Saturday, April 30, 2022

Process LXIV

May 2021
Last year I made a good decision which seemed a little stupid at the time; I took a summer class. It didn’t occur to me that sixteen weeks of instruction would be condensed into six, and what that would mean. Thank goodness we did not have a theater camp, or journeys planned, or what was merely very challenging would have been impossible.

As a result, however, I do not need to take any classes this summer. I need two more classes, which I will take next fall. Then my thesis, then I am done. That is a year from now, and yet. I mean, wow.

Now, can I turn my focus outward for a little while. There is housework to be done, some projects that have waited for more time and good weather. Physical and mental health. I do not have any plays scheduled for development or production any time in the near future. That can be a downer.

Free your mind. Hang onto your ego.

Friday, April 29, 2022

On Solo Performance

Clyde Jevne in "One-Man Hamlet"
(Theatre Inconnu, 2011)
The best production of Hamlet I have ever seen was a solo performance created by Dr. Clayton Jevne, Founding Artistic Director of Theatre Inconnu (Victoria, British Columbia). Titled One-Man Hamlet, it was one of the several productions I attended at the Minnesota Fringe in 2003.
“... Nick, Denny and I went to see One-Man Hamlet at Bryant-Lake. That kicked ass, the man is a freak, and not only that, but a Canadian freak and we sat in the dark eating cheeseburgers and drinking pints of Summit and watching this guy charge around the stage with music stands with balloons on them representing all the different characters, it was a whoot.” - I Hate This Blog, 8/9/2003
The cheeseburger was only part of what made it special. The Bryant-Lake Bowl in Minneapolis is a bar and grill, bowling alley and cabaret theater all under one roof. We’d placed orders before the show and fifteen minutes in, a server brought my dish and it was passed down to me by friendly audience members.

"I Hate This (a play without the baby)"
(Red Eye Theatre, 2003)
I wasn’t the only one served. This is totally a thing that they do at Bryant-Lake.
“... Denny and I are going to see Heretic [a solo performance by Niki McCretton] this evening at 6. Toni got to see [Staggering Toward America, a solo performance by Rik Reppe] this afternoon ... and I did my last performance.” - I Hate This Blog, 08/10/2003
That would be my last performance for I Hate This. My trip to Minnesota nineteen years ago was the first time I brought my solo performance on stillbirth to an audience of almost complete strangers.
“Forty people in the house, a strong Sunday afternoon showing … Clayton the One-Man Hamlet man was in the house, and his lovely wife. Our midwife's daughter made the show! And there were rumors ... maybe Matthew Everett made it (and his mom) [more on that here]. I am grateful for the attention.” - I Hate This Blog, 08/10/2003
The solo performance is a particular kind of drama, but it can be so many different things. Ten years or so ago there were several traveling shows in which one guy would tell all of The Lord of the Rings or the entire Harry Potter saga in a single evening, which is a kind of parody. It’s for the fans, but it’s also meant to be hilarious.

Jevne’s One-Man Hamlet is much more than that. It is very funny, to be sure. But he’s playing something like an addled street performer with the least expensive props possible and what is remarkable is how he just keeps going, playing all the characters, telling the entire story. 

My favorite part is how he takes all of those moments that a character describes something that happened in the recent past (Ophelia telling her father what Hamlet did in her closet, Hamlet telling Horatio about the pirates) by opening a foot locker pulling out puppets and miniatures.

Sometimes a solo performance is in the service of a familiar tale, like Jevne’s, or when we saw local artist Terry Canendonk perform I Dreamed of Rats, his adaptation of the Inspector General. Or it is autobiographical, like Reppe’s Staggering Toward America, in which he told the true story of his journey across the nation after 9/11. He becomes the people he met along the way, but it’s no different than a good friend telling a great yarn over a fire. There’s a personal connection necessary in these kinds of performances, and Reppe’s personality was big and he embraced the crowd with it.

Nina Domingue
"The Amazing and Absolutely True Adventures
of Ms. Joan Evelyn Southgate"
(Cleveland Public Theare, 2002)
While we’re on the subject of solo shows I saw almost in Minnesota almost two decades ago, Heretic was yet another kind of one person performance, a play with one character, and little or no text. Utilizing video, a big open stage and a large aquarium, McCretton is a woman who has been exiled to the surface of the moon for the crime of having religious belief, and may not return until she has filled the fish tank with her tears.

It’s a flex, standing on stage, by yourself, for an hour or so. You are the only person holding the attention of an entire audience.

My good friend Nina Domingue has written and performed several solo shows, most recently The Amazing and Absolutely True Adventures of Ms. Joan Evelyn Southgate, which opened to a full house at Cleveland Public Theatre last weekend. Watching Nina play is a masterclass in catching and keeping an audience, not only skilled in portraying all manner of characters, but also staying in tune with and reacting to the assembled.

I have written and performed two solo shows. This spring I have been writing an essay, meant to be read aloud, about my mother’s death, called Falling. I have no idea what I might do with it, though I am glad to have written it.

Thursday, April 28, 2022

End of Play (Week Four)

Yeah, so. #EndOfPlay. I charged into this month fired up to get a lot of writing done. And I did it. The past week I have really wound down, relaxing, taking care of other business. Also, we have residency auditions coming soon. Also, the semester is almost over. Also, this. Also, that.

Scenes From a Night’s Dream: Following the first reading I took the opportunity to expand several moments in the second act. More clarity, more context, more history. Language and slang.

Next Monday this will be read, this slightly revised first draft. I am excited for that!

Falling: Tuesday night we were sent to breakout rooms to workshop our illness narrative, and I received helpful observations from two classmates, one who I only recently met and another who is familiar with my work because he is another playwright.

It was suggested I employ a central metaphor. But there is a central metaphor - the title, falling - but I never included it. That, and many other suggestions will be employed this weekend. Then I will record the entire thing to video.

The Wytches: Work on this script has been interrupted, until I can engage a few more of the participants of last month’s workshop. I believe I will be able to resume in May.

And that’s all she wrote! Pens down.

Monday, April 25, 2022

Scenes From a Night's Dream: First Reading

dissociation n. the disconnection or separation of something from something else or the state of being disconnected. In psychiatry: separation of normally related mental processes, resulting in one group functioning independently from the rest, leading in extreme cases to disorders such as multiple personality.
No matter the project, be it for a writers group, as a commission, or the final project for one of MFA classes, I will hold a pre-reading reading with a cadre of close friends and colleagues to hear it in a safe space. Last fall that was in my living room, a year before that via Zoom. But it always happens.

Sunday night a delightful crew of friends (not an unsurprising amount either present or former actor-teachers) gathered on our patio, in perfect weather, to read Scenes From a Night’s Dream.

Random thoughts: Given all the messed up things that happen, some people were most upset by the dead goldfish. “The party downstairs” also set some on edge. The second act is too short (my opinion) which affords the opportunity to address some confusion as to what the company - "Morpheus" - actually does.

New rules:
When holding a post-reading discussion (or in fact, the talkback following the workshop of a new work) the playwright must not answer any questions. You’ll never learn anything about how your play works if you do.

We started and I immediately got one question directed to me and I said, Oh. I’m not answering any questions. What followed was something like forty-five minutes of the assembled going over everything that had just happened.

The disconnect, the dissociation, the dream.

Last fall I mentioned how Mark Ravenhill was sharing 101 tips on playwriting over Twitter. That has developed into the 37 Plays podcast sponsored by the Royal Shakespeare Company where he interviews other playwrights and they discuss their own tips on writing. 

This week, writer and director Chinonyerem Odimba brought up Ravenhill’s Tip #12: There’s something cruel about constructing a play, putting characters in situations that are everything from awkward to very painful. Don’t shy from this cruelty but use it responsibly, explore all its ramifications and don’t use it cynically or for effect. 

This is a thing. I don’t normally indulge in cruelty in my plays. Or not since The Vampyres, anyway. And yet, I failed to provide any kind of content warning as we began reading. I immediately regretted that as we started reading. Sometimes people make light of or in fact scorn or ridicule such advance warning, but those people are children.

Now, I have a page of notes and an entire week to tweak the script before we read it in class. So glad!

UPDATE: A workshop of "Scenes From a Night's Dream" will be presented as part of the 2023 NEOMFA Playwrights Festival at Convergence-Continuum, February 16, 17 & 18, 2023.

Saturday, April 23, 2022

Process LXIII

Mary Todd Lincoln
(William H. Mumler, c. 1870)
As the semester winds to a close, I am confident in how well things have proceeded. I lost an entire week due to illness, and yet I am ahead of the homework game. I needed to complete at least 120 hours for my teaching internship, and I think I passed that finish line sometime, I don’t know. Today.

That was a difficult new work to bring to the finish line. I had a big, long cry in the shower after it was completed. That was a surprise. I haven’t cried like that in years. Not for two years. I was alone then, too.

As the semester winds down, I become wistful about online education. I have really enjoyed my illness narrative class; we have been covering a wide variety of often very affecting material. And in spite of our Zoom assemblage, I have become attached to this collection of students. They are all unique, compassionate, quirky, shepherded by our wonderful professor. I’ve loved this class, even though we have been attending from our personal spaces.

Then again, my personal space is a couch in front of a fire during the chilly Ohio months. Would I prefer traveling a half hour to get to a cinder block room downtown. I imagine not.

I will graduate in a year, and yet we are almost through. No classes this summer, fall quarter, next spring is all about the thesis. What will be my motivation to create, when there are no assignments with deadlines? Two plays a year, for two years. It’s a big deal.

And my brain, the reading, how will I keep up? When someone chucks a book at you and says read it, then write about it, then we’re gonna talk about it, that’s amazing. You make associations across narratives, connections between classes, and over the years.

Yesterday, reading Out of Nowhere Into Nothing by Caryl Pagel, I learned about William Mumler, so-called spirit photographer. He let people believe that his double exposed images revealed the ghosts who accompany us, watch over us, and comfort us. It’s bogus, of course, but it feeds the imagination. Tuesday night I had a dream that I was visited by the ghosts of my parents; they were dead, in my dream, I knew that. These were their spirits. It was a revelation. It was sad, it was also an adventure.

(Later she quotes Roy Scranton’s book Learning To Die in the Anthropocene, which was assigned to me in a different class this semester, another example of my current educational experience answering back to itself. Are there really so few books? Is the world smaller than we believe it is?)

I need to write about ghosts. Like, literally, that’s the next thing I need to do, write a few scenes with ghosts in them.

Thursday, April 21, 2022

End of Play (Week Three)

Apparently the best thing for a writer is to have a serious cold. The second week of #EndOfPlay I got hella writing completed. Then I got well, went to Athens for a visit with our eldest, have been suffering headaches and insomnia and generally feeling uninspired and unhappy.

I want the weather to turn. I want to set up the porch and the deck and move my writing outdoors. I want to run.

And yet, work was completed. Here’s the rundown.

Falling (a monologue): Completed edits, turned in my assignment which was due Tuesday. Next week the piece will get workshopped in class. Once I create a final draft, I will begin recording videos of myself reading the text to accompany the assignment.

The Wytches: Not a lot of work on this this past week. I need to write two ghost scenes which talk to each other and reflect the present. They must reflect the present.

Scenes From a Night’s Dream: This was the big accomplishment this week, and it came not without a certain number of tears. My schoolmate (who has not yet read the ending) said the other day that she thinks it’s the best thing I’ve yet written for workshop. She might be right. I have avoided writing about myself in class, it’s the same old: who cares about my issues?

I have scheduled a reading with friends for this weekend. I have successfully held a pre-workshop reading every semester I’ve had a new play. It helps me attend the workshop itself with confidence. I have great friends.

End of Play.® is an annual initiative, created by the Dramatists Guild, to incentivize the completion of new plays, scores, or songs over the period of one month.

Saturday, April 16, 2022

Process LXII

Received some wonderful news this week; I am a recipient of the Leonard Trawick Scholarship! Earlier this year I applied, including the first ten pages of my unproduced script No One Wants To Work Anymore.
The Leonard Trawick Scholarship was established to assist Cleveland State University students in creative writing and/or English and to honor Dr. Leonard Trawick for his dedication to the Poetry Center.
This is the first time I have ever received a merit-based, academic scholarship, and I am dead chuffed.

This week I have also been ill. It’s just a nasty, springtime cold. Every Covid test has proved negative, but it’s kept me out of public. I was able to use the day on Monday to finally break through and produce the first fifteen pages of the second act of my new work for the playwrights workshop.

We read these pages that night, and I was heartened by the fact that certain members of the class were even more unsettled by the second act than the first. That took some doing. And now the scenes are flowing freely. Maybe too freely.

Every scene feels more dangerous than the last. The complete, in-class reading is scheduled for two weeks from Monday. For my last two scripts I have had friends read it before the class gets to it. A fire pit may be in order. God, I love the Spring!

Thursday, April 14, 2022

End of Play (Week Two)

The reason working on these three different scripts is working is (I believe) because they are each a different kind of process, using a different part of my creativity.

One is purely generative, brand new. New characters, new ideas, new plot.

One is from original source material; a journal. I am not writing, so much as reshaping unedited thoughts into something more coherent and cohesive.

One is an existing piece which I am entirely retyping, and editing in chronological order based on my experience with having produced it as a workshop.

I can procrastinate working on one by working on another. Or doomscrolling Twitter.

The Wytches: Working in order, from beginning to end, retyping the entire script. Sections that need to be entirely rewritten I am skipping, and will come back to those. Not a surprise, they are all scenes that take place in the past.

Scenes From a Night’s Dream: I was very pleased when my professor mentioned Caryl Churchill’s Top Girls when discussing the new pages for this piece. The first act is a dream, it follows dream logic, but characters are introduced and something like change occurs for the protagonist.

The great Japanese animator Hayao Miyazaki was originally on the team that produced the film Little Nemo: Adventures In Slumberland, but was dissatisfied with the entire project. One of his main issues was that a dream is not real, and therefore holds no consequence, for anyone, including the dreamer. “A film that professes to be set in a dream world will only make the audience blank out.,” said Miyazaki

When I wrote a stage adaptation of Little Nemo for children, I took this challenge head on. There are three dream sequences (he wakes up twice in the night, it is, after all, Christmas Eve) and each time he learns something about himself and wakes with a fresh awareness.

The first act for my new work is also a dream, and then the audience is presented with a real world setting and situation, and they may be confused at first how the second act relates to the first. This is why Top Girls is relevant, as the first act is a coming together of women from throughout history for a luncheon. Only the host, the founder of a women’s employment agency, continues through the rest of the play, which is based in reality.

One revelation in the second act is, who is the dreamer? The actor who plays the boy (who for the moment I am calling Nemo) in the first act has not yet been seen. He will be, I promise. That doesn’t mean he is the dreamer.

Falling (new working title): I have transcribed those elements of the notebooks I kept while my mother lay dying which are relevant. They are written in present tense, as though they are diary entries from over the course of two months. Having set myself on this project, I am pleased so far that I was even able to do it. I had no idea what I would find in these notebooks. I was surprised by what was there. I was surprised by what was not there. My wife is looking it over, not only for style but also for errors. I want it to be accurate.

No, It was not easy to read these notebooks.

End of Play.® is an annual initiative, created by the Dramatists Guild, to incentivize the completion of new plays, scores, or songs over the period of one month.

Saturday, April 9, 2022

"Dog Act" at convergence-continuum

Denise Astorino in "Dog Act"
(convergence-continuum, 2022)
There is something about the apocalypse. I can’t watch the gruesome fantasy of a horror film, but there is something about certain tales of life post-civilization that I find thrilling, and in a way, comforting. Within any post-apocalyptic narrative is the supposition that humanity will endure. It may be painful, terrifying, and unspeakably difficult. But at least there is hope.

This week we were assigned Learning To Die in the Anthropocene (Reflections on the End of Civilization) by Roy Scranton. This book about the calamitous effects of global climate change offers no hope at all, at least not for humanity. That it is a rumination on the possibility of acceptance, that is the best it can offer.

Last night, my son and I went to see Dog Act by Liz Duffy Adams and directed by David L. Munnell at convergence-continuum. It’s about a small cohort of survivors in a future when the seasons can abruptly change from winter to summer in a snap. Our protagonists are a charming duo of scavenging vaudevillians who can sing and act, and speak in a rapid-fire patois of contemporary turns of phrases which have mutated far beyond their original meaning.

One of the more enjoyable aspects of this production is that the players (within the play) are actually talented, and that their brief performances (with the larger performance) are entertaining, amusing, and even affecting. Evidence of the lasting value and significance of live performance.

"Mister Burns, A Post-Electric Play"
(Cleveland Public Theatre, 2016)
This was bizarrely not the case in the HBO miniseries adaptation of Emily St. John Mandel’s novel Station Eleven. I am a fan of the book, and I really enjoyed the program (especially Himesh Patel as Jeevan Chaudhary, whose character is radically changed from the book into the character with the most affecting character arc) but I was dumbfounded by the actual performances of Shakespeare, which were unfortunately soporific.

Six years ago, Cleveland Public Theatre produced Mr. Burns, A Post-Electric Play by Anne Washburn and Michael Friedman, which is something of a lightning rod among my friends, several of whom do not like that play at all. I thought it was pretty incredible, the absurd conceit of the enduring mythos of certain animated television programs and the power of human storytelling, as folks produce stage adaptations of The Simpsons in a lawless and violent wasteland.

This year has been quite the existential hoot so far, viewing a stage production of Last Ship to Proxima Centauri (more on that), and reading Voices from Chernobyl by Svetlana Alexievich for class at the same time Russian troops have been using this most radioactive place on earth as a staging area for the invasion of nearby Kyiv, Ukraine, digging up radioactive material and presumably carrying it with them in their bones.

Friday, April 8, 2022

Process LXI

Last Saturday I wrote a lot. I had a big, empty day and filled it with work. Occasionally I took time off to interact with social media, maybe do a little housework. I’m not good at spending long hours just writing, but here’s the trick: I wasn’t writing only one thing.

I was editing The Wytches – yes, I’m going with that title for the rewrite – I was editing my notebooks about mom’s illness, I was ruminating on Phil Collins, I was imagining the second act of Scenes From a Night’s Dream (the working title and not by coincidence also a song by Genesis) and finally writing the response to a poetry reading I had attended a month ago.

Moving from project to project, I was able to accomplish a little with each of them. If I had concentrated on just one, I don’t believe I would have made much headway at all. What does that make me? An amateur diagnosis would attempt to ascribe any number of neurological variances, at my age I am not interested in knowing about any of them. I am happy to have figured out what works for me.

So, what will this weekend bring? I have a book to read and to write a response for, but I also have a goal of creating at least 20 new pages for my workshop. I think I can get that done before Monday night. Right? If only I didn’t have this freaking headache.

Thursday, April 7, 2022

End of Play (Week One)

Because I have to be so completely extra, I am not working on a script for #EndOfPlay but three scripts.
End of Play.® is an annual initiative, created by the Dramatists Guild, to incentivize the completion of new plays, scores, or songs over the period of one month.
Every day I am producing several pages. It’s crazy! I am currently crazed!

The Wytches: I am not only editing the piece, I am retyping the entire thing. As I type, I can hear the voices of the actors who performed the workshop last month, and am able to incorporate their subtle (and not so subtle) changes in syntax. Also, I have plentiful notes to work from. Having written the original script piecemeal, redrafting in order from start to finish allows me to be more aware of repetition inherent in the original draft.

Scenes From a Night’s Dream
: The first act just rolled out, no outline, just a stream of consciousness thing which coalesced rather neatly. The second act stopped me short for over a week, but Ikept writing ideas if not dialogue. This weekend I was able to situate the second act in place, define the characters, imagine something like an outline, and scene work started arriving yesterday. Huzzah!

The Notebook (working title): No, I’m not calling it The Notebook, nor am I calling it Mother. Transcribing and editing these notebooks from late 2019 and early 2020 is of course very affecting for me. When I drop the next big section for my classmates to workshop (due in two weeks) I have to make clear what I would like them to look for.

Monday, April 4, 2022

Phil Collins

“I think Invisible Touch was the group's undisputed masterpiece. It's an epic meditation on intangibility. At the same time, it deepens and enriches the meaning of the preceding three albums. Christy, take off your robe.” - Patrick Bateman, “American Psycho” (2000)
Peter Gabriel & Phil Collins
Friday, April 1, 2022
If you were to ask anyone in my graduating class who was the biggest Phil Collins fan, they might tell you it was me. If there was a time to be a fan of Phil Collins, it would be exactly those years in which I was in high school (1982-1986).

Last Friday night, Phil played his last concert with Genesis at the O2 in London. Peter Gabriel was in the audience. He played these farewell gigs seated in a chair, the last decade or so he has been affected by a variety of nerve injuries, and from all appearances lives with a great deal of pain. And yet, there he was. Doing the work. Singing, anyway. He hasn’t been able to play the drums in years.

Phil Collins appealed to me for a number of personal reasons. Because he was a drummer, he is British, his wardrobe was basic and easily appropriated, and because he wrote songs about mature relationships that were in trouble.

Perhaps it speaks to my own youthful escapades in romantic self-sabotage that at a very young age I had a tender spot for mushy ballads about endless love (Follow You, Follow Me), doo-wop songs about cuckoldry (Misunderstanding) and anthemic showtunes about struggling to maintain doomed relationships through inscrutible, symbolic lyrics and an awful lot of shouting (Behind the Lines).

It was my dad who observed that Phil Collins doesn’t so much sing as he screams, and my father really liked Phil Collins. And so did I. Big fan. I’d dress like him, in suit and tie and Chuck Taylors. This was in the 1980s, when Chucks with a suit was considered transgressive. Goofily transgressive.

I remember getting stoned in the basement of someone’s house in 1983 and they put on the just-released, eponymous release Genesis and heard the song Mama for the first time. That was a dark journey.

As Phil Collins at a 1980s Revival Party
with Debbie Gibson (Beth Stolarczyk)
and Paul Shaffer (Pat Shea)
I remember having a springtime infatuation at the end of my sophomore year, and Against All Odds (Take a Look at Me Now) was powerful validation of my every obsessive nerve ending.

I remember getting the cassette of No Jacket Required the day it dropped in early 1985, and how jazzed I felt hearing Sussudio for the first time. Fuck all that prog rock shit, let’s dance!

And I remember hearing the song Invisible Touch on the radio, shortly before my high school graduation. I thought it was terrible. Uninspired, basic. Even the music video signaled he was just mailing it in.*

The rest of the album, however (also called Invisible Touch) has some of my very favorite songs, and my girlfriend and I listened to them all summer. In Too Deep was a touchstone for our entanglement, Throwing It All Away our destiny foretold. It was clear, however, that the bloom was off the rose for me, even as we were committed to seeing the act at the Coliseum together after we had broken up.

He was an amazing drummer. While he did not sing on Do They Know It’s Christmas, he does play the drums and his signature fill (dun - dah dun - dah dun) is unmistakable. He was also a pioneer in the use of drum machines. The opening to Sussudio is worthy of Prince.

And I had Genesis posters on my wall freshman year in college, though by that time I was really Team Gabriel, and anyway I was at that time being exposed to all that stuff Butthead referred to as “college music”.

Okay, here’s a story. My dad and my ex-girlfriend and I attended the show, as I said, on January 26, 1987. You can listen to a bootleg of the entire show online, there was a live remote that night as they performed Invisible Touch for the AMAs.

When they started playing In Too Deep I announced, “I’m going to the toilet,” and got up and hopped away.

I returned somewhere in the middle of the song. She whispered to me, “How could you leave?”

I said I had to go to the bathroom.

“Yeah,” she said. “But. This song.”

I was a bit defensive, but also smug. I knew what I did. And so began a couple of years of something like dating which would complicate all of my college relationships.

It's just like a song by Phil Collins.

*"Invisible Touch" was the only #1 single Genesis achieved in the United States. I yield to popular opinion. 

Saturday, April 2, 2022

Process LX

Last week I said I was on track to complete my Dream Play. Ha ha, no. I finished the first act this week. That’s right, it is no longer one, ninety minute play. It is now a two-hour piece with an intermission.

The “first draft” is due on Monday. Ha ha, no. That won’t happen. However, I have a much better idea of what will happen. The reading last Monday night was swell. Once more, people appreciate my ability to write dialogue for young people that is neither too advanced nor too childish.

Folks dig the magic, the transgression (my professor loves the word transgression) how the pre-adolescent mind confuses sex with fear, and fear with death. The hormones which are burbling to the surface, and the deep dark secret for which the class is expecting a satisfying revelation.

Ah-hah. Well, yes. That. And that’s why I have fully embraced my wife’s idea of a second scene, and it will be one which both takes us away from the world of the first scene, while at the same time very much in the same world. I can say no more. Let’s just say my inspiration comes from the works of Caryl Churchill (we read Far Away last week) and, as much as I hate to say it, a play I saw once, written by Neil LaBute.

Creating a proposal for my illness narrative was one thing, actually writing it is another. When I say writing it, I really mean editing it. That’s not correct, either. Regardless, I have these notebooks. I have been reading them, and highlighting the relevant parts. It’s what David Sedaris was referring to when he titled his book of diary entries Theft By Finding.

Reading these notebooks makes me emotional. I am not surprised that it could, but I am still surprised that it actually does.

Finally, End of Play, a month of composition and playwriting promoted by the Dramatists Guild of the United States started yesterday, for which I have decided to compose a new draft of The Witches.