How To Succeed in Posting Without Really Trying, Starring Daniel Radcliffe

Personal / Saturday, March 25th, 2017

I currently have 114 posts in my drafts for this blog. If I went through them and sorted them, I know many would be either obsolete or better suited for my new animation site, Animation Complex.1  The earliest post in there is from March 25th, 2011.


Dramatic lone statement. For emphasis.

I didn’t post an actual post on here until May 4th, 2014, in a post appropriately titled “Overdue.” In this terse first post, I lay it all out:

For almost six years, I have longed to become a much more proficient writer. Similarly, it is one of my goals to become what many would consider a valid, valuable, and respected voice in the field of animation and computer graphics.
Day after day, year after year, I talked myself out of doing something as simple as starting a blog, not feeling secure with putting myself out into the Internet, nor confident that my opinions would ever carry any weight in the future.

It makes me uncomfortable, and that’s why I need to try.

Again, “For almost six years…”. Six, man. In 2008, I graduated from high school and was starting college. I wanted to start a blog, start a YouTube channel, but felt silly. Who would care? And to be honest, I still feel that way. In some ways, I dodged a bullet being born when I did: early enough to have a tech-free childhood, bar a weekly typing computer class where you had to manually launch the Windows OS from the DOS screen, but late enough where I’ve been able to enjoy this boon at an age where I could quickly and easily adopt it as a nearly-digital native. I dodged cyber-bullying as a kid, baby photos on FaceBook, and potentially saying some really dumb shit, as kids do.

That first blog post from 2011 was about going to see Daniel Radcliffe on Broadway2 with some college friends in our junior year. I know that I started typing it out and probably felt as though that wasn’t a “proper” first post. That I needed an introductory post or something with more of a hook. Or just that I’d be adding a droplet to an ocean. Always some reason.

So without further ado, on the anniversary of that original blog post’s intended publishing date, I give you the contents of that draft:

This past Tuesday, I was treated to a wonderful experience. Through my college, I was able to see Daniel Radcliffe (of Harry Potter fame) sing, dance, and speak with an American accent for only $36. This included the price of the ticket as well as the bus ride to and back from my school.

Something interesting to note about the story is…well…the story itself. The main character, Finch, specifically. He doesn’t ever have a downfall in this musical. He maneuvers his way into the higher ranks of a company, messes up, finagles out of it again, and at the end gets the big bucks and the girl. Doesn’t learn any lesson, doesn’t have a sharp change of character, nothing.

I know that from here, I would have attempted to delve into the idea of the “perfect character” trope, and how I’d lump him in with characters like James Bond and Mary Poppins–these perfect characters that don’t really have an arc, whom we love regardless. I’d have tried to delve into the unbalance I felt towards ‘Mary Sue’ characters vs. the male equivalent, ‘Marty Stus,’ not in calling them out, because, CALL AWAY, but rather the excuses that tend to be provided for the male characters.

It would be especially interesting to delve into sexism with How to Succeed due to the time period it takes place and, thus, dated attitudes that were then quaint but now casual sexism or just blatant sexual harassment in the workplace3. This would still make for an interesting post, but this is not that post. I think I hesitated to write that all out back then because I didn’t think I had the right to make these assessments–that I was still just a student, and though I was learning this type of thing, felt that I still just didn’t know enough. And in hindsight that’s absolutely true. But I was also denying myself many, many opportunities to learn by doing.

This post is a reminder that I have so, so many failed attempts, and somewhere along the line I let this culture trick me into seeing them as negatives in my life rather than opportunities. But changing your mindset is very, very hard. This post is also a reminder that I need to clear those drafts away, one way or another, and I hope most can be salvaged and I type them up with reckless abandon like I did this one. This is a pretty short post, but I’ll take that over not having posted anything about this. Lastly and most importantly, this post is a reminder that DanRad is super, super short.4

1) Gotta get that self-promo, yo.
2) You’re welcome.
3) There is literally a song in this called “A Secretary is Not a Toy” among other gems, that problematic and antiquated though they may be, are a conflicting delight to see acted out.
4) You’re welcome.

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