Friday, November 04, 2005

Who are You?

Denis McGrath has a great post today that dovetails a conversation I had with my father last week when I was heading to the Augusta, GA airport to return here to LA.

Now to put this in context, Dad and I were talking about the trip and how good it was to see each other - the sort of review you do before you have to step through the metal detectors and head for the gate to catch your flight. In this case we were driving to the airport along the fields of the CSRA (Central Savannah River Area), and Pop comes up with something out of the blue:

"You know that I know nothing about what you do. You didn't get any of that creative stuff from me. That's just not my world, but I have to respect the fact that you went out there and are doing it on your own without any help from your old man..."

WOW. It kind of hung in the air there, held aloft by its own power. Then after the shock wore off, and I thought of something to say, 'cause you can't leave something like that alone, and I stammered in that little boy voice that all men use with their fathers in these kinds of moments:

"Well, you and I aren't so different Dad. You put together financing plans for companies. I put together blueprints for producers and directors."

Then, in a moment of utter brilliance (okay, maybe not sooo brilliant), I said:

"It's not what we do so much as who we are."

I think he understood.

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I cannot see myself doing anything else with my life.

Writing and producing and all of the associated stuff that I do with film and DVD is who I am. I have to see the whole thing through to the point where that DVD is put in your player and you can sit back, relax and enjoy it. Everything I do is so I can reach that point in the process, and it is sooooooo worthwhile it makes up for all the gut-wrenching phone calls, faxes, emails, politics, financial woes and lack of a personal life.

What gets you excited? What makes you want to jump in headfirst and swim in its cool clear water? What is worthy of your sacrifices?

Who are you?

3 comments:

Shaun said...

What gets you excited? Writing stories, and creating characters that I can breathe a little life into for the duration of their existence on the page.

What is worthy of your sacrifices? The pleasure of putting finger to keyboard. It's like a drug.

Who are you? A struggling author!

John Donald Carlucci said...

Lord, this is a question indeed Bill.

The pat answer would be a spec monkey looking to turn pro, but that's too easy.

I write screenplays because I want to see my words come out of other people. I want to see what a film crew can do with my work and how they improve it. I want to see my words come to life.

I enjoy fiction because I have an unlimited budget and complete freedom.

I write because a friend of mine told me she quoted one of my stories to a friend. That feeling never gets old.

JDC

Bill Cunningham said...

The hard questions are always the ones worth examining.