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I live in Brooklyn, NY and I love it here.  I came here for my career in 2009 and haven't once looked back. 

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Writer's block...

I lied. I have time to blog this week. And lots on my mind. That doesn't mean I shouldn't be sleeping though. I had a good run of it yesterday, managed to sleep at 10pm...but only by getting in bed at 830. I napped today so I'll have no such luck with that tonight. And I've accepted it. So I cooked dinner while polishing off the Ren and Stimpy DVD extras on the DVD I got from Netflix, showered and now I sit, drinking a beer and typing this blog.

Tomorrow, Karishma's and I are hanging out for the first time since she got back from Greensboro and then afterward maybe I'm meeting the filmmakers, hopefully, because we didn't get a chance to meet today...might even have to be Thursday. We haven't square that away. I'll have to do all this sans nap. It's strange. I know if I put in the effort to try and get on a decent sleep schedule (all I would have to do is resist napping and go to sleep ridiculously early one day and then repeat every day this week) but half of me has this aversion to doing so. Not just because it's comfortable to nap but I feel like it'll really mess me up or something. I'm more than likely wrong but for some reason, yes, I'm not in bed when I could be reading and winding down. But yes, things on my mind, oh yeah, I was getting to that.

On the topic of music, I think I'm having a bit of writer's block. Granted, I have been writing for these films but stuff like that is easier than writing my own stuff. You have a motivation to write (not like a deadline, I mean like you have something to inspire your creativity). It's easy to score to a picture because you already have what emotion the music should evoke (or rather assist in evoking) and you already know (most of the time) what the director wants, more or less. In writing my own stuff, there's a whole slew of questions that no one can answer for me and I must answer myself. For instance, what is my impetus, who is my audience, why am I writing?

Answering these questions can be like answering what is the meaning of life. The answer is important to everybody but in the end, it has to be your own answer or it won't be real.

It's not like I don't have ideas though. I have a myriad of unfinished ideas. Big ideas. Ideas with orchestras and me conducting, ideas with poly synths and guitar tracks, drum tracks and bass lines. Melodies. Chord progressions. I've talked about this before in a prior blog about compositional sophistication but making all those ideas into music is the hard part. If being a composer was sitting around improvising all day long and not writing a single note down, I'd have it made. If I had software that could take my every thought and turn it into a recording and then just go ahead and market it for me, I'd also have it made. But no one has written such a piece of software, and I hope they never do. It's already too easy to create music. My problem is, and I'm going to name it here in the hopes that that will help me to solve it, that I'm building up in my mind the actual process of composing, from writing down the initial ideas to sculpting it all into something coherent and consistent, to the point that sitting down to do the first bit is so harrowing I almost can't bear it unless I have a good three to four hours of time to devote to it. And I rarely have that until my days off when I'm exhausted from work. Excuses excuses. Shut up Tim.

I know what I need to do. I need to be okay first with doing things one thing at a time. Sit down and write down, for my own benefit, the steps that I need to go through to take an idea and launch the process. Then when I sit down it's not about getting the whole composition completed in one sitting but about singular tasks. My composition teacher had a word for this, well two words: compositional plan. Sounds ridiculously rudimentary and painfully obvious. Because it is. You can't build a building without drawing up a schematic, or several. You can't write a piece of music without first structuring it and taking it one step at a time. It's just as important as it would be if you were building something that people will eventually live and/or work in to take your time. Not that your piece of music could collapse on top of the people listening to it and kill them...I should hope not.

Anyway, point being, I think, when I'm done with this next film, I'm going to really sit down and plan out every one of these ideas I have and get going writing. It's time.

It's also time to sleep. Another long day of media ingest tomorrow. Good night.

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