A Few Stolen Thoughts For the Day

So my sister-in-law is visiting for the weekend and has hijacked the Peanut and the Missus, allowing me to slip away to my office/man cave to write. Of course I’m blogging instead — but only for the moment. Just taking a break. Honest.

I’m still waiting for the producers’ notes for the Wedding Comedy outline; I do know that two guys loved the outline and one guy has problems with it, which will invariably equal big headaches on my part. As I sit tight and try to distract myself from imagining what they’re going to throw at me, I’ve been taking notes for the second draft of my current spec, a high school comedy — I have to roll up my sleeves and turn my 117-page mess of a first draft, written in a two week white heat before the baby was born, into something halfway decent. Given the state of the draft, I’ll settle for something a quarter decent. Or at least typo-free.

ANYWAY, as I was going through old writing notebooks earlier, looking for a brilliant idea that turned out to be considerably less than brilliant when I finally found it, I came across various quotes from artists I admire. Over the years I’ve gotten into the habit of jotting down my heroes’ words as little pick-me-ups for whenever I get bummed out or blocked or whatever. Here are a few that jumped out at me today…

“I never got into being discouraged, because I never got into hoping. When I was a kid, I never got used to expecting success. I got used to failing. Once you do that, the rest is easy. It took a lot of the pressure off. I just said, ‘Hell, I’m a loser. I don’t have to worry about anything.’ I assumed immediately that nothing was happening. But that’s not the same as giving up. You keep trying, but you don’t count on things. It can be a strength. Because I know some people who sweat out winning so much it kills them. So, in the end, they lose anyway.” — Bruce Springsteen

“If a person with a demonstrably ordinary mind, like mine, will devote himself to giving birth to a work of the imagination, that work will in turn tempt and tease that ordinary mind into cleverness.” — Kurt Vonnegut

“Never let yourself get bored. If you’re bored, you’re useless. Either relish your task, or reinvent it, or drop it cold. You’re doing no one a favor by slogging through it. Work should always be engaging. It doesn’t always have to be fun, but you must never bore yourself.” — Frank Miller

“Any man who keeps working is not a failure. He may not be a great writer, but if he applies the old-fashioned virtues of hard, constant labor, he’ll eventually make some kind of career for himself as a writer.” — Ray Bradbury

Next post: “To Live and Die (of Encouragement) in L.A.”

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5 Comments on “A Few Stolen Thoughts For the Day”

  1. kzwriter Says:

    Here’s one of my favorites by C.S. Lewis…
    “”Even in literature and art, no man who bothers about originality will ever be original: whereas if you simply try to tell the truth you will, nine times out of ten, become original without ever having noticed it.”

  2. WhatACard Says:

    Dude, nice blog! I’m glad I caught your facebook update!

    I don’t have a good motivational quote for you, but as one of the Ladies of 303*, I’ll share this quote with you from Catch 22:

    “It was degrading to have to depend so thoroughly on a person who had been educated at a state university.”

    *I’m counting it as one of your great missed opportunities that you never had a student film of that title in college.

  3. writerdad303 Says:

    kzwriter — that’s a terrific quote. I need to write that one down in my notebook. 🙂

    WhatACard (hee-hee! Our true identities remain a secret!) — thanks for stopping by! Glad you noticed the link… “The Ladies of 303” sounds more like a nudie calendar, though given the relatively low number of actual females in our little gang, we’d probably have to supplement several months with shots of some of us guys in drag — in which case, it’s just as well we never went there…

  4. WhatACard Says:

    Why am I cracking up at the thought of you all in drag?

  5. writerdad303 Says:

    I have no idea — the thought makes ME shudder in revulsion…:)


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