Reach For The Top

Try. Just try. You may not always succeed. You may even fail more than you succeed. But it is in the trying that you gain insight into who you are and what you can become. The above quote is by writer Louisa May Alcott, whose most famous novel is Little Women.

My highest aspirations are plenty. I want to grow as a writer and not just settle for second best. I want to be the best son, brother and friend I can be to the people in my life; to offer hope to anyone reading this, that life often can throw us some nasty curve balls.   But we must all strive not to live in despair, and look up at the sky at the beauty around us.

I find myself in a bit of rut today. Just got back a result from one of my scripts that I was hoping for better news. Lately I’ve been feeling a lack of motivation which leads to uninspiring thoughts…writing.. etc… I’ve just begun a new screenplay, and like any writer out there knows, beginning oftentimes is a daunting task. Crippling doubt can lead to inactivity. I find each script I write, I expect more of myself so the weight of producing something of quality pricks at me …like the prickly weeds in a vegetable garden. I grow a vegetable garden and I constantly have to tend to it otherwise the weeds take over.

Is this you today?   Are you feeling the prick of weeds? Don’t allow them to overcome you. Get to those weeds, pull them out, throw them away and then get to the good stuff – the vegetables. Cultivate life.   For me, that means getting up everyday and somehow facing that blank screen, no matter the negative voices.   Some weeds are nasty and can really overtake your garden if you are not diligent. On this day, wherever you find yourself, don’t be afraid to get dirty and dig deep.

We are all in this together; some of us are further along then others. But don’t kid yourself, all of us are human – we share that.   Writer Anne Lamott puts it eloquently:

Everyone is screwed up, broken, clingy and scared, even the people who seem to have it most together. They are much more like you than you would believe, so try not to compare your insides to other people’s outsides. It will only make you worse than you already are.

Don’t look at other people’s wonderful gardens and be envious, instead, bask in it, appreciate it and then get to work on yours.   Make it a first place garden that people will one day admire.   You can be a great example and give someone else the little nudge they need.

My dream is to one day be on a movie set and see my words come to life.  On days when I feel down, I will look up and believe in those hopes and no matter what, follow where they lead. This is why I’m constantly looking to improve my writing by sending it out. Right now, my newest script, The Living Water is in the following contests/fellowships:








I’ve already heard back from Script Pipeline and have not advanced in that one. That pricked me this week, but as all writers know, don’t take it personally. It can (and is) a subjective business. The faster you can turn the page, the better.

Speaking of turning pages, the re-write of my play ANIMAL is complete. Excited to share this and feel this is my best draft yet. My hope is within the next year ANIMAL will come to life on stage.

And finally, one last quote from Anne Lamott that made me smile…maybe it’ll do the same for you:

You own everything that happened to you.   Tell your stories.
If people wanted you to write warmly about them, they should have behaved better.






  1. This is great advice and we sometimes need reminders exactly like these to move forward and to accept that rejection is definitely a part of the creative industry!

  2. Linda Lyons says:

    Hey Romeo – loved your description of the garden, the constant need to care for it, the importance of not being envious of someone else’s garden, but appreciate it, and then get back to work on our own. We should make the success of others, which is usually the result of their hard work, a motivating force to get ourselves going.

    So happy you have The Living Water script in a number of contests. I’m anticipating it will do well.

  3. Karen Coles says:

    Hi Romeo, Praying for encouragement and determination for you. Here is another story of motivation –
    you may be aware of it already. An excerpt from Newsweek –
    “In 1978, Michael Jordan was just another kid in the gym, along with 50 or so of his classmates, trying out for the Emsley A. Laney High School varsity basketball team. There were 15 roster spots. Jordan—then a 15-year-old sophomore who was only 5’10” and could not yet dunk a basketball—did not get one. His close friend, 6’7” sophomore Leroy Smith, did. The team was in need of his length. “It was embarrassing not making the team,” Jordan later said. He went home, locked himself in his room and cried.

    Then he picked himself up and turned the cut into motivation. “Whenever I was working out and got tired and figured I ought to stop, I’d close my eyes and see that list in the locker room without my name on it,” Jordan would explain. “That usually got me going again.”

    I hope this is helpful in some small way.

  4. Josie Beylerian says:

    Every day is a brand new day. You start over or continue from where you left off. The challenge is to stick to your convictions and look up to new ideas. The only way to improve your writing is to keep at it.

  5. Creating stories is like raising children; they’re always challenging us, sometimes to breaking point. But we can’t take it personally because it’s their nature. It’s their way of maturing. Love. Be patiently persistent. Faith. You have these qualities my friend.

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