Wednesday, February 15, 2012

My "Old Soldiers" are getting antsy waiting for direction. So is the playwright. Yesterday, the lead character, Joe Mckenna, let me know in no uncertain terms that a rebellion could be in the works.

"How much longer are you going to take to finish converting to a damned radio play, woman?" Joe demanded, as I envisioned him in various scenarios. "The others are on my back asking me to ask you to give them some direction."

I know, Joe! I know!

So it's almost March and crunch time for my work-in-progress, "Old Soldiers", in the hope of entering it in the BBC  International Radio Playwriting Competition. This realization hit me last night when looking up a TV program in the weekly guide and saw the date, along with a slight - so far - case of panic. Not too much time left to add content and make changes. Then there's always editing to be done, especially if it's a new play. This is the second time I'm focusing on coverting this into a radio production and actually enter the competition. This time last year the same thing occurred and I missed the deadline.

"So tell us Eleanor - where exactly are you at, now?"

Glad you asked. Read the play and like what I've written so far. That in itself is progress, however - hate those howevers - not much more has been added. Last night I added some dialogue but as I see it, the story line isn't 'sound-friendly.' I've changed the location Joe's apartment to a bar or pub but when you think about it, not much happens in a bar in the way of sound bites. The story line itself will progress to outside-the-bar scenes and I'm now deciding how many of the characters be used. Hate to create throw-away people for the mere sake of having more characters.

"Do you think you'll be able to make the deadline this time or will it be another 'well maybe next year'?"

Who knows. Perhaps sub-consciously I keep procrastinating since it's something in which I have no experience and pure guess work at best.

"But Eleanor - don't you think that radio plays are similar to stage plays?"

Somewhat but it's those sound effects that have me spooked. In plays one has the luxury of sight to help keep things moving, but radio depends on stimulating the listeners imagination. On a good day/night, perhaps I can manage writing three pages, following which I'm completely drained.

"Um...excuse the interruption, Eleanor, but we're waiting. We're not getting any younger, y'know!"

Neither am I, Joe! To be continued...hopefully.

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