I met a bartender who wanted to write a screenplay.
These people always suck me in for a second before revealing how lost they really are, how much a waste of time they’ve really been.
I met him when I moved to Seattle, and he asked, of course, “What do you do?”
His eyes lit up when I said “writer”, and he asked, of course, “What kind of writing do you do?”
Encouraged by his bright eyes, I explained my work in journalism, blogging, and ebooks for writers.
Then he said, “Oh, I was hoping you wrote screenplays. I’ve been working on a screenplay.”
Later that night, he hit me with his story idea. Cute, clever, interesting — but not written down.
Seriously, he told me his whole idea, and finished with, “I’ve had this idea for years. I’m just waiting for someone to collaborate with.”
He hasn’t written a word.
I asked him if he’s done any writing — and he said no.
What?! You’ve had this one idea for “years”, and you haven’t written a word of it? And you’re telling people you’re “working on it”? Why haven’t you tried writing it, or let it go, or written an outline, or something, geez.
I asked him if he’s practiced or studied screenwriting at all. He said, “I read The Screenwriter’s Bible.”
Not about the book; I’d never even heard of it before this bartender. Heavy, heavy sigh about the reader.
Is that the fate of these books for writers?
Is that the fate of the words on this blog, of the heart and soul laid across the pages of A Writer’s Bucket List? Will the advice intended to inspire, motivate, and cultivate a life of writing be read by dreamers who never get off their asses and do anything?
You won’t be that bartender, will you, dear readers? You’re DIY Writers, after all; you wouldn’t possibly sit idly by with stories running through your mind that never make it to the page! You won’t read my book and then simply (virtually) lay it down and go on with your lives just as they were?
Promise me you’ll try something new, today and every day! Put your words on paper, write your stories down. Don’t be a bartender with a dream. Don’t be trapped behind a counter with a movie playing in your head every idle minute and never share it with the world! Do not waste your life reading how-to books if you’re never going to do any of it.
We write these words to get you doing.
Promise me, DIY Writers, that you’re going to try. If you read this blog, if you’ve grabbed my ebooks, if you buy A Writer’s Bucket List — do something. When you leave the computer or put down your Kindle, or switch off your phone, make your next step count.
Ignore your fantasies and your fears, and write the first line of a story. Ignore your stress and your fatigue, and take a walk in a new neighborhood. Ignore your obligations for just a moment, and take a step forward towards your dream.
And, please, tell me about it, so I know these words aren’t going to waste! What step are you taking today to move forward on your journey?