Success lies not in starting, but in completing and THEN moving past completion rapidly.
Here’s how to do it…
When we go on any creative journey, those first few steps, once we commit and take them, can be exciting and exhilarating.
Massive leaps are made rapidly. New insights are made. Unleashed creativity flows out of us and it’s dizzying. Everything feels like it’s clicking and coming together…
It feels right and good, it’s EVERYTHING we knew writing should be like.
And then, sooner or later, we hit a plateau.
The momentum slows. Cracks start to show. Doubts creep in. Rejection messages show up. Sometimes we are left feeling rejection out of silence as people don’t even respond. And the feedback. Urghhh. Oh no, there’s a project just like mine gone into production. We didn’t even place anywhere in that competition…
And it’s on these plateaus that most people give up.
The plateau can feel like a long a and unfruitful walk, with no progress creatively or professionally. It’s like that scene in a horror film where the group is walking in the woods only to return to where they began. Literally walking in circles.
Here’s what you should know.
On this plateau,. the herd is thinning.
The weaker minded and less committed among us are now considering giving up.
It’s too hard. It’s becoming clear that some writers lack the grit to continue. That’s cool and we should wish them well as they choose a new adventure.
But is that you?
Many of us will continue to struggle across this plateau by attempting lots of different strategies, effectively failing repeatedly until the right mix of timing, strategy and relationships manifest the result we need. All of course needs massive energy, digging deep, finding time, never losing hope…
Success here might be the time you finally get an agent, or you get optioned and go into production.
And blast off…!
You enter a new phase of rapid and immersive learning. The old plateaus is WAY WAY WAY behind and below you….
A new adventure opens up, new worlds, new people, new challenges… It’s exhilarating.
But of course in time and after this experience, we soon begin to master this new game and hit another plateau.
We are not where we were, but the feeling is all too familiar.
Once again the herd thins even more and we re-start the process of finding what works by trying all manner of new ideas.
This is how careers are created, forged out of massive and repeated failure and hard won truths.
I have done it myself.
But I have also learned that there are other ways too.
Faster ways. Less painful ways. Less costly ways.
If you are open to it, and not everyone is, you can accelerate across the plateau and jump onboard the rocketship to the next level.
The first and essential thing to really get is… When on the plateau, don’t give up. Never give up. As Churchill famously said, ‘If you’re going through hell, keep going.’ Most people are tourists in their own personal Hell, taking selfies, and sharing on Facebook about how awful it is. Some can get a huge amount of significance from this and in the short term that will make them feel better and that’s good. The key is to NEVER to make this place your home. Pass through. Rapidly. Success will never be found by looking downward. Others, consider this place a competitive sport and it consumes them, the problem AND solution always being someone else’s fault and someone else’s responsibility. The impact on their lives and career in the long term is devastating.
Second thing… Know that the herd is thinning. Your competitors (who are really your support network and collaborators) are rising, leaving behind the tourists who don’t have the grit to keep going… tough love I know. But success is WAY less about talent and more about courage and tenacity. As well as a great deal of cleaver strategies and inspired action. Align yourself with the peers who are rising rapidly and consciously build your peer group around you. Success is very rarely chance.
And perhaps the most important point… In that moment when, in your heart, mind and body you know it’s time to give up. Don’t. Know this deep inside.
Victory is close.
Grit your teeth, fix your gaze to the horizon where the adventure lies, turn to your peers and let them know you are pushing through (they will rally and help), and fucking keep going… KEEP GOING!
If you want a theory for this, try a well established one.
Darwinian natural selection.
This is about survival of the fittest as defined by character, mind, spirit, tenacity, peer group, vision, strategy…
And if you have read this far, if this is resonating, it’s time for you ARISE and take full responsibility. I believe in you because I believe in EVERYONE when they show up with courage in their heart.
It’s time for you to climb the ladder to the next stage of your career. And if you want to share that journey with 28 writers, all of whom are at this same crossroads, writers who will become friends for life, then you should consider the upcoming Talent Campus.
Talent Campus is an extraordinary immersive screenwriting course that straps booster rockets to your creative soul, sets the sights on the stars and offers you the big red button to blast off. YOU have to show up. YOU have to press it. YOU have to hold on!
I have never worked harder to create something as magical, transformative and creatively elevating as the Talent Campus.
And I invite you to join me and 28 other writers onto this journey that will change EVERYTHING. Forever.
If the time is right for you… Apply.
That version of you is waiting for you on the other side. And I cannot wait to meet them.
Yes it’s scary. But so is another year (or three more likely) on the plateau.
And there is genuine risk of abandoning the journey when on the plateau. It’s like the second act of our scripts where it’s so easy to lose focus, direction and energy.
We need our tribe around us. And you will build one at the Talent Campus.
Applications close at MIDNIGHT on May 6th (extended from May 1st as TC 7.0 dates moved).
Good luck with your writing and I will race you to the Oscars red carpet!