It sounds so official when you say it like that... My Novel.
It really is just a bunch of words jotted down in word format with no real flow in a storytelling mode. It was an idea of mine that came about because I realized how shitty I was at writing a screenplay, which was my real passion. I quickly realized that I wanted to direct, produce, write, cast, and include the soundtrack all at once. So this was impossible considering that well, I'm crap at all of these things. It's amazing how your ego thinks that you can do something when you really don't have a snowball's chance in hell of doing it properly.
Anyway, you might say that the book is writing itself. Or more like, it wrote itself over 10 years ago. I'll explain...
In 1998, I ventured out on a 3 month excursion to backpack through Europe on my own. I have had a fascination with this since I could remember. Seeing all of Europe was a dream of mine and I finally had money and time in the same spot, and I knew that I wouldn't have it for very long, so I decided to carpe diem it over there pronto.
I had been given a journal from a friend of mine, Judy. She had written in the sleeve "all the best with your adventures, Jude"
This meant so much to me. I now had something to document this trip of mine that I was viewing would be the quest of my life. I hoped that I would return to Canada with a great movie script based on what craziness would find me while I was there. I was so full of curiosity and I could barely contain myself to go.
I kept a consistent journal of my entire trip and although it was a great trip, many bad things happened that made me question if it truly was a great trip. When I returned home, I was very disappointed that my screenplay wasn't anything that I thought was considered "Spectacular"
Well, I was wrong. I would re-read my journal every year after that trip and see what I did on the exact same day as if I was still there. I did this for the first 5 years afterwards. Then, I got tired of seeing how stupid I was writing this.
I took a couple years off, and then tried to re-read it again. And suddenly, I realized that my story wasn't as bad as I thought. In fact, it was a GREAT story!! I was blinded by stupidity because I was thinking it had to be something that would sell to a Hollywood audience. But mostly, I was thinking like the 26 year old guy that I was. What was important to me at that age wasn't so important to me when I was in my 30's.
Suddenly when I was reading my journal, I realized that it was filled with great co-incidences, remarkable people, chance encounters and most importantly, incredible learning experiences.
That meant nothing to me when I was chasing and documenting the ultimate party. I thought that being part of the Running of the Bulls would have solved that. But as big as a party as that was, it did little to satisfy my thirst for a crazy time.
The World Cup of Soccer was in France that year, and although it was crazy that still didn't come close to being the party I expected, nor did Bastille Day when I was in the south of France.
It's funny how when you are older reading what a punk you were, you see the same words, but you see a totally different picture.
Reading it now, I didn't see that I missed a great big party. Instead I saw that I realized how human relationships worked and how beautiful and precious life was in each and every person.
Even while I was wrapped up in these moments, my mind wasn't open to what it is now, and I saw things totally different. Now I see a scared shitless kid (me) running away from himself and finding moment after moment of people adding to his life and now, 10 years later, they are still in my life.
And when I realized this, I saw that my story was now worthy of being told. What I thought was ordinary, turned out to be anything but when I was telling the tale to people around me. Funny how perception varies...
Get ready for this tale. I think it will touch you and make you laugh just the same. I'm excited about its pending release someday and I hope that you will enjoy reading it as I have in re-discovering it all over again by telling the tale in print form...