The Project Pileup
Ever since I really dedicated myself to PoPS, I haven’t had the slow-burn of new project inspiration happen to me. Previously, before there was an audience or a years-spanning storyline in my life, I’d be between projects and slowly the next thing would form in my mind. A comedy about a serial killer living with two girls; work on it for an intense period of time, finish it, not know how to get it out to people, and then sit around. Then I’d think, a girl who’s just murdered her boyfriend starts to hear a bunch of inanimate objects talking her through her mental collapse and then she has to hide the murder from an unexpected visitor; work on it, finish it, sit around. Then, two different parties are stalking the same girl over different motivations and they collide without the girl every knowing about the craziness around her; work on it, finish it, sit around. That’s just how it works. Something catches your fancy and you see where it takes you. If the PoPS audience didn’t show up, I’d probably be a few projects down the line by now, but people were finally interested in seeing how far one of these stories could go. So I just dedicated myself to that and I haven’t looked up for a while. Over the last few weeks, as I’ve been working on these non-PoPS projects, a couple of story sparks have been developing. I think it’s because both of these side things I’ve been doing are deeply rooted in busywork with absolutely no need for creative focus or energy, so my mind wanders as my hands do the edits.
Back around Halloween I got an idea for a twisted little horror short. I’ve been a fan of horror movies for a long time—that seems painfully apparent to me after perusing my earlier projects up there—and after a brief foray into making a horror flick that ended up shelved, I climbed off the horror hobby horse and headed across the genre playground onto the super powers swing set. And it’s been great. But during this hiatus, that little horror kernel blew up into a full-blown outline and I think it could be a really cool short. Unlike my other horror stuff, there’s nothing funny about it. It’s dark, really twisted, and horrifying, with a completely fresh look at villainy. And then it got me excited again. Excited in that “new idea” way. I get excited about every episode of PoPS in that “another layer” way, with the satisfaction of seeing more of the story realized and coming together. But nothing beats that “new idea” excitement. I just don’t know when I would do this horror thing. And the idea of sitting down and watching it with my mother is absolutely unthinkable. Never ever. Maybe I’ll just write it as a short story between PoPS episodes.
Two more things on the new-things horizon. This next week is the annual Project For Awesome on YouTube, where every willing YouTuber makes a video for a charity they care about and YouTube and the Vlog Brothers community promotes as many of them as they can. This year, mine is for the organization A Safe Place, which helps women get themselves and their children out of abusive situations. Also, starting in January, I’m going to teach a class at Columbia College Chicago called Video for Internet and Mobile TV. It’s about becoming a part of internet communities and building a social media base. It’s going to be really cool.
Thanks for reading.