I could discuss how much Natalie Portman deserved the Oscar last night. I could start a petition that would forever require Colin Firth to wear a tuxedo (because he always should). I could point out that no matter how weird Tim Burton looks Helena Bonham Carter is still hot. Instead, I will explain how last night reminded me of an old dream I had, long, long ago …
Ever since I was a kid, I’ve dreamt about winning an Oscar. When I went through my theater phase, I thought I might win for Best Actress. Then, when I realized I was a writer, I thought maybe Best Screenplay. Now, as I continue trucking along on my novel, I’ve realized what I really want is the Oscar for Best Adapted Screenplay—a screenplay, of course, based on my book.
I can see it now. Darren Aronofsky will be sitting in his office and an award-winning book (yeah, I went there) will slide across his desk. He’ll read my award-winning book and say to himself, “Someone should make this into a movie. I will be that someone. And hmm, how about I have this Sara Dobie writer person do the screenplay?” Voila. Dream come true.
So as I went to sleep last night, converting Mila Kunis’s Oscar gown into my ideal wedding dress, I had a rude awakening. I realized that for months, I haven’t been dreaming. I don’t mean the kind you have when you’re asleep; I mean waking dreams, where you picture yourself being awesome at whatever it is you’re most awesome at doing.
It’s true; my personal life is the ultimate example of awesome right now. Two weeks ago, the man of my dreams proposed to me. I have been given the exciting task of planning the coolest wedding EVER, with the help of my mother, Jake’s mother, and Jake’s gay brother (who should be my personal shopper). Yet, somewhere along the line, I have grown lackluster professionally.
I have a job I’m good at, writing marketing copy for wonderful dreamers who just want to be published. I get to work from home, which means I can freely head to yoga, grab lunch with friends, or read a book all afternoon. Somewhere within this pleasant ease, though, I’ve stumbled into what is known as “failure to thrive.” As a writer, I’ve become hypnotized by mediocrity. I do my job, get assignments in on time, and work on my novel as much as I can. But I haven’t been challenged, and when I’m not challenged, I get bored. There is nothing less productive than a bored Sara.
So yesterday, I did something unthinkable. I downloaded a Katy Perry song (and not the fun one about kissing girls). I downloaded “Firework.” Yes, I’m going to quote the lyrics. Deal with it:
You don’t have to feel like a waste of space
You’re original, cannot be replaced
If you only knew what the future holds
After a hurricane comes a rainbow
Maybe your reason why all the doors are closed
So you could open one that leads you to the perfect road
Like a lightning bolt, your heart will blow
And when it’s time, you’ll know
You just gotta ignite the light
And let it shine
Just own the night
Like the Fourth of July
Cause baby you’re a firework
Come on show ’em what you’re worth
Make ’em go “Oh, oh, oh!”
As you shoot across the sky …
I don’t care if you think I’m a nerd; this song makes me feel anything but bored. It makes me feel like I could be an Oscar winner. It makes me feel like I need to get back into my work and write the hell out of it. I don’t know for sure when I stopped dreaming about my career, but it has to stop. After all, my personal life is thriving; it just wouldn’t look right if I was a professional idiot.
So I’m going to dance to some obnoxiously loud Katy Perry in my living room. I’m going to daydream about my Oscar speech. I’m going to jump into my work this week and kick some literary ass—because I can.
During his Best Actor acceptance speech last night, Colin Firth said, “I have a feeling my career has just peaked.” Can you imagine being able to say that? He may have meant it as a self-deprecating joke, but I think it would be awesome to be able to say that—to have reached the highest pinnacle of your field.
I’m going to win an Oscar someday, right after I finish my book, get it published, win some literary awards, appear on the cover of Maxim, and … well, you get the idea. Happy daydreaming.