Thursday, April 23, 2009

by Eleanor Tylbor

So Eleanor, it's been a while since any new updates have been provided. How are things going with you in the playwriting arena?

Same old, same old. Still pursuing that evasive first play production and sending out queries to various competitions and theatres. Whenever I send out my play followed by that inevitable wait for a response, I've managed to convince myself that a long wait indicates that they/a theatre really like it and want to discuss it's merits among themselves.

"Hey Paul (or Jessica or whoever) - did you read that Tylbor play? Wasn't it hysterical? We gotta find a place for it this season!"

If this were only the case!

Also been re-reading some of my older plays and evaluating the dialogue and plots. Frequently, the concept that perhaps I only have two full plays in me surfaces. It took me almost two years to write them and umpteen years: translation: still updating, years to perfect them to the point they are now. Anyway...

Each day I check into my favorite playwriting site, The Playwright's Forum. The forum, which in my opinion is one of the best playwright-related places on the Web, is moderated by Edward Crosby-Wells and Paddy who keep things running smoothly. The site is a gathering place for both professional and neophyte professionals who offer advice and critiques when asked, in addition to sharing 'calls-for-submission' that come up. It is also the place to share successes and bemoan bad reviews or not-so-successes. On occasion and to encourage playwrights, Edd holds two-page contests for a real prize. It's a very nurturing place to hang out and highly recommended for playwrights of all levels.

When it comes to tweaking - I'm right up there. I can agonize over the meaning of a word for hours. Realistically, it's obvious that the misuse or misplacement of a word ain't gonna make a whole lot of difference or impact on whether a theatre will accept a play or not. Frequently, I get bogged down with stupid details. For example in my short, "Elvis: The Real Story" I spent 45 minutes assessing whether I should rename my female character whose current name is "Tammy." So I'm thinking: maybe Tammy is an outdated name. Perhaps another more current name like Emily, Sharon, Amanda could make a difference. This is usually followed by a period of self-deprecation and a general internal rant of "why-do-I-continue-this-continuous-search-for-recognition" to be followed by a general acknowledgement of my ability and creativity to use the right words in an entertaining way.

I've also decided it's time to add to one of my plays-in-the-making, "Dead Writes", which I started and have added to over the years. In my humble opinion, it's got potential and the makings of a good story. It's a comedy-come-mystery-come-love-story, which is always popular. The more I write about it, the more appeal it has.

Let's see now...I've wasted two hours and the characters of Dead Writes are beckoning. I'm coming Felicia. Just wondering...perhaps Felicia is not an appropriate name.<

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