Archive for Collaboration

The End

And in the end, the love you take
Is equal to the love you make

Dan,

Today marks the first time that this name has felt like a weight to write down, not because it’s your name but because writing it feels incredibly final. I delayed finishing this entry as long as possible because there is so much I wish I could say but I don’t want to walk away from this project feeling as if a question was left unanswered. I want it to feel heartfelt and concise, because that’s the imprint the blog is leaving in my life.

This collaboration affected me more than I thought possible, I shared more than I ever intended and became more attached to this link of our friendship than I ever considered possible. We are better friends because of this and I think we can see ourselves more clearly when we reread our own words. What surprises me most though, is that I no longer hide from the hard moments.

T2C allowed me to have an outlet to voice my frustrations with myself and the world around me. It gave me a place to confess fears and hopes and it created a space where I finally acknowledged the pain I have felt and where I wanted to go from there. I am in no way done growing but I am more ready to acknowledge my own vices than I have ever been before.

This blog saw us through two years of consistent growth and lessons learned, it made us honest with what we wanted out of life and in collaboration. We became more patient and open to constructive criticism so we could create something we could look upon and be proud of.

I know our conversation isn’t over, it’s just changing focus and I know that when it comes down to it, your support will not stop when our project is completed. We’ve been through a lot, and you know more about me than most. In the future, we will share victories, obstacles and joyful moments so I choose to mark this as the first dog-eared page in our saga.

No amount of verbose language could properly describe that appreciation I have towards you for helping with the creation of something so completely personal. So I offer you my thanks and my love for saying yes to me that morning in Grand Central Station, though we were stationary in that moment it felt like our journey began.

Planning the next adventure,

Adair

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Happy Trails

Dear Adair,

I find myself lacking the ability to begin a paragraph today. I’ve done this enough times in my life. I do this daily. Tens or hundreds of thousand of paragraphs later and I am stalled. I can’t think where to begin this end. How do you start a goodbye?

When we (unsurprisingly) unanimously brought up the end date for this project, the date seemed symmetrical and convenient. September makes sense since that is when we began. But as the month has come and gone, it has been remarkably challenging to write these final pieces. The deed seems so much more weighted, even though we are beyond practiced at it at this point. But still the end seemed to add stakes to a very low risk idea. These letters between friends became final thoughts in a conversation that has lasted all night but you still cannot end even as the sun begins to rise.

But end it must. The limits to the format and the range of topics we are willing to explore here is becoming clear. New projects have hijacked the creativity this project began to stoke. And like so many productions and rituals from our lives, this too must end.

I’m proud of this blog. It made me write every week, it made me more practiced and made me work at something only for its own sake. I’m pleased that the outcome could be consistent and as polished as we could get it. And I’m glad that the works created were of great enough impact and interest to us to start a second writing endeavor and began plans for others still. The spark it fanned will not be dying in the near future.

But real gain from Tales from Two Cities was not the habitual writing, but the exploration of a friendship. Through all the new discoveries, forgotten connections, hurt feelings, and perceived digital pressure, we know each other better for having embarked on this together. We have shared family history, hidden passions, cursed our shortcomings, and rallied behind our creative strives. Working together on this made the apathy of long distance friendship impossible. We had to talk, and share, and grow. With new works coming together, I know we can be sure of this continued growth as writers and people.

I’d like to say thank you for suggesting we do this. I feel more involved in your life and more connected as an artist because of this. In fact, the community I’ve felt from working with you has rippled out to every corner of my creative life. For your impact, your editing and your friendship, I thank you.

For the last time, but not the last time,

-Danimg_5123

Wake Up

Dan,

The leaves are starting to explode into colors here in the Pacific Northwest thus confirming what I already knew, summer is over. This summer has been particularly busy and eventful for us both, it’s been the end of some things and the start of others and it is remarkable how much things can change in three months let alone this last year.

Looking back to last fall I am overwhelmed by the amount things have changed and the amount we have both transformed as individuals. We have been writing these letters for nearly two years and it’s amazing to see how much we have learned and how we have grown since that first “Dear Dan.”

We have created a collaboration that we both invested time, creativity and energy into and it has opened us up to the beauty of shared ideas. There are so many projects to look forward to this next year with each other, as individuals and with new partners. Working with you these last few years have been the gateway into feeling comfortable embarking on these new endeavors.

I look to the changes I know to be coming, changes in schedules and careers. New adventures both in person and on paper and the ongoing hilarity of my friendship with you.

I hope to continue to grow and support my relationships with friends and family, staying in better touch and creating wonderful memories with the vibrant people who fill my life. I want to continue to write, rewrite and submit the words I feel are so necessary to put down, I hope the despite not having this weekly commitment I remain steadfast in my goal to create.

Most of all I hope to seek out new adventures, to not shy away from what seems unknown or peculiar. I want to leap into experiences that bring me inspiration. I want to love and learn as best as I can and I want to tell whatever story I have to tell.

Hopefully the next year will bring us more experiences than we could ever have fathomed and maybe some of them will be together. No matter what, I know you will be just a call away.

Your partner in crime,

Adair

Maybe This Time

Adair,

It’s odd how January never seems like the new year to me. I’ve mentioned how my birthday is usually my marker for the beginning of a new year, both because July is a more optimistic time than the dead of winter, and it’s in line with my inflated ego to reorient the calendar around me. But there are other moments, my anniversary, the beginning of the school year, and Christmas that also make me pause and think about the year past and the year ahead.

If I had to look ahead right now, I’d be thinking about another year in New York. Another fall that just makes me feel like I’m in When Harry Met Sally, a winter that snows us in just once, a spring that begs for pictures in parks, and another summer sweating in the subway and longing for relief.

The next year is going to see a lot of new projects, and a push like never before to create things on my terms. Working with you has opened me up to working with other partners, and those relationships are beginning to blossom into new ventures that may well be “the project.”

Another year will bring another year of marriage and the wonderful joys and inevitable hurts of a life long partnership. We are also striving to create together, which brings us back to the army days of our friendship working together. This summer’s production of The Last Five Years reminded me of the importance of our creative connection and what beautiful richness that adds to our lives.

My apartment is changing layout and design, I’m changing my diet, having a car is changing our transportation, and the relationships in my life keep changing the creative means I have at my disposal. The next year is going to be one for the record books, no matter how it all turns out.

But why am I looking ahead in the middle of September? What marks this as a moment of reflection and resolve? I’m giving pause right now because in a year we won’t be writing these letters. At the end of this month, we will be finished with this project and moving on to another. I won’t begin to tackle what that means in this letter, but I know that whatever comes next, we’ll still be bothering each other about it every week.

Same time next year?

-Dan