Thursday, January 31, 2008

Where have you been?

Writing can affect my social life. Sometimes.

See, when I’m procrastinating or it isn’t going well, I reach out and call someone…email a friend, or just bug my wife more (which gets increasingly harder the more entrenched in her PhD program she gets…curse you academics!)

On the other hand, when the writing is going well then I disappear, lost in my own world. That’s a good thing.

Sadly, the reason for not posting in this blog is neither because the writing is going well or poorly. There is no writing. I have been too busy with other loads of work. What work? Well, I have not just one job, but many. One day job to pay the bills, but also another job as the Regional Rep for The Dramatists Guild, Inc. and then I’m also doing freelance work as a writer and teacher. Oh, and then sometimes I write plays. And screenplays. Or hang out with my wife (when she’s not doing PhD homework…curses to you again you filthy academics!).

One of the things I did over a week ago was attend a high school play festival. Some of the plays were great, some good, some not-so-good, but the amount of energy and enthusiasm was quite exciting. The original plays were what really blew my mind. I kept thinking, if only I had started writing plays when I was seventeen…(I did write a screenplay in third grade, but considering most of the plot points revolved around nose picking, I don’t really count it as any kind of literary achievement).

Since it’s been a few weeks here’s some highlights:

Books & Plays I’ve Read:

White Noise by Don Delillo (not as great as I would’ve hoped)

Beckett Essays & Criticisms—no, I didn’t just add this to seem brainy, I really do like and understand Beckett and enjoy intellectual and/or academic books about his work. This one has some good essays and then others that are just puzzling, like a whole article about Susan Sontag, Allen Ginsberg and John Calder meeting Beckett…and they drank and they talked…and…and…he seemed moody…wow, riveting.

Come Back, Little Sheba by William Inge—I read this before even realizing they were going to revive it on Broadway. Good ol’ fashioned theater. Dated, yes. But well crafted.

Save the Cat by Blake Snyder (sage screenwriting advice from the man who wrote Stop or My Mom’ll Shoot…no, really).

Plays I’ve Seen:

The Breach at Seattle Rep. Its great they’re doing this piece and I’d love to know more about the writing process (it had three playwrights working on it). Wish I could’ve seen more of some stories, less of others.

Movies I’ve Seen:

There Will Be Blood—if this doesn’t win the Oscar for Best Picture or at the very least they don’t give a shiny award to Daniel Day Lewis, I will have lost my belief in humanity.

Juno—This, too, should win an award for best screenplay, at least (and I think it will, actually because it’s the kind of genuine heartwarming and yet non-threatening stuff that the academy likes) and Ellen Page and Micheal Cera are quite good.

I Am Legend—creepy to watch, especially after coming back from NYC.

And we're still watching a lot of 30 Rock. That show is just too darn funny.

In other news, a trip to India might be in my future.

And I’m playing poker on Friday night…Getting’ my poker game face on now…Watch out.

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