I’ve had to accept a harsh reality recently: I am in the business of imaginary things.
I play pretend, create imaginary worlds and stories, and make things where there used to not be a thing.
This fits great with my personality in many ways because I have always had a mind that ran far and wide away from the present moment.
The trouble with being in the business of imaginary things, though, is that you have to adjust your understandings of what productivity looks like.
On the opposite side of having a mind that wanders, I also have hands and feet and a heart that get restless easily. I like to always be doing something, and my restlessness is appeased by seeing the fruits of how productive and busy I am able to be each day. I need physical evidence of accomplishments daily.
Here-in the problems arise.
Sometimes the business of imagining leaves you with no physical evidence, especially when it is in process. It is productive, no question, but sometimes the proof of productivity is only in your mind- in the space where you spend hours staring at a blank page with out putting any words down, but developing worlds and moments in your mind that did not exist before.
I’ve had to learn how to let go of my need for “productivity proof” in order that I can actually start producing things.
Today I sat at my computer and listened to music that inspired me and read bits and pieces of the script for the show I am working on and tossed around a koosh ball and looked at images and just THOUGHT. I just let my mind go where it needed to go.
What happens typically when I start to enter into this place is that the control freak part of me goes “You’re wasting time! What are you producing?” and so I panic and end up writing a bunch of useless emails or tinkering with spreadsheets that don’t need to be tinkered with all because that, though unnecessary, at least feels like physical proof of productivity.
Today though, I forced myself to stay in the THINKING place, though uncomfortable. I bounced on my yoga ball at my desk, and tossed around that koosh ball, and kept the music coming, and stared at the trees outside my window, and referenced text when I needed to, and I just thought.
And something amazing happened- nothing “physical” was created, but I produced more in a couple of hours than I have in days. I had an “aha” that made me realize that the time spent creating and discovering something, even if it is just in your mind, is time spent productively. I got necessary work done today.
The imagining of a thing is a part of the work. It might even be the most crucial phase. It is work. It is not time wasted. It is the business of imaginary things becoming real.
I’ve had so many discoveries lately about being a creative and a productive- the balance, the challenges, and everything in between.
Today I learned the art of letting myself think. I may never be the same!
A toast to all of your imaginary things- I hope you give them a chance!
Ps- THIS is the music that’s been rocking my world today
Hi Reduxers, Julia here!
It’s said that good directing is 80% casting the right actors. If I trust my instincts while working with actors in the audition room then I can allow and fully encourage them to trust their instincts in the rehearsal room.
Oh. Ok. So I have to do 80% of my work on this 5-month project in two weeks? Cool. No problem.
Casting. Not a job for the faint of heart.
It is 11:59 pm CDT on Monday April 1st, 2013 and as of a little bit ago our Judas Redux Kickstarter hit it’s goal. At the moment, we are at 778 backers and $36,387. Suffice it to say, I’m grasping for words.
I’m completely serious when I say I was deeply worried that we might not meet our goal in planning this Kickstarter. I truly thought that the aim was just too high, there was no way we’d be able to gather that much support and financing around this little play that we’ve talked about doing forever. At times I anxiously considered pulling the project: saving it for a later time, or just scrapping it entirely. The idea of launching a Kickstarter and failing sounded like a certain level of hell and misery I wasn’t interested in visiting.
In the end, though, we did the crazy thing- we launched. We set our goal as low as we could while still being able to actually pull off the show and just said “yes” to the whole insane adventure of it. Personally, I had to decide that I wanted this show more than I was afraid of it, or afraid of failing at it.
I was fully prepared to have to HUSTLE to get even close to reaching the goal by the end of the 30 days. A miracle happened, though- you all, and countless others, swept in and said “don’t worry juls, we got this”. And within about 80 hours of launching the campaign you did. You had it. More importantly though, you had my back and the team’s back, and I can’t tell you what that felt like- to take the leap and find a community of people there ready to catch.
You want to know the single most common thing said to me over these past four days by people on Twitter and Kickstarter, etc?
I’m proud of you!
People I’ve never met telling me they are proud of me. Reaching a hand out to say “you are doing good, and I support you.”. These interactions have felt like some of the most intimate I’ve had with this fan base and audience to date. To feel that I have made countless of you proud of me is a bigger reward than most I’ve had in the past few years.
In all of this, and in the past few weeks, I’ve found a few key truths to stand the test: 1) The people around you matter 2) When you most feel like giving up, it’s time to dig in- to do the crazy thing.
I can’t tell you how many mornings I would wake up after a day and night of stresses or worries or new roadblocks only to find texts and emails from the team pumping me up, reminding me of why this matters, reassuring me that they had my back, that they were their to help. That kind of energy is not just contagious, it’s unstoppable. Surrounding yourself with people who are so ready to come to your side is vital. It makes all the difference. I owe so much already to Lauren, Corey, Joey, and Brian for just being amped- for being down. For not just saying an immediate “Yes” to this whole thing, but to constantly be there to remind me why I said “Yes.” And we’re only just beginning!
In terms of doing the crazy thing- well, it’s exactly that: crazy. But when you know it’s right, it’s right. I think at some point you just have to decide to put your blinders on, dig in deep, and GO. If you want it you have to go after it, and you have to shut out all of the negative forces around you that could possibly cause you to even momentarily hesitate in the going.
I’m rambling, but that is because you have left me with too many sentiments and not enough time to process :). These past few days and weeks have been some of the fullest, toughest, but sweetest times I’ve had in a while, and I’m so thankful to you all for being a part of them.
So the journey begins! It is happening! And you made it possible. I hope if nothing else I can offer you in return the living proof that it actually does pay to do the crazy thing you’ve always said you would do.
Be one of the crazy ones.
Hello friends, supporters, and people who may know nothing about us but will soon be a part of our team!
Wanted to take a minute to answer some frequently asked questions that we’ve been getting via twitter, kickstarter, etc.
Will this show be on YouTube?
“The Last Days of Judas Iscariot”…
I have the image of the scene from “Bridesmaids” in my head- where Melissa McCarthy is smacking Kristin Wiig around and finally Kristin punches back.
I’ve never felt more intimately that feeling of being on the thin line between just laying down or popping back up with arms swinging than I have recently. And I’m happy to say that I think I found a bit of fight deep down that has eluded me before. What’s worth fighting for more than your own damn life, the essence of who you are and what you want your time here to be about?
You know how when you are in a fitness class or working out or something, and you feel like you absolutely are done, you need to give up, and then the teacher says “10 more seconds!” and you go “Oh! I can do that!”. Like, knowing that you are so close to the other side makes it really easy to hold on a little longer.
10 more seconds. You’re so close. Let’s all commit to holding on for those last 10 seconds. Fight for it. You got this.
A friend and I joked at our New Year’s Party that the theme of the year was “2012 is TOO Big”
…oh man, we didn’t realize what we were getting into by saying that.
2012 has certainly proven “too big”. But things getting bigger just mean you have to get better, and I’m all about that.
I’ve had a constant stream of work and projects since 1/1/2012 and I’ve tried to be constantly grateful, but sometimes in the hustle and bustle you lose sight of it all. What used to be just a dream has now become the daily work… It’s like in the midst of my stress one day I woke up and realized I was actually living what I daydreamed about 2 years ago
So thank YOU. Thank you for supporting, thank you for listening. And thank you to the Creator and Meaning behind it all… for being blessed, but also for being reminded to be humble, and to be a hustler.
Up next: APOCALYPTOUR! I am directing this tour again, which Im honored to do. The SPACE tour felt like the most impossible thing I’d ever been asked to do. Thank goodness I work with such bad-ass people. Now we’re doing it again, only this time coming directly off of Holy Musical Batman… no rest for the ambitious.
I am the kind of person who is constantly demanding more of myself, for better or worse. This tour I am determined to top what we did last time. The music so far is INCREDIBLE (Thank goodness for our music director Clark). New songs that we dont typically do, and so many new arrangements. We’re pushing the dance and choreo to be sharper and more exciting, and we’re adding new cast members and even a whole storyline. The world may be approaching doomsday (Apocalypse, anyone?) but maybe Team StarKid and the StarKid community can change that.
I’m throwing in a deal: For every venue that we sell-out between now and May 9th (the day we leave) I will dye a streak of purple into my hair. We’ve got one already (Philly) so it looks like I’ll be adding some purple to my world within the next week or so. Will there be more? We’ll see?
If you’d like to come out and see our labor of love and blood and sweat and tears, checkout the page below for dates, times, and ticket info.
You guys rock so much! Hope to see you in a city near you in May/ June!
I started this tumblr AGES ago. The summer between graduating college and moving to New York. I started it literally just because I wanted a place to write. Writing became my creative outlet at the time because I could do it whenever and wherever. I had no idea then the “culture” the surrounded tumblr… I just wanted a blog.
Now this little place has come to feel more like a place for feelings, a group to talk to, and though public, just a little quiter than many other places I could share my feelings.
In these past couple of years I’ve gained quite a larger audience on here, on twitter, online in general. Life has changed immensely, and its AWESOME dont get me wrong! The hard thing for me has been learning the fine balance of how honest and direct I can be with you all. I’ve always been a person that wanted to know everyone… and know them deeply. I’ve always craved to be known completely and deeply by people. I like the raw, real, inner stuff in people. I think that’s the beautiful stuff. I think people are beautiful and have beautiful stories to tell- stories of joys and sorrows and victories and losses.
Sometimes though, honesty is unpopular, or misunderstood. You can’t count on people understanding your purest and clearest intentions. I’ve always wanted people to know my deepest and truest intentions, which I know to be for good. I make mistakes, I get mad sometimes or I just get misunderstood. Maybe I say the wrong thing or too much (more often too much because I just love to talk!) In the journey of gaining attention as an actress and artist at large, this dirty word of “censorship” has popped up: where do I need to “censor” myself?
I don’t want to have to “censor” myself because I don’t ever want to be something I’m not. In this entertainment field especially things get trickier and trickier as you make the decisions on what you will or will not do. I have lofty aspirations… but I do not want to reach certain points of success and not recognize the face in the mirror. Basically, I just always want people to be able to see my soul, and see that it is good. I know my soul, the spirit in me, is good… great in fact. I am a flawed human, and I judge plenty about myself daily (don’t you worry about that!) but I can humbly say the spark and essence of my being is beautiful because it is of something grander and greater than me.
All of this to say a few things: One, that believe it or not sometimes I forget that anyone is watching. Two, that when I may say too much, or say something controversial I will either apologize if I am in the wrong, or just recognize that perhaps my honesty is misunderstood because how can I ever expect any person to understand all the details and truth that are really at play.
Sometimes things happen that are very painful, and an easy response is humor. But the truth is I’ve had many relationships of all types come and go in my life… and I almost never want to see them go… being left behind is a very painful trigger for me. But I’ve found that when this happens, I’ve grown deeply and been healed by pulling in closer to the other people that I’m left with as well. Life changes, we lose things, but if I stay present with myself and my life, every loss turns into a beautiful new growth and season.
When it’s easy, and when it’s harder than anything else, I can honestly say I try to send love and forgiveness to all people at all times, because that is what my beliefs have taught me to do. Sometimes I’m better at it, sometimes much worse, but if you want to ask me what my core belief about life and humanity and the meaning of it all is it’s this:
Love can conquer all. Forgiveness is necessary in all circumstances. Often the one being healed is actually the forgiver.
So, this is a tumblr-exclusive post. Trust me, I know this is not my private diary I’m writing to right now: it’s you guys. I trust you with my feelings because you’ve changed my life for the better, and because I choose to trust people more often than not.
I hope you all find the ways in your own life that you can stay true and honest to yourself… hold onto your core that you know and believe in. That’s what is going to be left standing when things fall apart. From that core truth, things will fall back together in a new and beautiful way.
All my love,