1. Idea for a play

    I’ve got a lot of thoughts brewing around in my head right now for the next play I’d like to write. Fingers crossed, I’ll get into a playwriting class in the theatre department so I’ll have a more interactive / involved experience with writing plays and I’m guessing that we’ll have a final project of one long-ish play due at the end of the semester. So I’m trying to come up with some ideas of what I’d like to do so I can really give it a solid go once I get to it.

    Right now my idea is swirling around presenting the history of trans people, in some capacity. I know the basics, but I’m hoping to have time this summer to do some research and get a better idea of what the “trans movement” has been like.

    Formatting too is getting fun. I’m in a contemporary drama class, so we’ve been reading a lot of really interesting things. A couple of plays have been set in two + time periods and have melded the time periods together as the story went on, which could be very appropriate here. Another play we read involved documentary-styled writing, which could work. We’ve also read plays that are set in series, some of which are like “generation plays”. For example, one we read was several short plays, each one following the next generation (or set about twenty years later). By doing so, we go to see almost 200 years of these two families and the conflict between them; it was really interesting! So that is another possibility is to write several short bits that thematically go together and show the progression of time / view points / etc. I guess the formatting will ultimately come down to what makes the most sense for the story I want to tell.

  2. My playwriting teacher is actually kind of starting to annoy me.

    We write sections / whole acts of our play and bring them to class to be acted out by our classmates. During which we can get a feel for how it looks / sounds / flows / etc. Our classmates also watch and get a feel for it. Afterwards, everyone shares their ideas on what they liked and what can be improved upon. You also get to ask questions or for help.

    Recently, though, our teacher has taken to interrupting in the middle of a reading to make comments / suggestions. It gets annoying because 1) it jars the action so you have to get back into the play / is rude to the “actors” and 2) he made two comments during my play about what he wanted to see that LITERALLY showed up in the next couple of lines. (Did that to the other play too). Also he apparently wasn’t paying attention because he was all like “now you can go back and work some subtext into the lines” when most of the class was like “um… I totally got the subtext”. Plus he didn’t wait until the end of the damn read through to comment otherwise it might have made more sense / I was trying to follow his advice about having fewer stage directions and letting the actors get a feel for what they wanted to do with it. Obbviously, being a run through with amateur actors, they were just kind of making it up as they went along.

    Classmates had good suggestions, though, so there’s that.