Vulnerability and Judgement

By: Duncan Coe

The past two weeks have been a whirlwind of emotions. There have been the highest of highs: when a person we had never met personally who we connected with through Seed and Spark donated $500 to our campaign... and another person $100... and countless other people countless other amounts. At one point I received an email from someone I reached out to on Seed and Spark who said simply, "So brilliant." That was uplifting.

There have also been lows: the agony of watching the other campaigns advance around you and the prospect of your dreams slipping away creeps into your consciousness. The icky feeling you get wanting them to fail so you can succeed, but also wanting them to succeed because you champion indie filmmaking. It's all a little difficult to digest. I'm sure that after the smoke clears and the rally is over I'll have a better understanding of everything that's happening, but for now it's chaos.

We're doing very well in the campaign and it's impossible to really put into words how thrilling this experience has been. And while I'd love to talk about all the great things that are happening all the time, I would be doing myself a disservice if I ignored the lows. It's hard. Making movies is hard. Crowdfunding is hard. It's all hard. The uncertainty, the wait, and probably the most antagonizing thing is the vulnerability you have to have when asking people for support.

The same is true in making art. For me there's always going to be a doubt that what I'm doing is the right thing. That I'm making the right choices and that the things I'm doing are good. "Good" is entirely subjective of course. I had an improv teacher who called it the judgement monkey. There's a little monkey sitting on your shoulder all the time... judging you. Learning to ignore the judgement monkey is hard because... well, it's a monkey. And every time you go out on a ledge to advance your career the monkey is going to be there. All I can do is keep my head up and my nose to the grindstone and trust that if I was doing it wrong I'd probably be dead, but I'm not so I've got to be doing something right.

TurtleDove Films