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  • Writer's pictureMackleen

What's Next, Mackleen?

Updated: Dec 20, 2019

Following up to "What's next?" is like graduating from college without an idea on how you plan on ruling the world.

I've sat and talked about "Smoke" in this festival, and that one and the question that terrifies me the most is, "So, what's next for you, Mackleen?" My answer is always a cute, you'll see. And I laugh as I slowly panic.

“Success isn't about how much money you make. It's about the difference you make in people's lives.” -Michelle Obama

With every filmmaker, or creative ones with tons of ideas, 'what's next' isn't always the problem. It's, can I follow up? If I'm honest, I didn't think my first movie was oh so perfect. There are 100 things I would change, but I'm no fool. It was pretty awesome. My fear is, will I be able to follow up with shock value? Is it going to touch people, story-wise, like my last one? Do I even do another movie? #FilmLife

Writers Block and Anxiety

When I wrote "Smoke" I was in a different place in my life. I was dumped by a guy for pretty much no reason other than I'm too bubbly. I was living alone in a very secluded part of Georgia, where my friends wouldn't visit, and I was too far away from the city of Atlanta to be invited anywhere. I was also working two jobs and walking my dog, while avoiding neighbors I didn't trust. Needless to say, I drank wine and poured my heart out in "Smoke." I was kinda in a sad state, so I wrote in a sad place.

Today, I'm in a completely different place. This is two and a half years later. I have one job, living with someone, living close to the city, so I'm now always invited places, hardly walking the pooch but still avoiding neighbors. #Introvert But the biggest change, my mother just died. I'm not just in a sad state, I'm devastated.

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