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Sunday, 4 January 2015

Demob Happy

What an odd feeling.  I've nothing I have to do today.  Or tomorrow.  Or... well, actually I do have to do something Tuesday, but then it's back to not having to do again.  On Wednesday night my Residency at the Quay Theatre ended, more with a whimper than a bang, but it did, resolutely, end.  And now I'm having a month off.  I won't have a month off, I'll be posting lots of new and old material and planning things and generally getting itchy fingers, but I have very few things I have to do.
Being self employed largely involves setting dates and targets for yourself, otherwise you never get things done.  You have to be disciplined.  But it can turn into a never ending litany of stuff to do.  You find you haven't planned in any breaks, any days off, and you burn yourself out.  I'm not burnt out, but I am subtly singed on the edges.  
So, what am I doing?  Well, I've managed for the last few days to do next to nothing.  It is, slightly, maddening, but it's good for me.  I need time to think.  But already I'm thinking of doing things.  I don't think I can help myself.  I went for a long walk today, hoping to let my thoughts waft away (I call this taking my memes for a walk) and instead I wrote in my mind the first fifteen minutes of a lecture on Greek theatre which I'm giving later in the year.  I'm probably hopeless.
It's also quiet scary.  2014 was planned, there had to be ten shows - I said there would be ten shows so there were.  They changed a bit, things moved around, but there it was, a plan.  This year there isn't a plan.  There are some plans, projects I'm involved with, but they don't fill a schedule of works.  Which means I could, still, do ANYTHING I like.  I could, I have time in hand, to create ANYTHING, on top of the somethings I know I am creating.  That's a bit thing.  It's a big scary white area in the year, ready to be filled with whatever comes into my head.  And my head is filled with some scary ideas.
I have various bits and bobs that need to be done.  Next week I start booking venues for Everyman - a task I wanted to get done last year, but the Pantomime got in the way.  I've a whole host of audio stuff I want to put online, to record, to do.  Some of it new, some of it unfinished business from last year.
BUT - I'm not going to timetable any of this.  I'm not going to squeeze myself into a self enforced schedule, because I don't think I actually work better that way.  I suspect that some deadlines kill off my desire to make certain work - that I end up dreading the deadline more than I desire to create and then everything happens in a stress filled rush at the end.
SO - a more holistic January, before a necessary timetable occurs in February.  Let's see if I produce more or less, better or worse work because of it.  Because there's always so much work to create, and never enough time.
But for the rest of this Sunday - I think I might just read a book.

Part of what I'll also be doing this month is put together a package for fundraising in February to support the Everyman tour - but if you want to help support my work and I, then please make a little donation now.  There are no rewards, just my silent thanks - but any donation will make the new art of 2015 possible.  Thank you.


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