Sam Jones

Sam Jones is a leading author in the new genre of "Nostalgia Noir." His debut book, "The Fever Dream" has been critically well received. Other book and film projects include: "88" and "The Last Savage”

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A dose of inspiration


Recently, I turned 30. And yes, I know, I look younger than I really am. Thank you for noticing.

What I was surprised to discover was I didn't have that "quarter-life crisis" moment that many people allegedly experience when they're creeping up on the big "three-oh." The moment just kind of came and went and despite a ruckus of a good time eating, drinking, and laughing it up with my family in the Windy City, turning 30 just kind of... happened.

Great lead-in to a blog post about inspiration, am I right? Well, I haven't gotten to the point yet, so just hold your horses and go along for the ride. 

What stood out about being 30 was something a bit more specific, a gift I received, courtesy of my ever-patient and strikingly beautiful girlfriend. This one particular item she gave me (along with a killer pair of shoes and a Westworld mug, thanks boo) tapped directly into my silly little lizard brain and had me geeking out for a solid two days.

The gift?

"TERMINATOR VAULT": The Complete Story Behind The Making Of The Terminator And Terminator 2: Judgement Day.

I bet your Nerd Alert Radar just broke, didn't it?

I gotta tell you, I've been collecting books like these since I was a little kid, and ever time I scour through one I find myself reminded of exactly why I thoroughly enjoy and thrive off of being a writer. It injected a much-needed shot of inspiration directly into my creative core, more specifically the interviews with director James Cameron about his rough start with filmmaking and the moments of confusion and self-doubt that all creative people have experienced on more than one occasion. 

The entire book condenses the entire making of the Terminator saga and all the ups and downs that come with the creative process. It reminded me of how easy it is to forget that the entire creative process is a giant, confusing, exhilarating, exhausting, emotional-tolling rollercoaster ride that requires just as many bad moments as good ones to achieve that dream you first thought up in your head.

I love the Terminator franchise (save for 3, parts of Salvation, and not a single frame of Genisys. I mean, good God, man...), and reading through Ian Nathan's recapping of the madness that ensued to create such a franchise on my 30th birthday once again instilled that child-like fascination with the creative process and the love I have for a kick-ass story.

There is no message with this blog, no moment of catharsis; no plead to cancel the seemingly endless cacophony of unnecessary movie reboots (maybe on next week's blog). If anything, this was just a quick love letter from a lifelong fan of cinema and great storytelling and the acknowledgment that my drive to continue writing and consuming good story is a fire that is still burning bright.