by E.h. Bennett
I wrote a monologue in August. Too blocked to finish it, I sought out the song of the sea. Not finding my answer there, my next stop was a musical followed by sushi. After which I entered a zone and battered out a fix. Go figure.
The monologue grew into two and the twelve pages were beautifully interpreted at my local college in November.
However, in the end (to date) I’ve written a 52-page “mini epic poem,” “spoken word,” “complete and profound,” ultimately, “difficult to read” play (?) with all its intentional lack of description, formatting, punctuation, and Blank Space on the page.
What to do. What to do. What to do now???
My conundrum is this: I’ve experienced interpreters who are directed to cross out stage directions and (beat) and (pause) and they do not even take the opportunity to experiment with the playwright’s intentional time and space. And this perplexes me. Maybe I’m overreacting in the other direction?
Yet as I’ve discovered, there’s a whole literature devoted to the art of the Pause or as Suzan-Lori Parks has coined them “spells.”