Fly On The Wall

I had a really awesome, super cool, downright amazing experience the other week. I got to read stage directions for a brand-spanking-new, first time being read aloud, star-studded workshop of a new musical. It was fantastic.  I got to reconnect with a few creative professionals I’ve worked with in the past, and meet new awesome people who are working at one of the highest levels in the industry. I am so grateful to this experience. To be honest, 16-year-old Brock would shit his pants if he realized the awesome stuff he’d be doing at 23.

However, after being a fly on the wall, I want more. Reading stage directions is great from an observational standpoint, but creatively it provide very little juice. And I want to create. I want to act. I want to go for it. I want to make great things and terrible things and awesome boundary-pushing things and indie things and commercial things and beautiful things.

And I had to stop for a second and think…why am I not doing this? Why am I not attempting to do this?

Our old friend and foe, Fear, motherfucking Fear.

I’m doing too much or I’m not doing enough or I’m too eager or I don’t want it enough or they can sense I’m too desperate. I’m not writing enough. I’m not acting enough. I’m not auditioning enough. I’m not meeting new people enough.

You are enough. You are where you’re supposed to be. So create something, and share it with someone. That’s all you can do. One motherfucking thing.

“Don’t lament so much about how your career is going to turn out. You don’t have a career. You have a life. Do the work. Keep the faith. Be true blue. You are a writer because you write. Keep writing and quit your bitching. Your book has a birthday. You don’t know what it is yet.” – Cheryl Strayed.

That’s one of my favorite quotes. Live it. Love it. Chill the fuck out (that’s most to myself, not you). Enjoy your life. Don’t overthink it. Greatness will come when it’s supposed to. Just be ready for it.

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Motor Homemade

Have you ever been so proud of your friends that you could burst? That’s how I feel about Mary Kenny.

That mustachioed french man in the background is Mary Kenny...I mean, Pierre.

That mustachioed french man in the background is Mary Kenny…I mean, Pierre.

Mary and I knew each other peripherally for a year, when we were both at Williamstown Theatre Festival, before we really became friends. Two years ago, by sheer destiny, the summer camp Mary was working at lost their only male counselor and needed an immediate replacement. Mary recommended me, though we had only spoken MAYBE twice up at Williamstown when we were working on the 2012 Lip Dub Video (Still the best one, and Mary’s handiwork). I, being the lover of spontaneity that I am (and also because I was fed up with New York), said YES and left my job to join the wonderful people at Camp Stanley. The people I met at Camp Stanley are some of my favorite humans on this entire planet.

So I owe a lot to Mary, and since then I have gotten to know her very well. Our first summer at Camp Stanley, she described herself as being on a “dream hiatus” instead preferring to help other people with their dreams at the moment, while she figured out what she wanted to do. Mary’s artistic mind knows no limits. Whether it’s building sets, doing graphic design, or even teaching kids, she brings ease and a confidence that I so admire. Not to mention a genuine selflessness and willingness to help, no matter what the project. Plus, she’s a total badass.

See? What a badass.

See? What a badass.

Mary, like myself, has never really cared for the pace of life in New York City. She’s lived here for a few years, pounding the pavement, making her way, and wrangling some awesome jobs while she’s at it. However, her creativity and unique sensibility could not be satiated by this city’s sometimes underwhelming lack of opportunities for creative people. So Mary did what any sensible artist would do.

Mary bought an RV.

Mary's Motor

Mary Kenny is going to travel across the country in an ’84 Winnebago. She’s going to keep her creative clients in New York City AND she’s going to go across the country helping friends and strangers with their artistic pursuits. If you’re looking for a creative mind, she’s your lady and she’s for hire. Mary is turning her dream hiatus into a dreamy adventure. Check it out here:

http://motorhomemade.com/

Be sure to follow Mary’s adventure online. She has a blog! I’m sure I won’t be the last person to cover this great adventure.

She’s making a bold move. She’s taking a risk. She’s having the adventure of a lifetime. I think more of us should too.

The Attitude of Gratitude #1

I have been writing a lot lately. Like a lot, a lot. Aside from this blog, I’ve been working on creative projects, and just generally writing for fun. I’ve also been attempting to practice gratitude for the wonderful things in my life.

So I just wanted to say, too all the people who encouraged me to start writing again and who continue to keep encouraging me to write, thank you.

Any creative endeavor, no matter how isolating or singular it may seem, is not accomplished without a small army of people. Even if you said to me once, offhandedly “Hey, I like your blog.” Thank you. I have kept going because of tiny words of encouragement, and I will keep going because of the momentum I have accrued through your words.

Thanks friends.

Slow Your Roll, Bro

If you’ve had your heart broken in the last year, if you’ve hit an emotional low, if you didn’t know how you would proceed, then good for you. You’re human. Congratulations. I’m right there with you.

Take your time. Feel the feelings that you need to feel. Cry on the floor. Eat a lot of shitty food. Be a mess. Then, when you’re ready, get up. Get going. And start again.

But only when you’re ready.

Take your time.

We live in a city, in a world, of instant gratification. Suppressing emotion for the sake of productivity used to work, but I don’t think that’s the way the world is anymore. We’re moving towards a society that values each individual experience as a part of the collective whole, which means that your life is just as valid as mine. Embrace that. Always move forward, but recognize that your experience, good or bad, is yours. Own it.

Healing doesn’t happen overnight. It happens over months and years.

Take your time. You’ll be better for it.

And then go be awesome.

Short Blog

Ugh I just want to write a short blog for today, but I cannot. It’s just not happening today. Sometimes I’m creatively stuck and nothing comes out. I have nothing worthwhile to say. I’m writing though, and that’s enough. Even if nothing worthwhile has been said, something has been said and that makes it worthwhile.

Maybe we just put something on the page, even if it fails to meet our impossibly high standards, and then maybe tomorrow we try again. Get through the day, persevere, and try again. Lather, rinse, repeat.

You can talk, talk, talk, You can bicker, bicker, bicker. You can talk all you wanna, But it’s different than it was.

(10 points to Gryffindor for whoever can guess where the title is from.)

One morning, a few months ago, I was going through a lot of shit. I got coffee with my dear friend Allison. I was talking, complaining, and lamenting my lot in life, my post-relationship woes, and general unhappiness with the present moment. She talked some too, but mostly it was me jabbering on and on about how my life was inadequate and had failed to live up to my expectations as a 23-year old. Allison was kind and listened to all of my bitching. Allison is really great like that, she is just there when you need her, regardless of what she may be going through in her own life. It was a good chat (from my perspective) but then I made a really funny comment, well it’s funny in retrospect.

“I’m really trying to work more on listening.”

Allison straight up laughed in my face. I was shocked. Had I not been listening? Had we both not shared our feelings? I had A LOT of problems at the time, but didn’t I listen to what she had to say?

…oh, wait. maybe not.

Listen guys, if you have to ask yourself or even think about if you’re a good listener, you’re probably not listening enough.

We talk a lot these days, “we” meaning people in general. There is a lot of noise all over the place. It’s easy to get lost in your problems, in this idea of the self. Let’s step back for a moment and realize that every single person’s experience is valid, and attempt to understand someone else’s perspective.

I hope you have friends like Allison who are there to listen to your problems when you really need them to. I also hope you have friends like Allison who are willing to call you out so you too can attempt to grow.

Let’s talk a little less and listen a little more.