After three years of intense focus on therapy and personal growth, I'm finally hitting the keys again and will be jumping into NaNoWriMo on November 1st, 2016. Stay tuned for updates!

Tuesday 23 July 2013

Art Thief Philosophy Moment #1 - The Game of Life

The tricky thing about the Game of Life is that those that are playing to win, rarely do.  They focus on amassing the most stuff, but it is the person that amasses the most happiness that actually wins.  With our culture, we have equated things with happiness, but this is false.  It is a trick of the game.  The man who can be happy with very little will find the most happiness.  No one is keeping score at the end.  It is the joy we amass along the way.  The deeds we do for others.  The love we spread through the world.  Those are the things the amount to much in this game.  Those who keep their heads down and race forward miss the beauty of the sky.  They are constantly reaching for the road immediately ahead of them, but that road never changes and never ends.  The road to happiness is hidden among the stars and only by sitting very still and looking up will you ever find it.

Monday 22 July 2013

Loneliest Girl in the World

You've put me in a cage
Locked me away
I'm the loneliest girl in the world

Cast aside
Without a friend
I'm the loneliest girl in the world

I'm a savage
I'm an animal
I live for survival

Don't draw near
My claws are out
I will bite

No one sees
No one knows
I'm the loneliest girl in the world

Nothing I do
Can ever show
I'm the loneliest girl in the world

I scream
I shout
I claw
I bite
I tear
And rage
And explode

I'm the loneliest girl in the world

Where do I go
Whatever I do
I'm still the loneliest girl in the world

Will anyone ever see
Can you know
Stop and look
Won't you please
See the loneliest girl in the world.

Friday 19 July 2013

9 Things I Learned About Having a Play Produced

Recently, I had the privilege to work with some amazing artists on the production of Empty Boxes, a play I wrote back in 2006.  This was the first time my solo work was being produced and we were doing it completely on our own accord.  Naturally, we had some major learning moments presented to us along the way.  In the spirit of this blog, here are the things I learned working as a playwright:

This is probably the most important of these lessons.  Before you start into the process, you should sit down with your director and review the script and each of your individual visions for the piece.  You absolutely have to be on the same page as your director from the beginning; if not, you are begging for conflict later in the process.  Make sure that you are clear about important moments during these initial conversations (especially if those moments are happening in stage directions).  The director may not stage them exactly as you had in your mind, but if they know the meaning behind why you wrote it like that, they can stay true to the essence of the action.  This type of understanding can only come out of in-depth discussions without the other artists in the room.  Having these conversations early will also develop the relationship and dialogue for giving notes about the piece during the rehearsal process.

“No one knows the script better than you” was advice I received from Jason Sherman and through the process of Empty Boxes, I learned the truth of that statement.  In my day job as a stage manager, it is a cardinal sin to give your opinion about the direction of a piece (without being asked directly by the director, and even then, you walk a fine line).  Keeping my mouth shut during the rehearsal process is a trait that in heavily engrained in my soul, so flipping over to the side of the playwright, where my opinion not only expected, but necessary, was difficult (to say the least).  There were times during the process that I didn’t fight as hard as I should have for specific things that I wrote in, thinking that the director had his vision and I should respect that.  I didn’t want to over step my bounds.  But, the tricky thing with a new work is that for the first time out, the audience is expecting to see the playwright’s vision more than the director’s.  They don’t know the show, so they think this is what the playwright wrote; so as the playwright, if there is something that doesn’t sit well with you , it is your job to stand up and say so.  This doesn’t need to be a confrontation, but you can explain why something is important to the arc of the story.  Which brings me to...