My last post was about being prepared for success, in an emotional sense. I used actor Thomas G. Waites as an example of someone who wasn't ready for it when it came knocking. In this post, I'm going to go with a more extreme example of this, Troy Duffy. Never heard of him? He's a writer/director who made headlines when he sold a screenplay for a whole lot of money. It was a big deal at the time and I remember hearing about it from friends who didn't even follow the movie business. But I forgot all about the story until I happened upon the documentary, Overnight (2003). This movie chronicles what happened to Duffy after he made this deal of a lifetime. In short, he became an insufferable, arrogant jerk. The movie is basically 80 minutes of Duffy smoking, drinking, bragging about his genius, yelling at his friends and people in the movie industry who he should have been working with. What you never see him doing is writing. Frankly, it was hard for me to watch someone being handed the chance of a lifetime and responding by flushing it down the toilet. Talk about being unprepared. The good news is that Duffy finally did get his movie made, but at a huge cost. And all these years later, his career has never recovered. And I bet it never will.
So, are you emotionally ready? It's an important question and you better know the answer. Because if it comes knocking and you're not, it's better to not answer the door.