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🌱 Today is a significant day

🌱 Today is a significant day
By Sumeru Raut • Issue #17 • View online
Hi Friends,
Hope you are all continuing to stay safe.
Today marks an important day for me personally.
In September 2018, I sat by the shore of a quaint beach, looking into the distant waters of the North Atlantic ocean. I felt defeated by a project I was handling. My girlfriend was seated beside me. After keeping to myself for a while, I spoke up—"I think I want to write something on my own. I am done with this appeasing a client". She was supportive and encouraging, “You totally should”. I felt happy to say what I said and hear what I heard.
That was the day I made up my mind that I was going to write a screenplay. Up until then it felt like I had been banging my head up against a wall, trying to understand what path to take in my work, in life; meandering, taking up projects as they came—an odd documentary here, assisting on a TVC there. I thought this was the freelancer life—which it is—since I was not willing to be gainfully employed full-time. But I didn’t feel like I was going towards my goals. I didn’t really have a goal. I was doing one too many things and I didn’t know what to focus on, until I said the words—I want to write something.
This was two and a half years ago.
Shortly after making this decision, I enrolled myself in an excellent crash-course in screenwriting in 2019. Later, I watched countless videos on youtube about the craft, interviews of filmmakers and scrolled through r/screenwriting endlessly. I tried to read some books, particularly ‘The art of dramatic writing’ by Lajos Egri, never really reading it.
And I, thus, got into procrastination mode, finding one excuse after another and never really starting to write anything… until this week.
After last Sunday’s declaration, that I am going write a screenplay in public (an idea I had had since starting my blog), I set off to write this week and finally pressed publish today.
(It was so difficult to openly publish the screenwriting post. Oh my god! toughest since my first post.)
Even though what I have written is raw, really short, unformed, unfunny and is likely to be completely changed/discarded, I have gone from (to borrow Peter Thiel’s phrase) zero to one.
I have gone from not writing a screenplay to writing a screenplay. Writing a good screenplay is a matter of talent, perseverance and we shall find out what else; it is a journey that is 1 to n.
But not even trying is terrible. And so today’s step of merely starting is a very very small but a significant step for me; even if I have no idea why this took me two and a half years, I accept my journey.
In the past two years, there were long durations of time that I hopped on and off emotional roller coaster rides, until I learnt to not do that. One thing I have done in the past year and a half, is to cut myself off from everything that was a waste of my time. It was only then that my own bullshit became apparent to me, because I had finally stopped carrying others’.
Listening to my inner voice and forcefully keeping other voices at bay, led to me starting my blog and now working on a screenplay. Lastly, I’d like to thank the academy for this honour…
Hey, all I am saying is I am happy to have started and hope to keep going. OK?
Thank you for reading,
Sumeru.

✨ Make a Scene - Weekly Screenwriting
I’m naming this weekly screenwriting series Make a Scene. (Another pun. This guy. smh)
Early in the week, I thought long and hard wondering how to start writing—should I do a structure, an outline, cards?; I finally decided to just jump right in, although that is known to be a terrible method. But hey, we’ll find out.
✍️ My articles this week (10 mins)
❤️ Things I liked this week
  1. TV Show: I have been on a Phoebe Waller-Bridge marathon. I fell in love with Fleabag on first viewing and have been in awe of her writing and acting ever since. So, I binge watched Crashing on Netflix. It has PWB written all over it. She wrote it before Fleabag (and that is seen).
  2. Blog Post: An article by one of the most noble tech companies—Signal. Ads Instagram won’t show you
  3. Podcast: This podcast : Anna Codrea-Rado (Author and Journalist) talks to Ali Abdaal about writing, career & the changing nature of work. This 80+minute chat really resonated with me as a freelancer myself.
  4. YouTube Video: This beautiful video about the one thing that separates Indian cooking from all other cuisine, since I wrote about food for the first time this week.
Did you enjoy this issue?
Sumeru Raut

I am Sumeru. I am a filmmaker, musician and I write. I send this newsletter every Sunday with a round up of all the nonsense in my life. And I add interesting links to compensate for that. Sign up, it's free.

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