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Ozzywood to Hollywood (1) – Facing The Fears

I’ve never written a blog before. Not once. I haven’t even considered it.

Always seemed like too much work away from the real writing of the writing I wanted to write.


by Mark Rasmussen

Sure, I’ve seen plenty of blogs (even read a few) but I’ve never ever be interested in writing one myself but now as I find myself on the verge of entering the screenwriting capital of the world – Hollywood – now feels like as good a moment as ever to dive on in and sink or write. I choose to write!

So what’s a local boy who’s never really amounted to much doing dragging his white, scrawny arse half way across the world into a cauldron of established writers? A world that eats people alive and spits them out like unrequited love. I ask myself that question every day leading into what can only really be described as a life-changing event.

And it is. I am giving up a life I know for a life I don’t. I am giving up friends and family and job security for none of the above. But what I am doing is giving my dreams a chance to come alive.

It’s not often in life you get the chance to ever really do that. But you know what? It’s both liberating and fucking scary. For someone like myself who is normally so fearless and approaches life head on, who lives in the moment and simply loves life, I have to admit to being scared, concerned, nervous, a little worried.

I go with no work or job lined up or even any money coming in whatsoever. I have a finite amount of savings that may see me through six months if I spend it wisely. But what I do go with is faith, self belief and a real sense of adventure.

You see I’m an explorer. An adventurer. I face fear, doubt and worry head on. I may not always like what I see or have to confront at the time but that’s life. It can’t all be Cadbury Dairy Milk chocolate fantasies. How I wish it was. Mmmm… chocolate.

reflections of sydneyBut as the time nears where I walk through Sydney airport and leave Australia for possibly the last time, I am taking the time to reflect on my life, the friends I’ve made in Sydney in the two and a half years I’ve been here. My little achievements, my writing, my short films, my huge personal growth, especially these last six months. Of family in Melbourne and of the unknown.

It’s a huge leap of faith.

With every leap comes the moment of doubt before you leap. All the thoughts which tell you why you can’t do it. The ones that tell you why you shouldn’t. All the risks, all the what ifs – all of it. Everything you’ve never worried about before all come to the fore all at once and forces you to think, reflect and doubt it all. Even doubt yourself.

You know what, though? That’s the kind of stuff that thrills me, excites me. Makes me feel alive. Absolutely. We cannot grow, move forward, embrace a new life or ever be truly happy without the past, the fears all tormenting us before we make that jump.

I have made sure to keep a checklist of everything I need to do before I go – one, to make sure I finalise everything I need to do but two, to keep me sane. From selling all my furniture, my car, my beloved bike, to breaking my lease, finding another tenant, cancelling bills, boxing my stuff up, packing, saying goodbye to friends, flying to Melbourne, saying goodbye to my grandmother who I may never ever see alive again. It’s daunting, frightening and frankly, it’s also fun.

4th Ave.  & Pine St. Mural - Vancouver 1984It’s hard. Sure people are excited for me and congratulate me where they can and wish me good luck. And I feel the energy and positive vibes. I feed off it. I need it. I’m excited too. A new adventure awaits and for this traveller, the wanderer that I am and I love it. But I also feel scared, afraid and even worse. I feel alone.

What if I am unable to make it work, make new friends, sell my writing, make a career. What if I fail? What then? Do I just jump back on a plane and say, “Well, at least I gave it a shot.” And then where does that leave me?

But you know what. I don’t let those thoughts enter my mind. Because what if I do? What if my leap of faith comes off? What if it really all works out? That’s what keeps me going, energizes me, excites me, thrills me and makes me feel truly alive and happy. Nothing like getting out of your comfort zone to know what we can truly do and achieve.

Besides, I felt I was getting too comfortable in Sydney. Somewhat stale. Nothing wrong with wanting to feel challenged, pushed and embrace the unknown. It’s what separates the believers from the dreamers.

So as this wide-eyed dreamer moves closer to becoming a believer, and as all the fears and doubts begin to recede, replaced instead with hope, faith and belief in me and everything I stand for, let me leave you with this:

I’ve learned that sometimes all you have to is say ‘Fuck it’, and just live.

546 Dark ForestBut if that’s too simple then know this, “Have courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become.” I want to be a successful screenwriter. Sure, I want a lot of other things: love, happiness, health, wealth, success and more but for now, I chase down this dream.

So as I fly out into the great unknown, to a place known as LaLa land, one day I want to honestly say, I made it. And you know what, I believe I will!

[box] Mark Rasmussen has been a professional writer for over 15 years covering music, sport, travel, plays, web and more. 


In 2011 Mark was involved in six film projects, three of which he wrote, produced or co-produced. One of his films ranked inside the Top 10 of a public vote.


Mark’s currently working on six feature scripts and two shorts and is now based in LA to chase down dreams.[/box]
About the Author

Mark Rasmussen

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Mark Rasmussen has been a professional writer for over 15 years. He has written and produced three short films (two of which have IMDb credits), as well completed four features. One of his films ranked inside the Top 10 for the World Wildlife Fund competition (WWF). He is currently working on three feature scripts, two book adaptations, a TV pilot, and a web-series, as he increases his thirst for great writing and storytelling.

Comments 24

  1. Eat two minute noodles and stay away from pretty girls in bars and you could stretch that money to at least 9 months. hehe good luck and god speed!

  2. Pingback: Venice by The Lighthouse and The Whaler | because life is awesome

  3. Thanks Madeleine,

    Staying away from pretty girls is a good option. Not wanting to venture down that path for the foreseeable future. And thanks Karel. Would love that recipe and Mad’s contact details if you can email them, that’d be great.

  4. This piece is a great way to mark the start of your journey. Thanks for sharing this with us!

  5. ‘The courageous have fears that cowards never know.’

    Stanley M. Hauerwas

    Says it all…

  6. Love your insight and honesty – it’s exactly what I needed to read right now… for I am also standing waist-deep in a ‘fuck it, just do it’ time in her life. I’m mid-leap and man, do I feel like falling and not soaring, but I’m reminded of this stellar quote by anonymous… ‘To be a star you must shine your own light, follow your own path and don’t worry about the darkness for that is when the stars shine brightest.’ Wishing you a universe of courage – though it sounds like you’ve already got it. Go, shine. Phyllis x

    1. Thanks Phyllis,for your kind words. I blaze my own trail, always have. I will never ever die wondering or wake up one day when it’s too late and go, “Man, I wished I did this or done that.” Life’s for living. It’s an adventure, always has been to me. :-)

  7. On occasions, I have also found saying”Fuck it” does the trick. If your movies are as much fun as your blog, bring it on

  8. Pingback: From Ozzywood to Hollywood « The Story Department The Story Department

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