Wednesday, May 19, 2004

Okay, so now what the heck do I do?

Got some free time back. Finally.

The play is done, more or less. We've got a bit of work to do before the 28th, and then we're off to Quesnel to perform for festival, but other than that little bit, it's over. We ended our two week run here, with audiences ranging in size from "tiny" to "acceptable".

Yes, I'm very aware that part of the problem was that this a play that people didn't immediately recognize. It's hard to get people to come and see something if they don't already know what they're coming to see -- which doesn't make much sense to me, but it's obviously something that Hollywood figured out years ago, otherwise they wouldn't be pumping out so many goddamn sequels.

Not that I have any intention of "learning my lesson." I have no desire to direct something with an immediately recognizeable name, something that people have already seen the film version of, something where people already know what to expect when they walk through door.

It's partly that I don't want to end up inadvertantly compared to their memory of their previous experience with the material.

And it's partly because I want the audiences who come to see these plays to experience something new and fresh and interesting. Something that surprises them, something that affects them, something that makes them walk away without being able to just brush away the last two hours thinking, "Yeah, it was okay, but the movie was better."

This is all, of course, assuming that the powers that be decide it's worth it to let me direct again.

I'm pitching something for next season. The meeting's on the 20th, and I fully expect it to be a little awkward and bizarre to be selling material for next year while my mind is still not completely off the work being done this season. But I've found a play that kicked me in the stomach, and I had a fantastic time working on the play this year, and to be quite frank, I really can't wait to do it again.

So I'm pitching. It's a play called "'Night, Mother" and it's drama about suicide that, despite it's subject matter, has a surprising amount of warmth to it. It doesn't have an easy, happy, Hollywood-ized ending, in spite of the fact that there was a film made out of it.

In short, it's everything that *I* think a good, solid story should be. Interesting, dark, affecting, moving, and something that, hopefully, should people come to see it, will not be easily brushed out of their minds.

Of course, that's next year. And even that's only assuming those on the Studio Theatre's selection group decide to give me the go-ahead to direct again.

So what I do until then? Now that I've got my free time back, and I can start writing again, what the heck am I going to write?

As promised, I'll try to blog a bit more. I haven't been too concerned about the lack of updates here these last few weeks because I doubt too many people are dropping by for a visit. And if you have been, sorry for the vacancy.

I'll try to update every day or so. If only to practice the art of using the language -- which is pretty much what I wanted the blog for in the first place.

Outside of that, I've got a film script I'm eager to get finished in the next month or so -- well, the first draft, at any rate. It's something I want to try to film in the fall, so finishing that first will give me the chance to let it sit for awhile before going back to polish.

After that, there's a one act play I'd like to finish before the Theatre BC New Play contest cut-off -- which is, I think, sometime in June. After that, there's a top secret musical theatre production I'd like to work on, plus a novel that I started a few months back that is tugging at me. I'm tempted to leave it until November for National Novel Writing Month, and I may very well do that depending on how my schedule works out over the next few months. But I'm hoping I can back to it before then.

And, of course, there's last November's novel that's still waiting around for an ending.

So I've got my projects, and I've even got them structured into a rough "order of importance".

Then my lawn needs mowing, my house needs cleaning, my refrigerator needs re-stocking...

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