Tuesday, August 28, 2012

A Grounded Dreamer...Oximoron?

Nope, just The Don.

And as my talented hubby embarks on making one of his dreams come true, I decided to give him some very well-deseverd kudos.  He is exactly what the title says...a grounded dreamer.  He is a man that has had many ambitions and dreams, since before I ever met him.  Dreamers are attractive, and those who chase their dreams are sexy, but one who can realize that their dream isn't exactly what they thought and can change course-that's The Don.

Some people might frown upon this type of thinking and say that you gave up on your dream, but when your dealing with a creative soul, I think realizing that your passion is with a different creative outlet is admirable.  Not everyone wants or has to struggle for what they love and if you give it a go and decide it isn't worth it, then what's wrong with that? That's not necessarily giving up on your dream, it might just be that maybe this particular dream isn't the one you're meant to chase.  That's what happened with The Don, he didn't give up he just changed direction towards his true dream, and the one worth chasing. So chase he has, up, down and around the bend. It's been an elusive catch, one that has teased and tormented, but The Don has taken charge of his path and that little bugger is within our grasp....finally.

I would like to think that I have contributed to the "grounded" part a tiny bit.  Not in an unsupportive or "ball-and-chain" sense, I have always supported The Don, so much so that I moved to LA with him to pursue his first passion: directing and films.  I would, instead, like to think of my contribution as kind of like being his personal compass-I'm always pointing North for him. When he goes into overdrive or gets lost going West then East then Southwest, I try to be the steady that brings him back to North. Not tying him down, just helping to guide and keep him focused, because The Don is first and foremost a dreamer but that grounded sense has him frequently checking his compass to make sure he is going in the right direction and still on path.

When we moved to LA, I thought this was it.  I believe in The Don wholeheartedly and was quite confidant that he would be successful-he is a driven and talented man.  But the entertainment industry is tricky and LA is a whole different world. Some love it, I had a very hard time. I was an outsider looking in, so I dabbled on the inside with a production company on the Paramount Studios Lot, and I saw a lot of things that were not ok with me. I know there are a lot of good people in the industry, but there are a lot of shady folks too and The Don is not shady, so in my observations, he was at a disadvantage.  There are some tactics taken by people trying to break into films and directing, and they were things that The Don would not do, which put him at another huge disadvantage. Family issues and my dislike for LA, put me on a path to come back to Ohio.  I wasn't going to give him an ultimatum, but I had to make choices for me and we weren't even engaged yet.  Thankfully, The Don decided to come with me-but that didn't mean he was giving up on this dream.  He just decided that if he had to direct his own film on his own time and dime, why not just do it back in Ohio?

So that's what he did.  We moved to Cleveland and he teamed up with a local guy who wanted to produce a film. They wrote a script, held casting calls, got a crew, set up a filming schedule, found locations, edited and edited and in December of 2007 Tomorrow for a Dollar was premiered at Tower City cinemas in Cleveland, OH.  It had an aggressive schedule, they both worked full-time, and very small budget, but they did it.  It even made it into a small New York film festival.  It was something to be proud of and also an eye opening experience for The Don.  He loved the creative process, he was a movie guru, but he realized from this experience that what he loved about movies was not at all what he had thought.  When analyzing his love for movies, it wasn't the cinematography direction, it was the storytelling. His experience with directing wasn't what was most enjoyable, it was actually writing the story.

So he checked his compass, reset North, and began research for his first novel.

Here is where the true grounded dreamer comes into play.  The Don has quietly worked on his novel in the evenings and weekends, whenever he could find the time, but all the while never missing a bedtime with Piper or baseball/soccer game for Justin.  He has continued to grow his design/web career full-time so I could stay home with the kids and to ensure our family has a stable income and health insurance. He didn't let his dream negatively affect our family because he is grounded, therefore, I wasn't going to let him give up on this book...because he's a dreamer!

So here we are, 6 years of research, rewrites, proofreading, editing, tweaking and about 6 solid drafts later and The Don is about to self-publish his first novel. It was a long, hard decision to self-publish, but after much querying, research and gut searching, and a quick check of the compass, it was the new North. It's exciting and nerve-wrecking, as chasing dreams can be, but it was worth it and I couldn't be prouder of him.!

So as The Don starts this journey very grounded, I will continue to point him North...which is ultimately toward the stars.

He is making his dreams come true, as his first novel The Sinner King: Book of Fire is NOW on Amazon.com and barnesandnoble.com  
or you can visit the website at www.thesinnerking.com

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