Thursday, July 2, 2015

The Concept of Fun: How To Get Back On The Horse

"Maybe...a top...7 List?"

Excuses chase their tail 'round and 'round in my brain while the pen in my hand mimics the race on a ripped and accidentally coffee stained sheet of note paper.

"Maybe I can do a 'How To' video! Yeah, that's it! Now, I'll just spend a few hours looking for the best screen capture software..."

More excuses.

The laundry needs to get done...

The kids need to eat...

The dishes need to be washed and put away and the living room carpet needs to be cleaned...

...more excuses...

Everything seems to pull me away from following up with my next post, my next blog, my next vlog. "Oh, look! I need to catch up on all my subscribed videos," I say as my attention wanes again. "If I don't keep up with these, there's going to be a backlog, and I'll never catch up...wish I had more coffee..."

...more excuses...

I got it in my head to start a video channel a few months ago. My logical reasoning for doing so was something to the tune of, "Well, since I think visually as I write. It would just make sense if I conveyed these thoughts into a visual medium, because I feel that they will translate well." Of course. Because, I'm a guy. Guys think visually. Ergo...[CUT TO: me mugging the camera gesturing with hands spread out, palms up, as if to say, 'here you go'.] I have a camera, I have at least a smattering of knowledge when it comes to non-linear editing, camera perspective, lighting angles, timing, and writing...sort of. The problem I have, does not lie in any of these things. The big problem I have, is that I tend to follow a pattern when it comes to situations like this:

  1. Blindly yet passionately pursue thing that I'd like to do.
  2. Work and study diligently all the things that have to do with making that thing work.
  3. Apply new found knowledge and make that thing.
  4. Make that thing.
  5. Obsess over every detail and present that thing, feeling that it will never amount to anything.
  6. Feel all the wind come out of your sails when you recognize your self-fulfilling prophecy.
  7. Mope.
  8. Flounder and flail and occupy yourself with other things to assuage the feelings of low self-worth.
  9. Look for something else to do.
  10. Find that thing.
  11. Lather, rinse, repeat.

Yes, there is the motivation to do something interesting. Of course, I don't know what I'm doing, but I have to start somewhere. There is no perfect path, this is the ultimate lear[CUT TO: daughter flipping on the television and gleefully reciting her favorite cartoon by heart.]

"Honey, it's summer. That means you go outside and play." [CUT TO: daughter slowly trudging back to her room to change out of her jammies.]

There is no perfect path, this is the ultimate learning method when it comes to something like this. I've made one video, so far, as a warming-up excersize to facilitate the video that I had originally intended to make. I still intend to make that video, but since the first one wasn't well received, doubt and negativity had made it that much more difficult to continue. I am writing this post in order to get back on the horse. This is the deep breath before I exhale a woo shaah. So before I get back into it, here are a few things I learned about making the first one.

  1. It Will Never Be Perfect. Like... ever. You go in with a script. You go in with the proper equipment. You go in with the best editing software available. You go in following everything to the letter, you paste everything together in perfect sequence, you hit the submit button, and I guarantee you, a week later, you will still think of a dozen other things you could have done. So, instead of constantly taking your video down, and tweaking it on a daily basis, I guess the best thing to do in this situation is to keep whatever you wanted to do that time in mind, and make it better next time. Kind of like how I make pizza dough.
  2. Editing Is Not Instantaneous. It doesn't matter if your video is five minutes or a full hour. It doesn't matter if you're just starting out, or you've been doing this for years. You are going to spend a lot...a LOT of time in front of your editor getting rid of every "um" and "uh" and ruined or flubbed take. You sit and worry because your original shot(s) are heading northwards of at least 60 minutes, but once you put your nose to the grindstone and start trimming, you'll notice that your epic flub-fest has been trimmed down to a fairly articulate, and mercifully shorter, presentation.
  3. Things In Motion Tend To Stay In Motion. Simply put, once you get the ball rolling, don't stop. 
Yeah sure, you made a video and it received a pitiful amount of views in the first week. If you're wondering why that is, let's run through the checklist again, shall we? Did you: Get the word out on all of your social media accounts? Did you plug your post for the proper amount of time? Did you use proper labels on your piece to make your post more accessible to search engines?  Did you[CUT TO: daughter opening the front door to come inside and park herself in front of the television again. Daddy got so engrossed into what he's doing, he didn't notice she went outside and came back.]
"Sweetie, you didn't stay outside long enough. You need to get some fresh air and sunshine."
"I don't want to, daddy."

...Did you give an eye catching-title and utilize all the bells and whistles at your disposal? Did you engage with your audience? If you answered no to any or all of these, chances are that you're a MISERABLE FAILURE AND YOU SHOULD JUST HOP A JUNKER TO THE ANTARCTIC AND SPEND THE REST OF YOUR DAYS COUNTING PENGUINS!!!

...sorry, was that out loud?

It's not that I don't feel like packing it in, smashing my camera with a hammer and find a job as a Wal Mart greeter or something. It's not so much that I got discouraged. It's that I hate the feeling of starting something, and then once it starts, not having the will to continue on with it. It sucks. It hurts. It [CUT TO: daughter bouncing around in the kitchen for no apparent reason.]

"Okay, sweetie? You really, really have to go outside. You have so much energy and it's a nice day out. If you want to run around and jump and stuff, it might be better if you do it while climbing trees, chasing butterflies...anything. I think you have no concept of what fun means..."

[CUT TO: voice in my head whisper "neither do you." in a mocking tone. Scene ends with writer unloading the dryer and making lunch for children.]