I never thought I would do this, but decided it would be good to throw out some of my failure for the world to see. I start a lot of things, and while most of those beginnings have been lost to hard drive crashes and general laziness on my part, some have stuck around (mostly from the last two or so years). What follows will be a simple list of five of those projects that I began and for whatever reason completely gave up on. I have also decided to make my files (Microsoft Word documents, sorry) available through Dropbox via public links. I will try and follow each entry with whatever my memory can come up with for why I did abandon the project or what my general ideas concerning the project were.
1. The Half-Brain At Horseshoe Bend – 7,720 words, 31 pages – An odd title for a story about a woman who sees a ghost when she takes gingko biloba. Yes, I do know that is not in any way, shape, or form how that supplement works. This was done in sort of a Christopher Moore type of style, as I was hoping to build more characters and situations off the Horseshoe Bend community and creating off the wall, potentially supernatural events was just where my head was at the time. I gave up on it almost solely because I hated the husband’s Caddyshack-lite story and felt no desire to try to rewrite it into something better.
2. KnowHow – 4,674 words, 10 pages – The story of a brain implant that acts like a wi-fi portal to an endless array of information. No longer would trivial education be necessary, because thinking of a subject meant having access to all that could be known about the subject (so long as it was on whatever type of server I would have created to house such information). This was to be a low-key sci-fi mystery -ish story, with conspiracies and bizarre plots and wacky hi-jinks with some underlying message about the spread of information by way of teaching. It could have worked, but I started really feeling contrived and annoyed with how everything was moving, even if I really like some of the exposition I did early on.
3. For A Year- 1,415 words, 3 pages – I wanted to have someone retell the last year of their life to their friends at a party or some such. I never put a lot of thought into this one, but ENVE THIS is probably my favorite name for anything I’ve ever done ever. It should be a kickstarter or something, even though I have no artistic ability to make greeting cards work as a career occupation.
4. Specific Heaven – 4,245 words, 16 pages – my after-life story. Hints of Christopher Moore dashed in with Douglas Adams. I had absolutely no clue where I was going to go with the story or why. It just seemed like a good idea at the time. And when things like that happen, you just have to see where they take you.
5. Ups And Downs – 10,895 words, 60 pages – a screenplay of all things, unfinished but with a story I still would love to do and could easily see done by a filmmaker. A kid sits on a roof for a day, contemplating life and is visited by friends. Very Kevin Smith-ish in it’s execution, and possibly even in dialogue, but doubtful. I have no desire to read back over this, as it is years and years old at this point. I do know that I ground to a halt because I realized just how cliched and annoying my characters were getting, and possibly my dialogue too. I am never sure what is and isn’t good dialogue, but I really felt this was not it. Maybe I was wrong, but I highly doubt it.
I do happen to have a few more bits and pieces laying around, though I wish I had some of my really old stuff that I kinda sort maybe liked before I napalmed it in disgust with myself. Maybe in a few days or weeks I will simply explain those ideas, but without the lovely blue links to back them up. I feel so odd just throwing this all out there into the world for people to see, but maybe doing this will clear out that mental logjam and I’ll be able to concentrate more on the content I want to create in the future rather than what I failed at creating in the past. I hope you enjoy, or insert whatever emotion you like, honestly…
So it has been over a month since I got anything up here, mostly due to hand surgery and general real life intervention, but now I feel like I might have something at least semi-relevant to talk about. There is, depressingly enough for all the gurus out there, no one right way to live. Of course there are morally correct actions and ethically correct actions, but thanks to the loving randomness of reality it is impossible for everything to have a concrete step-by-step solution. Such is life.
I hate to have come upon this realization, because it means I have to try way harder just to make it through the day. It has created in me a pinch of uncertainty that makes general existence much more troubling. As an analyst, I like knowing that eventually I will come upon some kind of answer, or a string of questions tied together by lesser answers that will soon enough get me to The Answer. Random Existence has decided to throw a wrench into that idea and force me to understand just how unable I am to look into the future any farther than a few nanoseconds. One look into my past is a pretty good example at how bad I am at predicting my own path through life.
So, does this mean that I am living my life wrong? Maybe on some levels I am. Maybe one some levels absolutely everyone is. I have come to terms with the fact that it is hard to wrap one’s head around the idea that being 25 or 30 years old still puts you below the half-way point of your lifespan, statistically speaking. Everyone has goals, and a lot of them involve some sort of success at a place in their life where they will potentially get the most use of it. Nobody wants to find success and wealth and never get to wallow in it like a pig in a mud puddle. That’s just common sense. Am I doing life wrong because I haven’t found that success? Again, statistics would say that I am a normal everyday person, as the ratio of celebrity to normal is quite in favor of the normal. Am I doing life wrong because it bothers me that I could potentially not be successful in the ways I pine for? Depression is built on a foundation of this. Mid-life crises exist because people think they lived that first half of their life (which they usually only have real, honest control of just over half of) in a horribly messed-up fashion. Buying a motorcycle, speedboat, or supermodel might fix that! Or not. Happiness is as subjective as success. No one really needs success to be happy, but almost nobody would turn it down if it became an opportunity. I can say with no remorse that I equate the two way more than I should, but I have no one to blame for such a thought process occurring.
I may feel, wholeheartedly, that I have done things in my life that I could and usually do consider failures. I can go to sleep every night with that twinge of depression soaking into the back of my brain stem because I made a bad decision ten years ago and while I may have stopped feeling the effects of that decision nine and a half years ago my spirit is still telling me to dwell there because I have no idea if changing that one decision could have changed my entire life. This is some Mr. Destiny level stuff here. You hit that home run and you become the hero. It’s not hard to watch that film and wonder what actions in your past could have done completely different, and what sort of domino effect would transform your life for better or worse.
I might not have hit that home run. I might not have punched out Biff Tannen. I might not have caught that subway just in the nick of time. I might have gotten to that drug deal just a few seconds too late. Run, Run, the future is what you make of it, and no amount of doors getting in the way of your destiny will cause you to live life wrong. The only way to live your life is how you live it…maybe for better or maybe for worse, but never right or wrong. Always keep that in mind.