"You have to take those opportunities to write, even if it's a small amount. I've found that five minutes turns to thirty."
- Priscilla Wise, Writer and Vice President and Chief of Staff at World Wide Stages
It’s always a pleasure talking to Priscilla Wise, and the time we spent with her on the MAKE IT podcast was no different. A consummate professional with a magnetic personality, Priscilla knows how to be in the right room, at the right time, with all the right people. She also knows how to give the right bit of advice right when you need it.
When Priscilla offered us this pearl of wisdom, it reminded us of two of our core principles: Be Better and Be Creative. Each principle is a lifelong process that leads to continuous growth but, at times, can feel like an uphill battle.
Imagine looking at the career of one of your idols only to realize that their industry success came after 10 feature films and a host of odd jobs in a variety of unremarkable positions. It would be easy to lose confidence in your own path forward knowing that you‘re only on your first feature film and it hasn’t even made it to a festival yet. The same is true when it comes to education. In film, there is so much to learn about your craft and, with rapid advances in technology, there is always some new tool, tip, trick, or technique just a YouTube video away. How can you possibly consume it all?
Well, the truth of the matter is that you can’t leap forward in time and you can’t eat an elephant all at once. You have to take it one bite at a time. The key, then, to not losing faith, is knowing that every bite is leading you closer to your goals.
Priscilla offered her advice to the writer who is working on their next screenplay and is struggling to find the time or the motivation. She suggests (and we believe) that devoting just five minutes a day is enough to springboard you to completion. The reason is that, as a creative, this is what you live for. You live for the process of bringing your art to life. You live for the neuropsychological rush of seeing the puzzle pieces begin to fit together.
Cecil B. DeMille, famed film producer and director, stated that “Creativity is a drug I cannot live without.” In fact, observations from neuropsychological research suggest that novelty, discovery, and creativity can excite the ventral striatal reward system of the brain just as strongly as drugs of abuse. Achieving this heightened mental state creates a domino effect for the hungry filmmaker who continues to crave more. Five minutes turns to ten. Ten to fifteen. Fifteen to thirty.
This intense internal sense of reward is also true for learning because, like creativity, it has the power to elicit illumination, otherwise know as “ah-ha” moments. The great composer Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky stated “… It would be vain to put into words that immeasurable sense of bliss which comes over me … (when) a new idea awakens in me … .” Taking your learning one bite at a time, while coupling it with your own innate sense of creativity will offer plenty of opportunity for your own “ah-ha” moments. Feeding off the joy and excitement that these moments bring, you will undoubtedly search for more, furthering your education as well as your creative journey.
We invite you to take Priscilla’s sage advice when it comes to both learning and creating. Don’t be scared of all that is left undone; be excited about all that you have the potential to do!
We’d like to thank Priscilla for dropping this pearl of wisdom on us and if you’d like to learn about her latest endeavor as Vice President and Chief of Staff at World Wide Stages, go to www.worldwidestages.com.
Be Better. Be Creative. Be Engaged.