The Encampment Diaries – The Final Day


The Final Day

As I type this I’m sitting in an office that’s been my work for 4 months. Not long in the grand scheme of things, but for someone who works freelance it’s been as permanent as one can get. Even if it’s just 3 days a week.

The gig has given me some time away from other projects and helped me refocus my goals. And it’s why I’m writing this piece. It’s my final day at this office, and after this I intend to embark nearly completely on a project so vast and insane that most people try to get, say, a crew together. I have one person kindly drawing a few pieces of art. And one actor agreed to perform. It’s good. It’s all good.

I’m 28, and whilst that number’s not a big deal, the imposing nature of humanity’s stigma of the ‘30th birthday’ has got in my head, so I’ve figured I can feel a little better about things by simply making something happen. Alas in every walk I’ve taken, nobody comes together on my behest despite pleading, begging and being as nice as is humanly possible. So the idea of doing something gigantic and foolish mostly on my own is only scary insomuch as I am the be-all and end-all, there are no other reasons for something to be incorrect. I’ve done plenty of things that aren’t to what I’d want as standard quality, but I put the blame on others. Namely because others decided not to help out. Others suck.

So, what am I doing? Oh, boy, well, it’s dumb, and needs some context, because I’m narcissistic.

I’m a writer. I’ve written about films, I’ve written films, one side of this has been seen by people, the other doesn’t seem to get a ‘received’ email from close friends, let alone actual people. Back in the mid-noughties a video game came out called ‘The Movies’ which allowed you to make short films within the game’s world, a tycoon simulation of a movie studio where you choose actors, directors, writers, extras and…janitors. They had an online platform to directly post your creations, and let others watch, review, and in the forums, form a community. I had limited success in this because, at 15, I wasn’t great at getting people together or convincing people I had value to add, and my films didn’t help, they were a product of one person trying to make everything work. I’m hardly a jack of all trades.

I found a calling doing online radio, despite complete introversion, I slowly came out of my shell and found folks to spend time with, to have fun and to discuss the ways films work and play with form. This, along with college and university studies, helped evolve my abilities, however not with the introversion and the getting people together.

Between university and time of writing I’ve worked on 2 scripts that came to fruition. Through the guiding voice of others, with more outreach and confidence. But maybe less assurance on the material.

So before I hit that ‘landmark’ I want to build something based on a script I’ve written that is, quintessentially, my voice.

This is Encampment.

For the next few months I’m going to slowly build visuals, along with my sister-in-law who has kindly given her time and great talents to paint some images, as I gather a cast to perform the voices of my characters. Hoping by the end of July I’ll have an audio play mostly ready.

And from that, I intend to build a slight-movement animated feature. Not still images, but not carefully created-with-inbetweens animated film. I’m not insane nor talented.

But I can move images. As an editor, and a writer, I’m using the two skills I have to create a film, even without the usual elements.

Why am I this insane? Because I believe in my work, even if nobody else will (Or they might if they opened the attachments I sent years ago).

And in the end, if I have a 90-minute CV to send to people, that’s not the worst thing, is it?

This is my final day, after this, everything changes, everything happens. Hopefully.

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