a few days ago, i listened to a commencement speech given by a writer and it has motivated me to make good art. (my thanks to ran liu for sending the link along, and always always being so supportive of my work)

a couple months ago, i embarked on what i thought would be a many month long journey of head down writing. i was going to write a script for a film that would capture the most beautiful and heart-wrenching moments of a romance that i had experienced first hand or,..first heart. (..oh god, yes. that was mountains of cheeeese unecessary but i had to. not true, i wanted to.)

it was a love that had never really ended and so one that i could never really let go of. i knew i needed to do something with this experience that had become the pinnacle, the definition of my capacity for love, for taking a chance.

i knew because more than a year after the last time i had spent with him, i still experienced moments, songs, movie credits rolling, that would strike me, just fucking hit me in the face. the floodgates were wrecked, useless. i'd sit there and the tears would just stream and stream, they wouldn't stop, and my breathing would just be something i could hear but have absolutely no control over. it was almost a heaving, a breathlessness, and my heart would just throb, i mean, it was embarrassing, because it was just such an extreme outpour of emotion triggered by the chorus of someone like you, or the last scene fading into the rolling credits of something borrowed. and there were too many reasons why i shouldnt be this emotional, and only one reason why i should.

and then the scenes would flash through my mind. our first kiss on my rooftop under a blanket we had brought up to keep warm. and our last kiss on the tube on my way to the airport. and every moment in between, and the tears kept coming. and all the scenes eventually just became this big intangible feeling in my heart of something that amounted to a love that i still felt so strongly in the present. because the kind of love i experienced with him, wasn't a string of moments, it is forever.

that's how i know that if i don't do something with this, i'll regret it. it's not because i'm not over him, in fact, i have come to terms with our time together and that time being over, and treasure it so deeply, i am able to think about it with a smile 99% of the time, and i have even found myself ready to fall for other people, so that isn't it, or at least not completely. i find that i am dedicating my time to writing this story, not to purge myself of my attachment or feelings towards him, but simply, to write something beautiful, because it deserves to be written.

so, it will be done. but it won't be in the form of a script. i thought it would be this worthwhile challenge and i got some bomb.com advice from mr tim bathurst, but it just wasn't the right medium for me. i need to write in stream of consciousness, unstructured, i need to write not constrained by scenes and dialogue and parentheticals. so i'm going to write a letter, a Dear Mark, with no plan of actually sending it to the intended reader.

i'm excited to get working on this, to make good art, and to share it. i think it's especially critical i do it now, during a time when my life in taipei has become comfortable. i need to be reinvigorated!

i realize i've just really exposed how emotional i can get, but i have a feeling you all already knew i had that in me, so i'm going to try and end with a piece of wisdom that i hope will take a little attention away from all the emotion and may do you some good, too.

and this is not an original thought, but i'm going to say it like it is.

you can't make good art, without living life fully, unabashed, with everything that can be open, open, and ready to embrace all that comes in, even if you could get hurt and seriously fucked up, for real. (note: please do not do hard drugs or dangerous shit without wearing a helmet for the thrill). i adore this quote, because it's true and said so well.

The irony of commitment is that it’s deeply liberating — in work, in play, in love. The act frees you from the tyranny of your internal critic, from the fear that likes to dress itself up and parade around as rational hesitation. To commit is to remove your head as the barrier to your life.

– Anne Morriss

i'm committed to making good art.



Authorjustine lee