Ed Wood

I’ve always admired those types of people who need to do things. They need to climb Mount Everest, or they need to become a millionaire, or they need to make movies. It’s most impressive for those who suffer from a severe lack of a talent, such as Ed Wood. He got what he wanted, more or less, by sheer determination and good spirits.
I realized something soon after I arrived in Los Angeles:

I am not one of those people.

I’d like to have my screenplays produced. I’d like to get a staff job on a TV show. But now that I’m living in the center of it, I’m at a great vantage point to appreciate all the industry’s worst points. More and more I notice its superficiality, its nonsensical hiring practices and its policies that serve to stifle creativity. Of course, this could be a case of my brain hedging my bets for me, so that if and when I fail, I can feel okay about it.

And yet, there’s something genuine here. A career in Washington suddenly seems more appealing, if for no other reason than an entry-level job working for a campaign or a government office could be rewarding, even without hope of advancement, whereas entry-level jobs in Hollywood are nothing but hope of advancement: mind-numbing, soul-sucking, pig-fucking wastes of time, played out by thousands of thousands of would-be actors and would-be writers and would-be models, answering phones for rich people like the receiver has magical transformative powers, like smiles and proximity are the engines of upward mobility, 98% of them never coming close to realizing their dreams. A million Ed Woods without the luck and with only half enough initiative to make it all happen.

And so I have to hope I’m one of those who can slip by on talent alone.


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