"You know what's wrong with everybody? Too smart. I know it sounds crazy. I know. But it's true. Everybody's too smart. It's like everybody knows everything and everybody argued everything and everything got hashed out and settled the day before I was born. It's not fair. They know about gravity so nobody talks about gravity. It's a dead issue. Look at me. My feet are stuck to the fuckin' floor. Fantastic. But no. That's gravity. Forget it. It's been done, it's been said, it's been thought, so fuck it. It's not fair. I've been shut outta everything that mighta been good by a smartness around that won't let me think one new thing."
From the play Savage in Limbo by John Patrick Shanley
Originality. I sometimes wonder if it even exists anymore. I get an idea for a story or a play and then I realize it's already been written. But the fact is, it hasn't been written by me.
Yeah, I get frustrated. All the time. I feel like I'm constantly trying to reinvent myself or figure out what my "style" is. Who am I as an artist? What are the types of stories and characters am I attracted to? There are trends in storytelling. Have you noticed that? Vampires, Memoirs, Robots with emotions...when one or two are successful, we suddenly find ourselves inundated with similar styles. I don't want to jump on anybody else's train. I want my own train.
I think the trick is to not worry whether or not the story I want to tell has been told. The odds are, it has. But the fact is we are human beings that share the same experiences and the same emotions. It's those very things that can make our stories resonate with a large group of people.
So am I struggling? Yes. Do I want to write a play about it? Yes. Has it been done before? Yes. But it has never been done by me. It is original to me. So I shake off this ennui...and I begin...again.