Peculiarity: How It Informs My Writing

To me, the descriptor “peculiar” isn't a pejorative; it’s a commendation. Furthermore, confidence in one's peculiarity is powerful because it breeds authenticity, and authenticity resonates.

As a Creative at Watts, I've successfully pitched concepts and scripts internally and to clients because my creative process is rooted in "the peculiar."  I research and contemplate till I identify each client’s unique message—how and why that client’s brand distinctively adds value to people’s lives.  I then strive to give voice to it, confidently, feeling free to run with the message wherever it takes me.  Then, after I've run to the various places that truly excite me; no matter how odd, philosophical, or daring they may be; I boldly share my ideas, revise them, and defend them.

Below are some of the concepts and scripts I have developed while working at Watts:




1) Better Together

In late 2013, Microsoft OneNote tasked Watts with creating a video advertisement informing the public of the linked functionality that OneNote and the Bing Food and Drink App share.  I wrote the following script for this assignment.  I based the script on one of my central beliefs: If people aren’t good at something, it's not because they are incapable of becoming proficient at it, it’s because they are uniformed on how to become proficient at it.  The goal of this script was to show, in a humorous and relatable way, that OneNote and the Bing Food and Drink App empower all users—even the seemingly incapable ones—to become experts by helping them easily gather, organize, and share important information.



Original Script:

This is Brandon and Becca Richardson.

And this is Brandon’s family, the Richardsons

--every member of which would promptly inform you that Brandon and Becca can’t cook.
But they’d add that it’s not so much that Brandon and Becca can’t cook...

as it is that they don’t know...

what to cook,
how to cook,
what to pair
what to get,
what this is,
what that is,
just how much,
when it’s time.

But they are all wrong.

Because this season, Brandon and Becca CAN cook.
This season, they know
what to cook,
how to cook,
what to pair
what to get,
what this is,
what that is,
just how much,
when it’s time,
and what to say:

“Why yes, we did make that...”



Visual Description of the Original Concept:


Final Video:

It won an IAC award for Best Marketing Online Ad.



2) In the Beginning

In the summer of 2014, OneNote asked Watts to create a back-to-school video that would excite students about OneNote’s digital handwriting capabilities. In brainstorming possible concepts for the video, it occurred to me that digital handwriting technology is the positive result of the ongoing human struggle between individuality and efficiency.  Handwriting satisfies our desire for individuality, but lacks efficiency and security.  Word processors offer efficient search, duplication, collaboration, and backup tools at the expense of the personal touch.  I wrote the following script to demonstrate that OneNote’s digital handwriting capabilities provide the best of both worlds by allowing users to uniquely and efficiently document their thoughts.


Original Script:

In the beginning,
we learnt to write,
to leave our distinct marks and impressions.
But then we felt the limitations--
thoughts gone with the wind, information lost, trapped.
So, we replaced the distinctive with the efficient.
Left it.
And rightfully so.
But the dream was always that technology would transform our how and our why.
That technology would one day free us...
to be ourselves,



Final Video:



3) Forward

In the spring of 2014, OneNote approached Watts about creating a primary launch video for an upcoming release of OneNote.  To create a video that would resonate deeply with viewers while also imparting the immense value of OneNote, I explored how OneNote meets the needs of its users.

I began by asking how OneNote helps improve peoples’ lives; this question very quickly led me to deliberate what people really want in life, and why.  After much thought, I determined that, while people often believe that what they really want out of life is money, what they actually want is what money makes possible: others’ respect for their thoughts; the ability to spend their time as they choose; and connecting with, enjoying, and feeling loved by the people around them.  I wrote the following script to reflect that OneNote empowers people to make the most of their most precious assets: their thoughts, their time on this earth, and their connections with others, arguing that doing so leads to freedom and progress.

I also purposefully wrote the script in a way that would enable us (the Watts production team) to visually show how the OneNote product’s own advancements are an example of the innovation possible in an atmosphere where people make the most of their thoughts, time, and connections.



Original Script:

Humans, is it scary to know that our most precious assets are gifts that can be taken away?


Not if we cherish them.

Not if we cherish our thoughts...
and keep them documented and safe from spring cleaning mistakes, freak accidents, and excuses.

Not if we cherish our time….
and spend it creating the new instead of searching for or deciphering the old
spend it starting from scratch because we want to, not because we have to.

Not if we cherish our connections...
their thoughts, their input, their feedback, their schedule, their marks upon our lives.

The crazy thing is that when we cherish our most precious assets, we are free

... free to move forward.
(OneNote hero shot)



Final Video:

The final video is currently the featured video for all non-Mac users on the official OneNote site:

It can also be seen via this link:



4) All-New OneNote

In the summer of 2013, OneNote hired Watts to create a launch video for its fall release.  After hearing OneNote’s goals for the launch video and extensively researching the product's offerings, I decided to write a script that explicitly discussed OneNote’s value.  Drawing, in part, from my own experiences as an artist who has lost many ideas over the years, I wrote a script that conveyed that OneNote helps its users harness their ideas’ full potential by allowing them to easily capture, organize, and develop their precious thoughts.


Original Script:

Remember the revolutionary idea you had? Or that life-changing discovery you made? Nope?
Well, it's time to harness the immense potential of your unique thoughts and discoveries with OneNote, your own digital notebook.

With OneNote, capture your thoughts of genius, your raw emotion, and your inspiration, as you find them, or as they find you.
Photograph your reference images on your phone.
Jot down your elevator pitch on your tablet.
Record your tune.
Sketch out your flying machine.

Then, retrieve those discoveries and ideas anywhere, on any device, when you're ready for them or they're ready for you ….like just before your deadline!
Collaborate, organize, polish, and execute!
Your discoveries are not an accident. Your thoughts are not disposable.

Harness the full potential of YOU, with OneNote.


Final Video:

The final video was featured on a variety of blogs and Youtube as well as within the iOS and Google Play App Stores.