Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Assessment

One month into my Fellowship Year I gave an assessment. Looking back it sounds kind of desperate, fearful. Too much lay ahead and I was not sure how I would fare. Writing one essay (if they were essays) a month about Cleveland 1936 trivia did not seem, at the time, to be amounting to much. It did not feel I was getting anywhere.

Since that time I have begun to get hold of the elephant. You know that old the about the blind men describing an elephant? That's this play, this play I have been wanting to write for fifteen years. Thanksgiving was my EUREKA WEEKEND, when I finally understood the shape of the elephant.

I have spent a great deal of time in libraries, read many books. My study has compelled more study. As facts fall upon themselves, actual characters emerge, and they have lives. This is how it works for me. I see them in this place, at that time, and believe they are there.

I have rubbed elbows with fellow travelers, been to far more readings of new plays than before, attended more plays than I have had or made the opportunity to in many years.

I have applied for competitions. I have been invited to apply for competitions. I have produced a play. I have had a play accepted for production. Submissions have been made for publication, and may yet be accepted. Tools have been purchased and utilized. Investments for the future have been made. And the research and preparation for this play has spun off into new and different works which are simultaneously in progress.

A year is a long time to concentrate on your art while at the same time balancing a job, a family, a life. I have received support and comfort from everyone, at home, in my place of employment, among my peers, in pursuing this work.

I am only scratching the surface of what this year has yielded, for now and for the future. And one thing I can definitely say about the Creative Workforce Fellowship is the act of applying and failing to receive a grant on the first go-round has compelled a great many of my peers to push themselves harder to create more and more exciting work to improve their chances of acceptance next year. The positive effects reverberate throughout the community.

I have a month. At the end of this month I will have a draft. Yes I will. I need to schedule a reading.


Cheese.

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