I've been doing a pretty crummy job of posting regularly on this blog. Mostly just because I've been too busy. But I'm going to resolve to try to post at least a weekly update, every week, for a while, letting folks know what's up.
So, my writing life, lately:
What I've been writing:
I spent quite a few hours last week and this week, writing some cell phone plays that are part of a project that the Huntington Theatre is working on with the Huntington Playwriting Fellows. These will be a tiny part of a big new works festival sponsored by the Huntington, ART, and ICA, here in Boston this summer. We were writing short, 3-5 minutes plays, that people can access via cell phone, based on an interactive map (or something like that). In this case, the writers also needed to be performers, so I went in and recorded my play earlier this week. I'm curious to see how it turns out and if anyone actually listens. I wrote eight different short little plays/monologues, experimenting with different ideas and voices (only one will be actually used). It was a fun exercise. I'll definitely post more information when I have it. In some ways it was like some of the radio theatre that I've done in the past, but there's also a different, slightly more intimate relationship between listener and performer when using a cell phone.
My other big project is completely tearing apart my historical play about the creation of the English Bible. It used to be called God's Voice, then was Four Words for a little bit, now it's called Fire on Earth (which I like a lot better). It also used to have William Tyndale as the main character, required 6 actors, and had about a dozen characters. None of those things are true anymore. It's probably the most radical rewrite of a play that I've attempted yet, but I think it's the right direction. We'll see. It's rough as hell at the moment, so hopefully my writers' groups will be patient with me as I figure out the new direction/framework.
The business side:
Well, I got through Playwright Submission Binge #16, where we try to send out a play every day for 30 days. And I did actually make a submission every day for the whole period. Now it's back to waiting.
Production-wise, I've got a play, Confirmed Sighting, in the NYC-15 Minute Play Festival on April 24, at the American Globe Theatre, 145 W. 46th Street. Deb Linehan, who has directed some of my work in Gloucester before, and is now in NYC, will direct. If it makes it through to the finals, it'll get two more performances.
Brooklyn Publishers just published my 30-minute one-act comedy for high school students, The Next Big Thing, which is immensely fun. I hope that, for me, it really does end up being the next big thing and that scores and scores of students and teachers decide to produce it. We'll see.
Oh, this is a biggie. I'll be having a reading of my play, Constant State of Panic, at the Boston Playwrights Theatre, on Thursday, May 6. Bevin O'Gara will direct. This will be very fun. If you're in Boston, I demand/beg that you come check it out.
On the down side, my novel, Tornado Siren, is now officially out of print. Though you can still buy them from Amazon for a while. Or from me (even better, and they come signed).
The rest of life:
Involves of a lot of gardening--I have three gardens: a community garden plot in Roxbury, a shared backyard garden we're starting this year with some friends, and the 200 Foot Garden, a cool public garden project that continues to grow (with its ups and downs--our greenhouse lost part of its roof earlier this week). Various meetings and events seem to be conspiring to make my life feel especially full these days. (Shall we say over full?)
Okay--that's the update. I'll try to have more good news to share next week.