Catching Up


I don't always have deadlines, but when I do, I prefer to procrastinate.

I don’t always have deadlines, but when I do, I prefer to procrastinate.

After spending last weekend doing a speed filmmaking competition I found myself, today, spending a lot of time playing catch up. Considering that my summer began with no formal filmmaking-related plans, it has certainly begun to fill up quickly with opportunities.

A few weeks ago I was asked to edit a fellow graduate student’s thesis film since I didn’t have any other obligations on my schedule. It was an opportunity that I was pleased to seize, but which represents a significant time commitment and will keep me busy for the rest of the summer. On the closet door beside my desk is a printout of my schedule to remind me of my deadlines lest I decide to spend my time surfing Facebook instead of focusing on the editing. Or, you know, taking a weekend off for a 51 hour film competition.

This morning, therefore, I saw the Curmudgeonly Lion out the door and then dedicated myself to the work of grinding out an “assembly” of the film. To my relief and satisfaction, the assembly came together smoothly and with plenty of time to backup, mixdown, export and drive to my meeting scheduled with the director so that she could take the first look at it. (Likewise to my relief and satisfaction, she was pleased with what she saw.)

So my summer is suddenly very full and on the verge of becoming even more so, but I’m pleased that I am able to keep busy and to keep in some kind of structured routine in order to stay productive. I am also finding that, having just the right amount of stress and deadlines keeps me in an unusually creative mindset. Last week I mentioned the fact that the stress of the approaching film competition had inspired me to sit down and write nearly sixteen pages of prose in a form of highly creative procrastination. It was a trend that I indulged in for as many days as I could because I was certain that as soon as the competition was done that the pressure would be gone and the impulse to procrastinate would devolve back into Facebooking.

So far, I have been able to keep the habit going. The prose is still bad, and probably getting worse, but the impulse to sit down and put pen to paper is still strong. We will see how well it weathers the holiday weekend.

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~ by Gwydhar Gebien on July 1, 2014.

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