8:40pm — I’ve got to write a play tonight. Actually, I need to write two plays, but I’m going to start with a realistic small focus. I figured that what I need is pressure, so here’s pressure: live-blogging the process, start to finish. Well, it’s not quite start, because I’ve been thinking about the plays for weeks, but you get the idea. Let’s see what happens. Just know, I have no title, no plan, no play when we start all this.
8:43 — There are two plays to start working on: one is about Route 66 (the road, not the old TV show that I remember never watching on Nick at Nite), and the other is about, well, sex. It occurs to me as I write this now that my mom is one of the few people who regularly reads my blog. Maybe this is a bad idea.
8:50 — I’ve got a tentative title for the sex play: Untitled Play About Fucking. I also have scraps of a recent conversation with an actress friend in mind about considering having sex for money. This, of course, is a rich topic, and I’m thinking about going down this road. What I know I want to do is write something funny, which means, if I choose the sex for money path, that I can either (a) write a light-hearted romp about prostitution/porn, which isn’t really in my wheelhouse, or (b) go down the road of one’s debate about his/her relative distrust of the sex for money process. We’ll see.
8:51 — I realize that maybe the Route 66 TV show on Nick at Nite is a tricky way into the Route 66 play. Hmm. I’m in a very meta/self-referential place with playwriting lately — I like plays that are aware that they are plays. I’m working on a play in which I am a character, along with Chad Deity, who is a character I created, which makes it all complicated. I’m stalling now, of course. I got nothing for either piece.
9:00 — Ooh. Wrestling is on.
9:02 — See, I have to watch wrestling. It’s research for Chad Deity!
9:03 — An idea. The title of the sex play is now 30 Untitled Plays About Fucking. I’m going to desperately avoid getting into trouble for this thing. It’s a bad idea on every front. I’m putting out a call for suggestions (by the time you read this, I will have received what I need, so don’t respond. Think of this as the episodes of America’s Best Dance Crew that air after voting has ended).
9:09 — Did Ric Flair just blade off a single punch from Chris Jericho?
9:10 — Sorry. Wrestling moment.
9:19 — Thirty is too many plays. I’ve only got seven minutes. Let’s try ten to start.
9:20 — No, let’s go back to thirty. For the challenge.
9:29 — Okay. Thirty isn’t possible. Maybe the title stays though.
9:32 — I’ve started. This first piece I wrote better not be the first piece of this play. Yikes.
9:38 — And we’re cruising right along. Three “plays” written already. It’s not far to call them plays. Not even short plays. They don’t really have beginnings/middles/ends. They’re just sort of tiny half-ideas/sketches. The trick, I’m realizing, will be to create an arc of some sort, or even kind of a touching story in the middle of all this over-the-top lewd stupidity.
10:01 — I’ve got the idea. I’m breaking to watch wrestling and answer e-mails. And twitter. Effing twitter.
10:39 — Okay. I’m back. Let’s see.
10:50 — Oh dear lord this play is inappropriate. Beyond inappropriate. What’s fun about it is that there’s no filter here. Whatever comes to mind ends up on the page. I’ve done eleven plays in less than two pages.
11:18: I’m cruising right along here, and I hit the point that I always hit with silly plays: questioning my activistic bona fides. I’m writing stupid short silly plays about sex, but they’re (a) not artistically ground-breaking and (b) not displaying any awareness of the world at large. And this is a problem for me, on some level. I’m not a community organizer or a for real for real activist, but I like to think that I can impact the world with my work. Still, every once in a while I want to write big dumb plays about fornication. It’s hard to balance.
11:21 — I decided to put that little burst of conscience into the play somehow.
11:23 — I can tell I’m procrastinating by how many people I’m responding to on Facebook, especially the people I only kind of sort of know.
11:38 — Oh man, I’m just straight up cheating now. I called one play “13-27,” which basically means I’m skipping out on my responsibilities. I feel good about it though, because I’m rupturing the fourth wall, bringing myself into the play, tossing a backhanded insult at a play I saw recently and hated (it’ll probably fly under most people’s radars), addressing my hesitation about what I’m writing, and getting me damn near to the end. Gotta celebrate that.
12:09 — And I’m calling it a night. The play is almost done. I left myself the following note for the last piece: “Write something awesome and sweet for this.” We’ll see.