As I continue on my journey to be a playwright, I try to surround myself with like minded people, so I can ask questions and pick their brains. I started writing my first play by accident. I was trying to work some stuff out and would write random thoughts, collecting stories, and poof a play.
Ok, not exactly poof, more like a volcano that has blown and the lava is slowly inching its way to the sea, and when it hits the salt water a cloud of volcanic yuck fills the airs with a sizzle. That’s where I’m at. Volcanic yuck. My first play completed, workshopped and performed but no idea what to do next. The sequel that I had started hangs over me like ashfall, with no end in sight. I have been again collecting bits and pieces of writing as I try to figure out this next show. Trying to write for a specific topic to be performed in a specific venue. So many options for stories to be told, where do you start?
Sitting alone at my computer doing endless research, I am no further along, with the exception of a few dozen avenues to explore. My goal is to find a writers group to just sit with and write. I don’t have to share with anyone, I just need to feel the pressure of others actually writing and I think it would work. When I do have the opportunity to sit with real writers, I feel like a fan girl gushing and asking non-stop questions. Writing with other writers and then sharing is a an opportunity to understand the process of writing by their comments and how they ask questions. They don’t offer up suggestions for your characters or “maybe you should change the location so then your protagonist escapes the bad guy, you can change this and you can change that”. They tell you what they liked and what they didn’t understand and what they wanted to know more about and it makes you want work harder.
I can feel the tradewinds blowing and the ash lifting. The only way to get past the yuck is to just keep writing. Sit down, turn off your internet connection, so you won’t be able to do “research”. Or better yet, go old school, grab your notebook and find a comfy, place to write, and just write. Don’t worry if it’s good, it doesn’t have to be perfect, it just has to be.