Standard Story Company

What are your filmmaking goals for 2024?

I hope you’ve had a great 2023, and got to work on some fun projects.

Since we’re all thinking about our filmmaking plans & goals for the upcoming year, I wanted to share my plans for 2024, including what you can expect to see from me here and on YouTube.

I’ve narrowed my film-related goals next year to just 3… I’d love to add more, but I know I’d dilute my focus, burn out, and probably fail at all 3!

It’s important to note that all 3 of these goals are not based on results, because the results are inherently outside of my control.

Instead, the goals are all based on how I spend my time and energy, which means I can only fail if I don’t show up and do the work.

This is a much healthier way to set goals than the traditional way (ex: ”Lose 30 pounds”).

By setting goals based only on the inputs that might lead to the desired outcome (ex: “Exercise for an hour everyday”), the unpredictable outcomes won’t send you on an emotional rollercoaster that risks you giving up on the goal entirely.

(that’s you)

These emails have been sporadic at best, but in 2024, I plan to write a new email every single week that you’ll actually look forward to reading.

This will be a big priority moving forward, because:

  1. I’ve come to love receiving weekly newsletters from my favorite creators, often more than their actual videos.

  2. YouTube has been known to randomly kill channels, so in the interest of job security 😅, I want to provide the same amount of value off their platform as I do on it.

  3. Writing is the bottleneck for everything I do. Sometimes it takes me a week to think up and write out a solid video.

But if I commit to delivering you a well though-out newsletter every week, I’ll soon have a huge backlog of ideas and content to expand upon whenever I’m ready to make a new YouTube video.

Meeting that weekly goal should only take me an extra 20 minutes of focused writing every weekday, but like most things, the cumulative impact is massive when it becomes a consistent habit.

So check your inbox every Friday for a delightful dose of:

  • Practical filmmaking tips

  • Storytelling concepts & theories

  • News & case studies from the independent film world

  • Updates on my own projects

  • Insights on the business of filmmaking today

  • Movie/book recommendations, dumb jokes, etc

If I ever miss a week, please reply here and berate me.

I plan on creating my biggest film project(s) yet, and thoroughly documenting the process for you.

Again the bottleneck here is writing.

After 3 years of focus on growing this Standard Story Company business, I’m grateful to have the budget in place to make something bigger than I’ve ever done…

But I don’t have a script!

(well I have a lot of old ones, but not one I’m willing to dedicate that much time and money into)

That’s why this year, business growth will take a backseat to creative growth. And creative growth starts with new scripts.

Writing even 1 page of a script everyday would soon yield a huge catalogue of scripts to choose from. After a year, that would be 3-4 feature films, or 73 five-minute long short film scripts.

By making screenwriting a part of my daily routine again, I’ll wade through enough crappy stories to find one that’s gold.

This will most likely become a $15-30k short film with a professional team – a production around the level of my Will “The Machine” short.

However, I’m also hungry to put together a low budget feature film, and I may skip straight to that project instead if the right idea hits first.

But whatever my next big swing is, I’ll add a dedicated BTS videographer into the budget so I can document the whole experience and share my learnings with you here, on YouTube, and in new material for the short film course.

Speaking of which…

WRAPPED in 30 Days, was definitely my biggest project of 2023 – it took about 10x longer than I thought it would 💀

I’m so proud of the course and the short films that have come from it, but after running 150 students through it, I’m learning a lot about their common problem areas.

Editing was the most common (and easiest) area for improvement among their shorts, so I’m adding an entire short film editing course to the WRAPPED program. I’m about halfway through it now, and should have it available to all members by the end of January.

After that, I’ll continue rolling out new lessons and live Q&A sessions throughout the year and growing/nurturing the community.

If you’re interested in joining us, you can learn more here.

But first, what are your filmmaking goals for 2024?

They say writing them down helps you commit to them, so feel free to reply to this email with your goals. I won’t respond back, but I can assure you I’ll read it and silently judge you if you fail 🙂

Here’s wishing you a very happy, healthy, and fruitful new year.

Let’s make some movies.


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