A Very Special Anniversary
As my social media feed reminded me this morning, back on April 8th, 2013, I won a daily award on a writing site for a monologue script - "The Monologue of the Evil Minion". It began as an improvised video a couple of years before that: dressing up in a domino mask and cape to make my friends laugh. Later on, I wrote the thing up to share on writing sites. I created other monologues as these "supervillain's minions", performed them at open mic nights. But the original script winning that daily award was one of the proudest moments of my life.
From that success, I built this eccentric little universe up further. In time, one script grew into a full plotted series. It went so far, I even got some friends together to consider making a radio adaptation (as well as series of their own works). But, like so many ambitious projects in one's youth, it all fell apart. Then, certain friends in that group went on to hurt me so badly, I had to cut them out of my life completely.
Happy dreams became painful memories. The whole project felt tainted. A monument to my own failure, a reminder that my stories would never be loved, that I lacked the talent/time/drive/insert noun here to ever even get published, never mind succeed. My confidence in so many aspects of my life was utterly destroyed. And as a lifelong anxiety and depression sufferer, it was just another crushing blow from a broken brain that seemed to deal out so many to me.
I couldn't face it. I put the scripts aside unfinished - left them alone to gather metaphorical dust... and in the process, almost gave up writing forever.
Now, some years later, I'm thankfully in a much better place, and I feel that I still want to tell this story - to have fun in this universe again. I've changed a few characters around, made tweaks here and there, but I'm giving the whole thing a second chance as my Camp NaNoWriMo project this April under a new title: One in a Minion.
I may not meet my word goal, but that's OK - I'm having fun. I've also come to terms with the fact that I may never succeed as a writer. Right now, I'm content sharing my work online rather than seeking out publication: it's still too great a leap for me. People think I'm humble-bragging when I talk about how much I appreciate comments and feedback, or can think it's odd when I refer to fellow writers as a community, but I mean it all completely sincerely. Your words mean a lot to me, and I cherish your support and engagement.
Sorry to go all psychoanalyst on you, but I think, deep down, that's all I - the weird geeky kid in school and beyond, always struggling to make friends - ever really wanted from this endeavour. Not great success, but to find like-minded, supportive people I could relate to, and to bring smiles to the faces of others through my work.
Eight years trying to tell this story. It may yet take me eight years more. But if I stay positive, build up faith in myself, and with your support, I have a very good chance of crossing the line.