I have been studying the lives of the women in this picture collage above: Ava Duvernay (left), Salli Richardson Whitefield (top right) and who I like to call, My Mother of Writing, Shonda Rhimes (bottom right). I have watched countless videos of their interviews, social media videos and recently finished reading Shonda Rhimes book, Year of Yes. Now, these women are not new to being “badassery” as Momma Rhimes calls what they do, to film and television. I did not just make that word up either, look:
behavior, characteristics, or actions regarded as formidably impressive.“few of us can attain her level of badassery”
Although I am deeply inspired by their, in my humble opinion, fabulous careers, I am more inspired by the challenges in life that they have overcome and just how real down to earth that to me, reminds of myself and it gives me a glimpse of what I aspire to be someday in this industry.
As women, we have the weight of the world on our shoulders as we are told often and sometimes that weight, can simply be a 75lb child of ours, or us having to make critical decisions that will affect the lives of others, being a phenonomal storyteller as these women are and the pressures to meet deadlines or get ratings on television, the weight can be simply balancing a check book or navigating through online banking app for those of us who long ago throughout the checkbooks and clicked the “Go paperless” tab……now that’s some heavy weight, for any woman. Don’t get me started on monthly budgeting, Jesus just needs to take the wheel now!
I’m not a perfectionist, but I am very passionate about storytelling and have been since my early childhood. I love creating stories and stretching my imagination every now and then and creating stories that I can’t necessarily identify with but that impacts some parts of society as a whole. It has been an amazing year for this women and I salute them for paving the way for us up and coming writers, directors and producers.
One of the wonderful quotes that I often use for motivation daily, are the following:
“Stop asking other people for permission to do what you want to do” – Ava Duvernay
“Who are you today?….That’s who you are.” – Shonda Rhimes
I love the whole less is more theory cause those simple words, to me, gets me through to the bottomline and makes me at ease, navigating through my life. My life is NOT crystal clear! Just as any one else, I face challenges, setbacks, been denied, etc., but I never give up and a lot of what draws people to me, from what I hear, is my realness and my faith in God. I study these women because they have shown me that no matter your skin tone or gender, you can go against the norms in your career, as a parent, accomplishing your goals, or whatever your mind thinks, your mouth speaks and that your energy will transition into the atmosphere, you can do anything!
These women are some real bad-asses and I wouldn’t mind sharing a platform with them one day, while enjoying a glass of red wine and do what we love to do: tell stories. They are definitely some game changes in television and film and I can’t wait to see what’s next for these women (and myself).