Singing Loudly: Writers Block

Singing Loudly

Saturday, March 12, 2005

Writers Block

I'm back at home for a few days at the start of my spring break to visit family a little, see a couple friends, and write. Apparently there is an annual playwright invitational. I’m not sure how it will all be judged in the end, but I think they give you a burger king crown or something if you are the best.

It's fun.

They invite a number of playwrights until they have five who agree to do this. They all convene on this mid-sized city and are given spaces to write, rehearse, and produce a play over the weekend.

There is a pool of actors (most of the college students and a few professional) who are there to help along with directors, stage managers, and other technical support artists.

On Friday night the playwrights are able to get the packet that has a sheet of paper saying about 30 things that have to be in the play. This one has things like "a white picket fence" and "a one legged chicken." From these things each playwright can craft whatever it is that they want. Most of the playwrights spend the first night writing.

I slept. Actually, I slept in the city of my law school and didn't wake up until 9am when I drove back home. That means that I got here in the mid-afternoon when most of the playwrights were putting final touches on their plays.

Oh well.

I spent about 6 hours today writing until I came up with about 90 pages of a very workable script. I just finished selecting my cast and found a director who I think understands how odd this play is and is willing to work with me on it. It's strange indeed.

I've got a pretty cool space to work on this. Right now there are three actors who are busy memorizing lines. They have to have all of it ready by Monday afternoon. Tomorrow I'll work a lot with the director on blocking, fixing problems in the script, and trying to help coach the actors in motivations, histories, etc of the characters.

There is one playwright who is of decent repute doing it this year. The other three are unknown to me. I shouldn't be too worried about being harsh as a female playwright (who I don't know) mentioned to me that she had seen something I wrote and thought it came from the mind of an idiot savant.

Personally I prefer dolt.


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