We launched Season 2 of Starting From … Now! on Tuesday night. This meant not only releasing the first episode online, but also holding a launch party where we screened the first three episodes of the season for cast and crew, family and friends, industry and press. It was a great night.
I must say, though, I was extremely nervous leading up to it, even more so than when we launched Season 1. When we released Season 1 back in March there weren’t any expectations. In fact, no-one outside of those who worked on it and their immediate circles even knew it existed. It was a case of putting it out there and hoping for the best. This time was different. This time there were people anticipating its arrival, people with expectations and opinions on what should happen and who should do what. This time I felt a great deal more pressure to deliver. In hindsight, that’s a good pressure to have. It’s better that people have high expectations than none at all. It’s better that they’re anticipating its arrival than not even knowing it exists.
And it nearly didn’t exist. When I first set out to make this web series, I hadn’t planned on making a second season. I thought I’d make one season and then move onto another project. But then something happened. It was the day after we’d wrapped. I remember returning some of the gear we’d borrowed for the shoot, hauling it through the streets of Sydney. I was exhausted. I’d hardly slept, we’d just come off a ten-day shoot and the gear was really heavy but I couldn’t stop thinking about what would happen next. What happens later that day, that week, when Darcy goes home, when Steph next sees Emily, when Kristen finds out? It kept nagging at me. I wanted to know, just as much as anyone else. So I went home and wrote it and there was Season 2. It sounds flippant to say it like that and I wish writing was that easy, but for some reason, these episodes came to me more easily than anything else I’ve ever written. It’s like they were already there, just waiting to come out.
I was extremely lucky that the actors were available and willing to make a second season. It would have been impossible to do it without them and I fully believe that it was because of them these characters wouldn’t leave me alone. They’re the ones who brought them to life. They’re the ones that made them more than just words on a page.
Of course, it didn’t end there. There were months of hard work by a lot of different people before Season 2 actually came into existence. But that’s why we have launch nights and parties, because it is hard work. It’s long hours, it’s stressful, and a lot of people don’t get paid. It’s also extremely tenuous. No-one knows if the project you’ve just poured your heart and soul into is even going to find an audience. That’s why we need to celebrate when we can. And, given the response we received on the night, it feels like there’s something about this second season that’s worth celebrating.
By Julie Kalceff