[THREE CENTS] What Now?

The End Graphic from Casablanca
Hopefully not really

If there ever was a point where a question felt most appropriate, it’s today. What now?

Not where are you going to find toilet paper, or how best to hide from your children, or whether you’re more of a “summer” or “fall” mask.

No, the question is – what are you going to write next?

If you’re like me, you’ve got a million ideas for various screenplays, novels, shorts, comics, webisodes… maybe even blog posts.

In fact, I’ve got them everywhere. There’s dozens of loglines spread across several docs on my laptop, a handful of started-and-abandoned treatments, another bunch of thoughts on scrap paper, receipts, and coffee shop napkins. Not to mention the notes on my phone.

Ideas are cheap, though. They don’t really have value until you make something of them.

But if you have a dizzying number of starting points, how do you decide which one to bring to fruition next?

Hopefully, the potential end of the world has given you some impetus to think about those ideas and realize you’re probably not going to get to all of them before you shuffle off your mortal coil. Or even die.

Maybe imagine yourself on that hypothetical death bed (this is fun, right?!). What’s the idea you’re disappointed you never worked on?

I was at a recent Q & A with Steven Spielberg where he was asked how he decides which film to direct next when he has numerous projects in development.

The answer was, basically, the one that haunts him. That he can’t get out his mind. The one he dreams about when he’s sleeping and then daydreams about when he’s awake.

Does one of your ideas stand out above the rest? Consume you?

No? If they’re all neck-and-neck, I’d definitely lean towards the most commercial one.

Barring that, you could always throw a dart, I guess.

There’s no one single way to decide what now. Though obviously, if you’re a writer, it needs to be done. Hopefully, again and again.

Whatever your method, a virtual quarantine seems like a good time to give it some thought.

Thankfully, I feel fine. For now.

Remember, be safe and smart. We need to be around to make as many of these ideas happen as we can.

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