Month: September 2016

My name in lights .. 

I’ve been wondering about the best use of this blog, and ways that I can use it to engage a readership and explore more of my journey as an actor, producer, and writer. After rereading my previous posts, and the unwritten, unfinished posts that sit half done, or as titles and themes on a list in my office – I realised that all of those dealt with parts of my journey. Dealing with things from stage fright, to what kept me coming back as an actor, what keeps my writing and struggling and reaching. 

There are reoccurring themes that I find myself running into – but to lay them out on the table and openly discuss them is confronting and I think that in that confrontation lies something worth really discussing and expanding. 

Looking back through some old photos from my trip to London last year, I came across this photo of myself standing on the stage of Les Mis and I can still feel the electricity under my skin and taste that potential. 


So to kick off a very soft relaunch and repositioning of my little online home – amusingly to bring it back to what I had intended to use it for in the first place – I will be posting weekly blogs journaling and discussing the things that I love about the acting “game”. Inside and out. These are the things that may be challenging but that keep me coming back time and again. 

Hopefully exploring this will be a little helpful to some people who are struggling with their own journey – I love the creative world. It is so rich and deep and varied and it never ceases to amaze me how inspired I can become.

The arts can, and should, and does change the world. 

There is a reason that I fell in love with it. There is a reason that I am still in love with it. There is a reason that I fall a little more in love with it every day. 

I want to share that with all of you. 

S. 

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Productive Places 

Happy Monday!!! Arguably the greatest day of the week (not just because I am currently fuelled by a half dozen shots of coffee). Recently I’ve spoken about my productivity levels, my procrastination levels, and my scattered mind trying to adjust and understand the billion and a half things I have going on at the moment. As a part of this development I have spent some time reflecting on “How” I work and what impact that may make on my productivity. 

I have spent quite a few years trying to fit myself to the work style that I “thought” I should use. Trying to embrace patterns and getting up early to take advantage of the early mornings, finding my 9-5 creative groove and work the system as best I can. So after several years of that .. Yeah … No. That’s not a thing.
I’ve found that I work really well from 11pm – 5pm. I’ve found that this isn’t done well in isolation. I find it really difficult to get my mojo on (yes I have mojo – I’m basically Hermione Granger yo #ministerformagic) in a vacuum “early” in the day. Ergo I frequent lovely little cafes and public libraries. I love a space that is full of bustle and noise. I know so many people hate them, and find working in them as being far too distracting but I find them to be soothing. The grinder whirring away in the background is wonderful white noise for me and let’s my settle in with a cup of coffee (that I didn’t make myself – this is important – they’re always better) and gently ease my way into the day. I can find my rhythm in these little hubs, and if I frequent them often enough to be a regular, find wonderful opportunities for breaks with other regular costumers and staff. 

The other point of the day that I find I am equally productive in is a little harder to manage. Between the hours of 11pm and 2am the world is silent and still. My creative energies will always get a second wind and I can lose whole hours pacing the house with a notebook in my hand muttering to myself. Throw on a white noise / rain track / quiet jazz album (with no vocals – again important) and I can, and do, work until the sun creeps over the horizon and I retreat to my bed. 

The schedule is then broken up nicely, and while I don’t always maintain it (the midnight writing sessions are hard to keep up – plus the pull of Netflix is real – House of Cards – oh my god) I find a couple of night sessions a week give me a really great output of work, far more than when I was trying to manage a 9 – 5 schedule. 

S. 

Chasing cars… 

I don’t know about you guys – but sometimes I struggle a little with containing all of the thought bubbles that are floating around in my brain at any one time. I start out fine – but I end up chasing random thoughts around like a puppy chasing after a car, that then finds another car, and another, and holy wow that one is just so shiny and .. Wait .. How did I get here again? 

One of the biggest problems that I face day to day is not figuring out my plan, we’ve talked about this, I love a good plan. My biggest problem is keeping myself on track. Finding that level of mindfulness that will allow me to keep on one track and see a project, or a task through to it’s completion without being pulled entirely off topic.

For example – this blog post. What I started doing this morning was finishing putting together my 18 month calendar, which was halted when I started adding things to my list of things for today, which was stalled when I realised I needed to add something to the presents for my partner’s birthday this weekend, which moved into a Pinterest binge, which moved into a blog post on how I can’t stay focused. My computer is on top of my calendar as I write this …. 


I am fairly confident that doing this is not helpful. I am fairly confident that it leads to to taking on more than I can necessarily commit to. I am fairly confident that I should not be so confident about anything. This is not a way of achieving best practise. 

In saying all of this though – identifying the problem is the first step towards finding a solution. I will do some research and report back to you. I know you’re keen to know how I go with this.

Have a good week – you wonderful majestic human beings. 

S. 

Don’t wait till Monday … 

Sometimes I get really caught up in that cycle. I can only start a diet / work out / writing schedule / Llama Farm on a Monday. That’s how that works. The universe has spoken – they collectively decided that all good things, all of the things of worth and substance should be started on a Monday (It should be noted that if the Monday also falls on the first day of the month it’s extra magical. Bonus points will also be awarded for a Monday that is not only the first day of the month, but the first day of the year as well .. ). 

It all has a nice symmetry to it and no one really wants to mess with the system. 

Of course none of us really like Mondays (I do actually – but that’s the subject of a whole other post)  .. So it’s the perfect excuse to break whatever cycle we were planning before we even start it. I know I’ve been guilty of that – and once the cycle, which never existed, is broken .. Well I can’t start again until Monday. Them’s the rules. 

Then again, even if we do start it on a Monday, whatever our specific goal might be, we can fall off that wagon at any time. Falling off is not day specific. It can be enjoyed at any time, day or night. 

Maybe .. Just maybe .. If we didn’t wait. If we stopped eyeing off the first day of the week as the beginner of all things .. We’d stop wigging ourselves out so much. Maybe we should just start. Who knows what might happen then* .. 


*Obviously the universe will collapse. What – are you crazy?

Happy Saturday! 

S.