I'm not sure if anyone is reading these weekly blogs, and I've not exactly been promoting them, so I doubt there's a steady readership. However, in many ways, that's not been the point really for me.
I started back in February when struck with pretty bad writer's block, finding myself at a creative loss. So, I did what everyone says to do in that situation: just do stuff. Write things, brainstorm nonsense, film crap. Don't filter yourself or worry about whether it's good, just get the flow going, and something will eventually come. Creativity really requires the right mindset, and just like any skill, it can get rusty if left un-exercised.
I would say this blog is sort of working, I've not felt so held back, even if there's not an amazing stream of content yet. At the very least, it's been psychologically boosting, and those benefits will really come through in my work eventually.
Similarly, I've been putting out 3 YouTube videos a week, just for the sake of doing them. They've been particularly fun to do, and some of them even have some semblance of humour! You can check out some of the random nonsense and doughnut reviews here.
It's definitely a piece of advice I will continue to heed, and also pass on: just create! Even if it takes a few months to get something really worthwhile, you have to keep that part of your brain active.
Recently, a video on my facebook page has experienced a bit of mini-virality, getting over 125k views as it stands. It was a short mockumentary about Salisbury and the Russian Spy Drama that's dominated the news, and I just shot it on my phone, going round the city for an hour with my friends, Tom and Sam, filming me. An enjoyable way to spend my free periods, and indeed I was quite happy with the final product, but the response has been far beyond anything I imagined. To reach such a large audience and get so many lovely comments about it was really cool, and even more impressively I actually got some hate!
Now it may seem odd to be impressed with that, but I've found it enthralling to reach enough people and make enough of an impact to receive internet abuse. Most of the comments (which has literally only been about 20 or so) have gone along the lines that I am a "twat", "unfunny dickhead", and even a "wannabe that should crawl back up [my] own asshole". How anyone can draw a conclusion like that from one 5 minute video is beyond me, but I'm loving it all the same. I've irked something enough to justify writing out an actual comment, I feel validated.
Online hate is something I just don't have the mindset for, I, and most reasonable people, just mutter it to ourselves and scroll past, but to get a large enough pool of people to be abused is to me, an experience to relish. At last, I am an "unfunny dickhead", and I've never been prouder!
Just a brief entry this week, as I'm still recovering from some flu / cold / other Lemsip treatable ailment. It's been a fairly dull week because of the illness, and also quite a miserable time for me because of the disgusting Lemsip taste.
However, I've very much enjoyed the pretty snow, and all the pictures online; watching my friends through social media windows, like a wistful granny gazing out of her retirement home window towards the adjacent park. Maybe that's more creepy an image than I intended, but either way the fun of the snow has definitely been experienced on my part, even if only second-hand.
Unfortunately, these last few days have also been riddled with first-hand bad snow experience, having had one eventful trip in the car take 3.5 hours longer than it should've done. It was an annoyingly necessary trip, although on reflection I could have just let my Dad drive it on his own. Though, if I had done that, my amazing physical prowess wouldn't have been on hand to push cars off the road and up hills (a surprisingly fair few number of times).
Caution should obviously be taken in bad conditions, but when it's icy/snowy, there are always far too many drivers going too slowly, and getting stuck on hills. Where we could afford to stop and help we did, but sometimes, we had our own upwards force to worry about first.
This is just a bit of a ramble blog, but if I don't force myself to keep writing, I just won't write. So that's pretty much it for this stream of consciousness, but here's a contrived conclusion for y'all:
Go careful and take it easy, but don't lose your momentum x
I saw the fantastic Paul Pirie headline Wimborne Comedy Club tonight, and he just completely smashed the room; it was mesmerizing to watch and so so funny as well. Beforehand he talked about his experiences in comedy and joked about me being only 18, and without directly offering any unsolicited advice (The sign of a classy act), I just felt like I was learning so much. Not only from his performance, but from his attitude and the way he interacted with audience members, acts, and the promoter. Undeniably, this man is an experienced pro.
It got me thinking a lot about my own youth, and relative inexperience. Life has been a bit of a whirlwind the last year or two, and I've not really had a chance to properly reflect on the important things I've learned. This will probably sound wanky, but every experience has been invaluable in some way, and one of the things I love about comedy is rubbing shoulders with the long-timers, and just growing as a comic because of it. There's this idea about the 'passion of youth', but I've seen comics 50, 60+ with just pure joy in their eyes as they perform, it's not a young man's game despite what some bitter comedians on Facebook like to rant. Comedy in its purest form is a level playing field, which lets anybody, from any race, sex, gender or age, just express themselves through a mic for however long.
Naturally, there's some politics bollocks regarding the 'industry' and making a living/making a name, but at the TRUE heart of it, it's just people and microphones.
Maybe that sounds even more wanky, but I feel it's been an important thing for me to realize and recognize with more experienced comics, that the love of the art form should always be the driving force. It's easy to get caught up in success, or failure, or other acts, but the wise and experienced will always say bollocks to that nonsense. Get on with your own thing and enjoy it, and that's probably a good mantra for most things in life as well!