I have to wake up and drink Chamomile tea to slow down. I have incredible fucking energy! - Janice Dickinson
That's part of the policy: To keep switching gears - Ridley Scott
The tempestuous waves of catering season have subsided but I nevertheless remain afloat on more tranquil waters. Twenty pounds of Epsom Salts intended for soaking my muscles during the onslaught have built merciful bridges leading me back, on an intuitive level, to the real work of conjuring via late night rituals.
With the slightest twist of my bathtub's faucets, I invent a personal ocean. Sinking in, just by my feet, I actualize a whale breaching the surface and shooting a geyser up into the firmament. Such quiet and contemplative moments are just preparation. Navigating via the moon and constellations, gradually but deftly shifting speeds from "Full" to "Half" to "Slow", closing my eyes and drifting to wander in my own galaxy. Like that immortal scene in Immortal Beloved, my reflection enables me to soar directly into the cosmos.
In this spirit of connection, we finally had our First Reading! Doug always strongly recommended this step because during creation you become blind to various script flaws. Inviting great writers to be the kid calling out the Emperor's nudity is essential and I'm deeply grateful he brought together such an impressive group of artists.
It's like back when that blurry formula my Science teacher scrawled with a green marker on a whiteboard resulted in my first Optometrist appointment. "Is this one better or is the second one clearer?" Similarly, we're asking for feedback on how sharply the eye of their mind can view the images described.
Additionally, though, the majority were play "wrights" and (as you may or not know) the etymology of that term derives from a craftsman. Picture a "smith" forging and bending words to tell their story through scenes for the stage. Their ears and senses are primarily attuned to dialogue, character, plot and structure.
This proves especially fortunate since the lesson becomes balancing my desire to paint with pictures (so much in cinema is captured on an unspoken level), with how to write dynamic scenes shaped by words, behavior, inflections and tones. Having a large reception of well respected writers and actors show up on a rainy Sunday afternoon and be fully present to listen and provide suggestions is something I have never experienced and I didn't realize how emotional it would be for me to finally share my work this way. I am deeply grateful for all those present and especially to Renee Michelle who procured us a beautiful recital room as the space for our flight test!
The next phase is rewrites. Feedback has been so encouraging. Excellent and insightful questions were asked to help open and elevate everything even further. We're curious to navigate this with our own compass of truth, and as a twin step, continue to build a list of female creatives to invite to our next reading for industry.
A playwright to whom we, ironically, had the honor of giving our own feedback is one of the most celebrated of our time Samuel D. Hunter. We saw a Lark reading of his new play in development Greater Clements and were both left in amazed admiration. It was my first encounter with his work and I immediately understood what all the hype is about and why it's so richly deserved.
On the filmmaking side, the most undeniable source of endless bliss in the past month was the Oscar-winning Argentinian instant classic The Secret In Their Eyes (2009). One particularly astounding five-minute continuous take sequence has the camera seemingly defying gravity and logic and left us screaming with shocked disbelief and the
need to replay. Our series strives to defy convention by being bold, ambitious and surprising. As an inspirational model for doing all of those things, this genre-bending masterpiece cannot be praised highly enough.
To conclude: during a storm where lightning was streaking through ominous clouds; I'm riding my bike home after a double shift. Struggling to cross the road with the grey continuing to whip rain above me, there almost instantaneously appeared a rainbow neatly slicing the sky in half. A magnificent gold light came blasting through from under
it's arc. Getting drenched to the bone even more, I couldn't help smiling and everything snapped into slow-motion as cars crawled past me to bask in this extraordinary moment. I suppose this otherworldly experience was already nudging me towards taking a moment to absorb the often unregarded marvels always surrounding us.