What I’m writing – when it doesn’t work out

I’ve fallen in love.


Not music, nor a person (thank goodness), nor a cat (much to He-Who-Shouts-while-playing-Unreal-Tournament’s delight), but with a mug this time.

Yep. A mug

Read it. Take it in. Breathe in the reality and depth of those words… printed on A FUCKING MUG.

So that’s my new thing – Living the way it says to live on the mug, because these are things I want to do. And its all done with added F-bombs. (By the way, I don’t HAVE the mug, but I would LOVE the mug *hint hint* if you’re reading this, He-Who-Shouts-while-playing-Unreal-Tournament).

It’s not about being free or leaving it all behind. It’s about doing scary stuff, and failing and fucking up but learning from those fuck ups and failures and taking what you do to the next level. I’ve never been good with committing to things that involve failure. Things that I MIGHT NOT BE PERFECT AT (OMG the palpitations). Being told I’m not good at something is what keeps me awake at night. Knowing that I’m going to fail something brings me out in a cold sweat, so as a rule don’t do things I’ll fail at.

I’ll begin with an update on the competition I entered months ago. Unless they were completely awed by my poetry SKILLZ and just haven’t told me that I was better than the winner, I didn’t even get placed.

I FAILED. And, you know what, it didn’t kill me. I’m still here. I’m not even that hurt, actually. I took a chance, and it didn’t pay off. So what?

Fail cat pic
Cat not giving a shit about failure

And now I’m FAILING again. That’s right, I’ve quit Camp Nanowrimo. I over committed myself in head-space and don’t have the bandwidth to continue with the chosen (brilliant but traumatic) storyline. It’s not the right time, it’s not the right story, it’s not the right… now, so I’ve stopped. There’s no shame in not completing a nanowrimo. I feel better for it, actually. Having one less pressure right now feels right. I feel more balanced and able to cope so I know it’s the right thing to do. I just know it didn’t work out. That’s all.

Another failed cat pic
Another failed cat pic – see, it doesn’t matter.

However, not doing camp nanowrimo has meant that my little mind can wander a bit so it’s gone on some kind of weird trip.

When I was younger, I was determined I was going to write. I kept journals from the time I was fifteen. When I was seventeen, I discovered screen-writing and wrote a pilot episode of a sitcom. Yep, a full episode scripted. At seventeen. I’m impressed by my adolescent self, because my adult self doesn’t know how the FUCK to write a script, nor what she would put in a script, but at seventeen, I knew. From what I remember of the last time I read it (a few years ago now) it is actually laugh-out-loud funny in places. It was the late nineties when my own burgeoning sexuality clashed with my first crush and inappropriate behaviours in my circle of friends were commonplace. This mix made it both awkwardly funny and naively endearing. As a teen trying to find out where she fit in a world of boobs (I have none), and other people’s sex (again, I had none), and attempting to seduce older men (yep, more failing), and all the STUFF that happens when you’re growing up, it was quite a brave and creative thing to do. I never submitted or let other people read it, but it still exists and that’s probably enough.

My fascination with script writing and sitcoms carried on for some time. I became obsessed with Red Dwarf and wrote some (quite frankly bloody awful) fanfic (OK so I’m starting to cringe here), which cast me as a writer for the show (oh God, yes I’m cringing. Double cringing). Out of this came a couple more scripts, which are buried in journals and shall never see the light of day. I attempted to go to drama school, with the intention of starting as a Stage Manager and working my way up to director and writer.

Life had other plans for me though and it didn’t work out that way. I didn’t go to drama school. I didn’t become a famous musician, or even a good one. I didn’t get my face on TV (you can breathe a sigh of relief for that one.) and I never ever wrote the damn sitcom or did anything that would put me at ANY RISK OF FAILURE EVER.

Obviously, as you can probably guess from all the melodrama, I’ve been thinking about writing another script recently. We (and by that I mean me. He-who-is-just-getting-back-into-Unreal-Tornament was indulging in his latest hobby, of course) have just finished watching the new Netflix series LOVE which was actually rather great and I’m beginning to wonder whether the thing I was kind of writing the last time I did a What I’m Writing would be better as some kind of work place based sitcom. Sort of a cross between The IT crowd and The Thick of it. Or maybe even Teachers. Some kind of dystopian work place indulgence on an over-worked trope that for some reason seems to fascinate the British. (Mainly me.)

Maybe I’ll have a go with this. And maybe it will work out. Maybe it won’t.

Writing Bubble

10 thoughts on “What I’m writing – when it doesn’t work out

  1. That is totally a mug worth falling in love with. And I love how this post completely epitomises its message. Yay for failing! And yay for scriptwriting! I’m pretty sure chancing it is the only way anyone ever gets anything done. Anything worthwhile, anyway… xx

    1. I want that mug. Might dig out the script tonight and have a read. Not the most productive way to move forward… Already have a couple of ideas though.

  2. I want that Mug in my life, am somewhat of a procrastinator gator! Am I right in thinking you can get software for script writing now – does the formatting etc (am such a technophobe!) good luck – sounds like a goer 🙂

    1. High five for procrastination! You can. There are a couple of free things you can get but the top notch serious biz is Final Draft which costs about 179 quid. Not that I looked…
      Scrivener will do some formatting for you if you ask nicely, I believe.
      Thank you… It’ll be fun either way, right?

    1. Thank you. Confidence is failing a bit since He-who-plays-zelda’s friends are really good at this kind of stuff. 🙁

  3. I want that mug too! And hooray for embracing failure! I think actually, as long as you (we) do embrace failure then it isn’t really failure. Failure is what happens when we don’t even try because we’re too scared of failing. Taking failing on the chin however and feeling the fear and doing it anyway, that’s bravery and you can’t truly fail if you have that. Read the script – it’s probably a hidden gem. Go for it. Thanks for linking to #WhatImwriting

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