Unfulfilled Ambitions – Do You Have Any?
I’ve been musing again. I was sipping my early morning mug of tea, waiting for the toast to burn at the time. My mind drifted off as it does in idle moments before actually getting down to some serious sort of work…..and I thought “Is there anything I haven’t done? Anything I would really like to do? I mean, really like to do?”
I’ve been lucky. The way life has gone so far I’ve been fortunate enough to be able to pick and choose ‘careers‘ (I use the term careers loosely). I’m one of those people who has butterflied all his life. I’ve tended to flit from one bit of fun to another, and as a result I’ve done a bit of this, a bit of that, and never really thought about the long term implications of not concentrating on just one thing and making a career out of it.
In fact, now that I think about it, the only real long term venture has been the self publishing and writing in the past 15 years or so….helping others to realise their dreams and opening doors for them, encouraging them to ‘have a go‘ at things they thought were out of their reach.
And I have to say I have enjoyed every minute of it. I get a kick out of seeing other people develop and fulfill their true potential. That sounds extremely pretentious and self-congratulatory, but I’m sure you get the idea….I have enjoyed working with people who ‘needed a hand‘.
So, as I say, I was musing. And I have to admit there is one thing I’ve always wanted to do, but never dared to do. Make a film.
I can’t think why I haven’t taken a shot at it? It’s easy enough. Write a script. Film it. Edit it. Show it. I have all the skills, sort of.
I could certainly write a screenplay. Now, I purposely didn’t say it would be a Hollywood blockbuster. It would be something smaller…character driven, based in the UK, humorous (?)….90 minutes……that would be a doddle.
I could film it. I suspect most people given a bit of spare time could make a film with the kit they have already. An inexpensive HD video camera would do the trick. Sound might be a problem for the real amateur, but once again I have all the gear needed to record decent enough sound. A couple of pals to act for me….’be natural’….that would work. No cost involved.
Edit the footage. Again, I suspect there are thousands of people who are doing some kind of video editing on computers right now. Okay, they may only be editing the kids throwing snowballs at grandma, but it’s editing. It’s easy enough.
And that’s it. Done. A finished film. We’re in business. “Look at me. I’m a film maker.”
And it’s at this point that I have to tell you about something that happened about four years ago. I was asked to produce three short films, 15 minutes or so in length, for my local ‘heritage’ group. It took three months to do all the interviews and grab cutaway shots etc and then edit the three films which finally went onto DVD. 100 copies.
But, here’s the real bonus, a week after I handed over the DVDs I received a phonecall telling me one of the films would be shown at a special heritage event in the local Multiplex theatre….up on the big screen, in front of an expected audience of 200 or so.
Yikes…! I was shaking in my boots. What would it look like blown up onto the big screen? Would the sound be okay? Would the colour balance look okay? Would it be in focus?
There’s a massive difference between watching a ‘home made’ video on a small TV screen and up there on a Multiplex widescreen….help! I really was worried.
I have to tell you it was the most amazing thing I’ve ever seen. The HD video looked great up there. The sound was fine. I can’t imagine anyone in that packed movie theatre thought “This looks and sound amateur“. They were just watching another ‘movie‘, and laughing at the funny bits, going very quiet during the emotional bits, all the things a proper movie audience would do watching a proper film. Honestly, it was amazing. I was completely and utterly blown away.
Yet, after a couple of minutes of being ‘amazed‘ I felt a real sense of “Why haven’t I been doing this all along? Why don’t I drop everything and just make films?‘ It was that powerful. And as I walked away from the event I somehow knew I wouldn’t do it. Why?
Maybe it was the fear of failure? Maybe it was because it was the biggest opportunity that had ever come along in life and I didn’t want to blow it? Who knows?
And the point being? Well, I suppose what I’m suggesting is that whatever it is you want to do then do it. Don’t be frightened. Don’t be put off by self-doubt. And it doesn’t have to be making a film, it could just as easily be ‘writing a book’, ‘writing an article for the local newspaper’ ‘submitting a short story to a national magazine’….these are all things that anyone wanting to be a serious writer could achieve.
Life is too short. If you want something, go and get it. Give it a try.