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November 13, 2008

My One Act Play

I reached the end of my first draft. It definitely needs some tweaking, but I'm really happy with it, because I wrote a play, and made it very different from a screenplay, in all the best ways that theatre is different than film, (I think.)

It's always funny. At the beginning of the quarter, which was just September 27th, I started this class thinking, what in the world am I going to write? Now, just a month and a half later, I have 28 pages of emotion, drama, dialogue, and character that didn't exist before. I just love the way things get pulled out of my spirit when they have to be. It blows my mind to think during this same 6 week period, I could have NOT written this play and then it wouldn't exist. I know this is a really simple concept, but think for a moment that Shakespeare could have not written Hamlet. Copolla could have not made the Godfather. Jefferson could have not written the Declaration of Independence. I'm not saying that what I just wrote is on the level of any of these works, but still, in all cases, someone had to sit down and actually go ahead and put those words to paper, choosing to not do something else, and instead focus on this.

Think for a second. Is there a Hamlet, a Godfather, a Declaration trying to be born? And are you looking for it, or ignoring it? Because I really believe that you have to listen carefully and coax gently and do everything you can to draw these works out of your creative heart.

it's late, have to work on something else.

That's it.

Posted by jason on November 13, 2008 02:22 AM

Comments

What you are saying makes sense. People who are older and considering doing something new--like get a master's degree or a training for a new career--often tell me, "Well, I'll just be too old once I get my master's." And I say, "Well, how old will you be at that time if you don't get your master's?" In other words, age is not a factor--age marches on--but to do the things that you need to do, the things that are in your heart to do--this is the important factor.

So I wonder if I will ever translate the Bible? Learning Hebrew & Greek is difficult!!!!

Posted by: Mom on November 13, 2008 06:53 AM

What an inspirational little post jase! You should write a self help book called "how to birth your own godfather."

Lynn, that is a cool idea but I think that the bible has already been translated into english! No need to worry about learning those tricky old languages anymore.

All joking aside, I agree. Creative endeavors are so cool because you... well... create something. It is so easy to just NOT work and NOT create something and then not even feel that bad about it because you haven't made the world a worse place. But putting in the time and energy is so rewarding when you step back and see that something brand new exists that never would have without you.

Posted by: Collin on November 13, 2008 09:27 AM

Collin –

Exactly, no one, including you, would even know the tragedy because it's not like you're actively destroying something that already exists, but it's the same result.

Posted by: jason on November 13, 2008 11:05 AM

I also think that fear plays a big factor in not creating--like people are just afraid that it won't be good enough anyway, so why even bother...But the thing is that you have to start somewhere. If you don't do anything, than you definitely know the result (a big nothing); but if you create, than who knows, it could--and probably will to some point--change your life.

Posted by: Jessica on November 13, 2008 11:21 AM

Jase, I really appreciate this post. I am currently trying to de-habituate (if I may be allowed to "create" a word) myself from years of choosing something else, instead of letting my creative heart find expression through writing. Allowing that gift to flow freely takes a discipline that I have not often required of myself over the years...even now it is a struggle and I confess I do still give in to lesser pursuits more often than I like. I admire, and aspire to, your dedication, Jase (yours, too, Jess) to your craft. I hope I will, sometime in the not distant future, be able to look back and see that I have won this battle and have a body of work to show for it.

Posted by: Anonymous on November 13, 2008 06:03 PM

Jase, I really appreciate this post. I am currently trying to de-habituate (if I may be allowed to "create" a word) myself from years of choosing something else, instead of letting my creative heart find expression through writing. Allowing that gift to flow freely takes a discipline that I have not often required of myself over the years...even now it is a struggle and I confess I do still give in to lesser pursuits more often than I like. I admire, and aspire to, your dedication, Jase (yours, too, Jess) to your craft. I hope I will, sometime in the not distant future, be able to look back and see that I have won this battle and have a body of work to show for it.

Posted by: kathiek on November 13, 2008 06:03 PM

I almost didn't even type this comment!

Posted by: bsweber on November 13, 2008 11:10 PM

That would have been no tragedy.

Posted by: jason on November 14, 2008 03:47 AM

I think fear and bad self creative esteem does play a part in it... but it's also that NOT doing something creative is much easier. Creating things, especially longer form things, is hard work. It can hurt your head, hurt your heart. I have one professor (a working screenwriter) here who says you should never go longer than 2-3 days without writing because it's relaxing and comfortable and you can get used to it, and then it's so much harder to actually start writing again. Fortunately for me I do enjoy writing, but I also know what he's saying. And I'd say the same is probably true with painting, drawing, dancing, and songwriting (I wrote dancing because I don't really know how to spell the c-word for making up new dances and someone will make fun of my attempt.) It's hard work! Rewarding, but often emotionally, physically and mentally exhausting. It really really is.

Posted by: jason on November 14, 2008 03:58 AM

Jase, do you try not to go 2-3 days without dancing?

and it's choreographing (and saying the c-word is kind of weird, btw).

Posted by: Jessica on November 16, 2008 11:53 AM

someone who has read a couple of my writings asked me the other day, "do you write songs?"
i said "yep.."
they said, "good. it'd be a shame if you didn't."

you're right. suppressing your creativity is like intellectual abortion.

Posted by: Anonymous on November 16, 2008 11:02 PM

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