Monday, December 24, 2012

Greyer or Golder?

Well, it’s happened again. And I wouldn’t have it any other way. Thanks to the thrill of being challenged and inspired by Lost Word Writers, it’s been another year of doing what I had never thought to consider doing.
I wrote my first play, The Ballad of Eleanor, and for the very first time experienced the excitement of characters I created come to life through the talents of our playwriting group. This was followed by another play, Wooden Things, adapted from a short horror story written a couple years ago (something else I never would have thought to do apart from Lost Word). I also attempted a monologue adapted from another short horror piece, and submitted it at the last minute.

(What? Me, doing that?)
Then there's a third play, Roadside Affair. On good advice I will be exploring the screenplay option for that. And then gut and rewrite it so that it will also work as a one-act.

(What? Screenplay? Me? Again?)
I also learned how to use proper formatting (finally) for the six stories I submitted to Our Wicked Ways, followed by two more for 100 Candles.  

For the first time in some years, I submitted three poems for consideration to a poetry publication. Three abecedarian poems (a triptych of an alphabet form) with ancient historical themes.
Inner Fortress…I am *so proud* of this anthology, of its writers, of the extraordinary content of poems I’ve received. I can’t wait to see its authors honored in print…Wow….And, hopefully, the coming year will see the completion of Milan’s memoirs.

For all the struggle in my personal life, light has shone through in the warmth and power of friendships, writing projects and events, shared passions, goals, celebrating successes, and...poetry slams?
Another year older.  Another year I choose…golder.

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Summer Projects

Like other areas of writing that I love exploring within Lost Word, I’ve also been excited about the challenge of playwriting, ever since our Lost Word Playwriting Workshop, headed by Coralie Johnson, was presented in April.

In The Ballad of Eleanor, one of my greatest challenges has been to create a believable dialogue between my main characters, a woman passenger and a shipmaster, within an 18th turn-of-the-century setting. Eleanor is immigrating to America with her husband and children on a voyage that has suffered the loss of many passengers. She's lost her dear friend, Hannah, and Capt. Williams has lost a boatswain, an orphan he took under his wing.

Eleanor has been ridden with guilt for having voiced such a strong conviction that Hannah come to America. In one of the scenes, she is playing a ballad on the Welsh harp in memory of her friend who was particularly fond of it, and this sparks a dialogue between her and the captain. Through this very brief connection, they both find a few moments reprieve in their grief. But Eleanor is about to inherit a secret of Hannah's she knows nothing about yet. It is my first attempt at completing a play, all though I expect it to go through another revision before it is ready to present.  

Another play, Roadside Affair, is about a couple on a weekend road trip, who witness something scary happening. It’s supposed to be more light-hearted (even with the scary thing). Finally, my third play, Moving Olivia, is partially completed. A family affair involving an elderly woman who is not ready to leave the home she has raised her family in, the daughter who thinks it’s “best” she move, and the granddaughter who intervenes. Both The Ballad of Eleanor and Moving Olivia are heavily adapted and revised from poems I’ve written. I have set Moving Olivia aside for now, in a file I have dubbed, Winter Projects, along with three other writing endeavors waiting to come to life.

In the meantime, two projects very close to my heart, Lost Word’s poetry anthology, Inner Fortress, and Milan’s biography, will continue to have my utmost attention. Inner Fortress is (so far) thirteen authors and 150 pages strong, and I am halfway through the manuscript for Milan’s bio.

I’ve also found a new edition to my library, free with a coupon. A very good Oxford University Press edition (1938) of The Complete Works of Shakespeare, in one volume, 1,252 pages, not counting the glossary.