Sunday, March 29, 2009

More than 10 years ago...

Most people I know tend to yearn for their high school days.  In fact, most of the friends I have on Facebook from high school are busy putting pictures and our senior quotes up on the site for all of us to view.  Believe me, I do appreciate their effort.  I will probably do the same thing when I uncover those old photos that are buried somewhere in my (currently unused) scrapbook room/office.  Boy do I need to clean off that desk!

The thing is, as much as I miss those friends and can't wait to see them at some point (note to those of you in NoVA - let's actually plan something!) the era of my life that I yearn for is more recent.  Starting about 16 years ago I had an amazing opportunity - one very few people get.  I lived my dream.

In the late summer of 1993 I drove from VA to Los Angeles with barely more than my on again-off again boyfriend's address and $5000 in the bank.  Yep, more than most people who follow that dream, but barely enough to pay for two months worth of rent these days.  I worked hard and in less than 6 weeks was part of a production company creating a brand new show on MTV.  (Anyone out there remember "Dead at 21"?  Anyone?  If so, please let me know - it would be nice to know that SOMEONE watched it.)  I arrived in September and by December I was so broke I was eating ramen noodles once a day and paying for it with my credit card.

Yeah - that didn't work so well.  

I moved from the production company to the MTV Development office where I worked on "Dead at 21", "Singled Out" and a myriad of other pilots that didn't make it.  Whoops.  The world was just not ready for Jamie Kennedy yet - good news, they are now!  

I met a lot of amazing people and had some incredible experiences.  But mounting debt, family concerns and, let's face it, plain ole fear sent me running back across the country with barely more than a good-bye to a few people I worked with.  (Sorry about that, guys!)

Then I got to do it again - for more money, better position for me (Online Producer for Warner Bros. Online) and with friends already in place in a town I have a love-hate-love relationship with.  One more time I got to work in entertainment.  One more time family issues sent me back across the country in a very short period of time.  This time, though, I said good-bye and have tried to keep in touch with at least a few people.  See, I can learn lessons.

So, why am I bringing this up now?  Well, two reasons.  First - I have the music of the time on.  Music always brings back memories for me, sometimes really strong memories.  Guess MTV was a good place for me, hm?  Second - I am planning on doing some serious editing on the book this week.  The protagonist of the story followed her Hollywood dream as well, only she was far more successful than I ever was.  In other words - she actually sticks around LA rather than running and makes some money - even if she isn't in the line of work she dreamt of, she is in the field.  

The book is rather autobiographical in many ways.  I don't disguise that aspect.  The two main characters are my alter ego and her grandmother.  Guess what - the grandmother is pretty much the grandmother who died of cancer during my first tenure in LA.  The goal here isn't to disguise the fact that these two characters are based on real people.  (Pretty sure I am ok with showing me and my dead grandmother - well, to be blunt, she is dead.)  Rather, the goal is to create a good story around both of us.  I think I've done that, and once I edit it I am planning on having a few people read it to make sure I accomplished that goal.  

Then its off to submissions and more rejections than I have ever had in my life until, hopefully, I find that one place that will be a home to Sarah and Estelle.  (I'm Sarah.)

Wish me luck!!! 

No comments: