Wednesday, February 17, 2010

First Draft Completed

I've just finished 68 pages of the first draft of a stage play I've been working on since August 2009. I typically don't write stage plays but for some reason I just figured, "Well, what the hell..."

Catharsis is setting in. It's like I've gotten some huge elephant off my chest and I want to shout about it to the world. I've stayed up all night working on this! I'm excited about this next stage of editing and refining, adding and subtracting. It's like I have all my meat finally on the grill and next is the fun part--the seasoning. When I'm done with it, I'll probably have added enough seasoning to make it around 100 pages. That's roughly about two hours with a break in the middle.

Switching gears, I've been mulling over for quite some time about something a friend of my who writes said about story telling. He told me that coming up with the story is art, writing it and putting it into dialogue form is the science. I think he was being facetious and referencing the usage of really bad catch phrases, but just in case he wasn't I have to strongly disagree on that point. Writing follows a natural path. Every story has one other wise they wouldn't be stories. They'd be beginnings without ends, trials with no tribulation, or endings that never actually began. Without the science of story telling there would be nothing compelling about anything. It's not art, it's just common sense, much like cooking. And like cooking what makes stories good is not what the dish is trying to be as a whole but what goes into it. Like, umm, words?

Whoa, I'm hungry.

I'm liking the cooking references but right now I'm too tired to really go anywhere with them. Hopefully one day I'll see this play come to life and hopefully audiences can experience what I've felt and been through in ways I never even imagined. Or, maybe they'll just hate it. I'll take my chances.


  1. That's really cool! Can't wait to see it performed someday.

    On a side note, I find your philosophy on writing interesting, but I still stand by my belief that writing the script is more of a science than an art. But, then again, writing a stage play is a completely different animal than writing a screenplay. With a screenplay, the story is the artform and how it's told through the images. What you write on paper is just there to give you a blueprint and nothing else, but with a play, I could see how the story is the science and the actual writing of the script is the art. Dialogue in theatre plays a greater deal of importance than in film, so yeah, I could imagine writing a play being an art.

  2. Thanks, right now I think i'll do the Stephen King thing and put it away for a month and not look at it.

    I still disagree with you. To me the only difference between a screen play and a stage play is how it's formatted. Screenplays put dialogue down the middle and stage plays go down the left side. Unless you're the director/producer who's got the money i the bank to make it happen... most directors or producers looking at a screen play don't want to see lots of information about what types of shots the writer thinks would be good in certain places. That's the director's and cinematographer's jobs. People get very offended when writers try to micromanage every aspect of the production. Your job as a writer unfortunately, is to just get the story across. Once the bare bones are there it's up to the production team, the art director, costumes, the assistant directors, the actors and the rest of the crew to make it into art--if that's still what you're looking for. Or, they can make it into absolute crap. Doesn't matter, going back to the screen play, it all looked the same on paper.