I generally loathe “life coaching busy work,” but annual goal setting is one such process that I find helps me gauge my progress in a world of otherwise invisible forward movement. One January I wrote as a goal, “Own a makeup vanity.” I promptly forgot about it, but by September I had purchased a vintage American by Martinsville bedroom set from Craigslist. When I looked at the list in December, I was shocked that such a tiny subconscious intention had actually manifested itself into my most treasured possession.
The bedroom set is gone, sold back on Craigslist for far under market value (such is the fate of “fire sale” items), but the goals persist. It’s not December, but my life is about to change, so I took a look at this year’s objectives, one of which included writing and shooting a season of webisodes for a series I’ve written called The Poet Laureate of Fayette County.
Regular readers of my blog–few and mighty you are–know that I generally can’t keep my mouth shut about anything I’m working on; this project is no exception. I wrote the series, but all it has done is sit on my computer in Final Draft for the better part of a year. What I’ve done instead–co-creating, co-writing, and co-shooting a season of Uncommon Chaos with my dear friend Jason Lott–was something much more attainable and ultimately more ambitious.
Jason and I first became acquainted when we were both performing at a charity event in DC about five years ago, and after that we seemed to keep crossing paths, working on plays/musicals together, even landing in LA around the same time. Turns out, Jason not only is willing to share his delicious Tunisian stew recipe with me, he’s also willing to share his ideas, time, and energy. Boom! A sketch comedy duo is born.
When you have creative compatibility with someone, it’s sort of like falling in love. You have to trust that person implicitly. I have been fortunate in my life to really have that connection with a couple gentlemen: Jason, of course, and Charlie, whom I’ve played music with for more than half a decade. And for the first time ever, I’m finding great creative collaboration with three women I admire–the Scirens.
Sharing, admittedly, is hard for me. I was that annoying student in class who never wanted to do group projects, and, when forced to, complained incessantly to the teacher that the others weren’t pulling their weight. I like working by myself, and sometimes I even have the audacity to fancy myself an auteur. Realistically, though, no man is an island, and I’m no more a lone wolf than I am a Republican.
So to look back at this year’s goals and to see that I didn’t write, direct, star in, and produce Season One of Poet Laureate by myself was anything but disappointing. What I saw was the interconnectedness of my life with my creative partners, my friends, without whom Season One of Uncommon Chaos would never have been possible.
With this in mind, I would like to extend my deepest gratitude to everyone who made all seven episodes come to fruition. Thank you for making me a better person.