take care of your damn self. Last year I was not kind to myself, which manifested in emotional as well as physical ways. I discovered that my go-to response to extreme stress is not eating, which, despite my natural wish as a chubby girl to lose weight, is not a good thing. There was a three day period last summer when I didn’t eat a full meal for three days because of something that was going on, and that’s not ok. I need to eat on a healthy schedule, I need to eat healthier things ON that schedule, I need to pay attention to not overworking myself, and I need to give myself a break once in a while.
2. Film another season of a web series you write. Be that Brains season 2, or an entirely new show, I want another season of my writing on the web.
3. Find a full-time job you don’t hate, or at LEAST series of steady part time jobs that pay rent. In May, I will graduate from grad school, effectively ending my formal education forever. From May 2016 on, I am a full adult person. While obviously I’d love to immediately get a job in TV or in web production as soon as I receive my MFA, that’s not realistic. But I really hate job hunting, and I hate being in constant fear of not making rent. By next January, I will have a full time or a steady series of part time jobs that, at the very, very least, I don’t hate. Let’s hope that’s not too much to ask.
4. Leave New York state at least twice. In 2015, I left New York exactly once, to go home for Christmas to Colorado. I love New York, and I love what I’ve managed to do since moving here, but sheesh, it wouldn’t kill me to do something else. Even if I only manage to go on a weekend trip to New Jersey or something, I don’t want this city to consume me the way it did in 2015.
5. Write a new draft of SLJ. My undergraduate senior thesis novel, The Secret Life of Jane, is one of my favorite pieces of writing I’ve ever made. It also needs a lot of work. I worked out a battle plan in 2015 for revision, so in 2016 I should put those to use and actually edit the stupid thing.
6. Write 2 new short stories. I love my new life in screenwriting, and it’s definitely where I should be, but getting scripts out there is hard. You have to rely on a bunch of other people, and while when that works it’s amazing, it isn’t always possible. Short stories, on the other hand, can be sent off to lit mags and other publications as soon as you’re happy with them, and having publishing credits under your belt looks impressive no matter what industry you’re in. Plus, I miss prose a little.
7. Find a slam poetry venue and perform. Even if I only perform once the entire year, I miss being on stage rhyming about hipsters and optimus prime and the word “fuck.”
8. Learn two new production skills. Summer 2015 was a crash course in filmmaking for me. I went from being merely a writer, actress, and vaguely-defined “producer” to a executive producing powerhouse, lead on-set sound person, head editor, camera operator, assistant director, production designer, [really bad] makeup person, as well as a bunch of other stuff. And it was hard and frustrating but I’m so glad I have those skills now, particularly in editing and producing. In 2016 I want to, either formally or again informally, learn two new skills. Right now, I have my eye on special effects makeup (which totally has nothing to do with the amazing-awesome Page, who did the special effects makeup on Brains season 1, moving to Seattle) and directing (if we get a Brains season 2, there’s already a plan to have me direct episode 8). But who knows! Maybe I’ll discover a deep-seated love for being a gaffer or a DP.
9. Stay in touch with people better. Be that Norman Steinberg after I graduate, my friends from home and from college, or my friend Rebecca who literally lives in New York but whom I barely ever see, I want to make sure that I don’t lost touch with the people who are important to me. I’m bad at this, so I could use some help, but this resolution is a promise that I’ll do my part.
10. Work on a set/production for something I didn’t write. Of course, it would be cool if I did this on a professional production and got paid, but if that’s out of the cards for 2016, I want to work on projects that aren’t mine so that I can learn about this industry from all angles and learn skills I might not otherwise learn.
What do you think? Should I add something else? Take something off? Revise? What are YOUR resolutions, if you have any?
2016, COME AT ME, BRO.