Funded! This project was successfully funded on July 1, 2011.

Update #1

The thing about struggle…

2 comments

If you stay with me long enough to read these, my personal musings on struggle, I think you’ll find that it is worth your time and you will have a better understanding of our film, “Nothing Special” and my life, and my artistic muse, which seems to be that uninvited guest named, “Struggle.” It’s not something I want at the Thanksgiving table, but there it is, unavoidably linked to my family and me, and not to be ignored. Somehow, by some trick of benign fate, it is our relation, and insists upon joining us when we are just sitting down to celebrate and give thanks. And like many great traditions (like forgetting the yams or burning the gravy) its unwelcome presence, despite years of attempted banishment, makes everything strangely worthwhile. It is the great guests that worthy stories are made from. But I can tell you something I know for a fact (through extensive personal research), whoever said “Money does not buy happiness” was born a wealthy man. Money does buy happiness for those of us who have always worried about it, and that happiness shows itself in the form of a long list of money-bought-happiness things. Money is nice. Poverty is mean. Now, the American Dream is the story of struggle, bootstraps and all those Horatio Alger myths, embedded so deeply in the American fabric, about valiant efforts to rise from poverty through rugged individualism and the ultimate triumph of the meritorious. And through that paradigm, many worthy people are produced through struggle. And I believe I would not have come this far, received scholarships, won awards, and inspired my children, if I hadn’t struggled and worked to improve myself. So, I am glad to earn my keep. But the funny thing about those Horatio Alger stories is the hero, though valiant, is usually saved by marrying into a wealthy family, rather than simply achieving financial and social freedom through self denial and  “a cheerful whistle” or other hereditary and self nurtured attributes. The heroes work hard, but they are usually saved by outside forces with money, that is to say -- financial backing. Money changes things. It gets projects made. It offers perspective to the struggle. So those of you, my supporters, who know me, know that I am not making a case against struggle, on the contrary, I am making a case for struggle, but I am also making the case for money. Without struggle, we cannot know achievement, celebration, triumph and the list goes on. But those personal victories are not a confirmation of my own deeply held belief in the compassionate capacity of the human race. They pale in comparison to “the kindness of strangers” because this is the core tenet of art. It is the reason Blanche DuBois waxes poetic or Mrs. Willy Loman declares, “Attention must be paid!” And every once in a while (or even more often) when I am down, someone will do something surprising, filled with justified belief or plain old-fashioned goodness. And so I keep going, triumphant.  But the other side, our other great and devastating capacity, is that of complacency, resignation and darkness. And those forces sometimes compel me to close the curtains, dust off my old friend, Poe, and contemplate the evil darkness of the situation. Or my pal, Eeyore, and I commiserate for a moment about how easy it is to lose one’s tail, and we go looking for that appendage somewhere in the woods where we must have lost it along the way. But we always make our way back, because the trail is well worn, and lined with great friends. And I have met many of you in my travels with this film. We have encountered standing ovations, tears and stories from every port that reflect a deep and abiding glue that connects us all. Our struggle to feel the full weight of our import, when we’ve all believed from time to time that we are “Nothing Special” (despite the great evidence to the contrary) is our glue and our victory. Without struggle, we cannot know triumph. We are all connected, and this film was not made by me, but by a collection of the triumphant. You great, compassionate supporters, who have taken action to back the release of this highly awarded, “darkly beautiful film about the good – despite the bad” are probably familiar with struggle. And I am here to say, thank you! And keep going because we are going to make it. That is why I say; whoever said money does not buy happiness was born a wealthy man, because without struggle, you cannot know happiness and the happiness that money can buy! So, I am in search of the other half of the Horatio Alger paradigm – I need a wealthy “family” to adopt me (artistically speaking) and save me from the ever-looming shadow that threatens my whistle, because a gal needs both things, ultimately, to succeed. I know (by the law of averages) one or two or three or four of you know someone who can get us to our goal. And I am asking you now, to reach out to that person and ask them to back this project at the highest level, so we can reach our goal. I will fly to that person's home, with one or more of the lead actresses and exhibit this film and generally thank them and prove our worth to this great Patron of the Arts. I ask you now to reflect, and think hard about that one person you know who can contribute to this “most meritorious film” by pledging support. We have a backer who is willing to match a contribution at the highest pledge level if we find someone in the next 9 days, before our project deadline. Please help by wracking your brain for that supporter or group of supporters who will make a large contribution. Thank you for all your help. We continue the struggle.

Comments

    1. Fb_profile_picture.small

      Creator Howard Miller on June 22, 2011

      Dana, the short of it- (as of 6/22/11 at 1:07am) Pledge Balance to meet goal: $225. from the general public + $10,000. from a special someone (who might think it's nothing special?) needed by July 1st. (the $10,000. will be "matched"). Add in the current pledge of $8,775. and the $30k goal will be met.

      Angela, wonderful thing about struggle...the difference between insanity and genius is success...and you have already succeeded in producing a very engaging and worthwhile film, which my wife and I previewed at the Gig Harbor Film Festival, and I would like to mention, a very concise, intelligent and unique solicitation for funding. May this film bless every family that gets to see it!

    2. Missing_small

      Creator Dana M. Lewis on June 21, 2011

      I am a backer, but I was unable to get through your 3-page paragraph due to a limit of time and eye strain trying to keep the lines in order. I scrolled to the bottom to get to the punch line, but couldn't find it.

      Please let us know how much you need with some suggestions of how we can help. Any additional information should be put in a more organized paragraph form for those who have time to read it. Those of us who are busy and would like to help are likely to keep going because of the intimidating presentation of your request. I hope we can help find you more supporters!

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Funding period

- (30 days)