Skinny dipping in the East River?

The rest of the week…
Tuesday night I had a reading of my new play with the group “The Fold.”  It’s so thrilling to be writing a new full-length play and watch it come to life. As a writer, I think I tend to listen to my work as if I were an audience member, so when it’s over, it’s quite possible that you will look over at me and I’m on the edge of my seat wondering what’s going to happen just as much as you are.  When the reading is over, it’s pointless to ask me questions, especially in the beginning.  Truth is, I let the characters tell me what’s going to happen.

Writing the new scene was killing me.   Since it sounded like a bad soap opera, I re-wrote it and turned out to be pretty good.  Re-writing a scene is an impressive feat for a writer, I think.  I strongly believe one of the best things I’ve noticed about my skill set as I am maturing as a dramatist is my ability to re-write.  When I first started I certainly didn’t have this skill.  I was so lazy that I would get an idea for something once and that was that.  Let’s just say that jumping from having written one short play to being in graduate school where I had to constantly have ideas for new plays was a hurdle for me.  Now I feel like ideas come to me all the time and I can’t even keep up.  I can’t write fast enough.  I guess hard work eventually pays off.  Even though my body of work looks impressive to some, I don’t feel that I worked that hard because I love what I do.  I love to write characters and dialogue, but what I don’t like to do is set a schedule.  I am not a writer who “writes 10 pages a day” for example, like Hemingway.  I write when I get the inspiration to do so, which does not bode well for someone who wants to be a professional writer.  Because I am used to working a full-time job while also pursuing my writing career,  I am comfortable with thinking a lot about something and then spewing out a scene in 10 minutes.  I am now giving my writing my full attention which is both amazing (because I am ready) and scary at the same time.

My friend Audrey and I call this “ The Creative Life” and we are serious about it.   We make specific plans to meet up and go write together as much as possible.  We put our matching Mac Books back-to-back.  She is working on her PhD thesis and I’m writing plays, etc….it’s “fun times.”  We giggle a lot.

Wednesday, September 24th — sitting at Grounded, not exactly writing yet and my phone rings.  It’s someone from the theater (of a company who wants to produce my one-act play).  I had had some reservations about the contract.  Apparently the theater had another playwright who works with them give me a call so I could be re-assured.  Karen Williams is the playwright and she sounds like a very nice lady, so I decide to interview her, but it’s over the phone and I don’t think she lives in NYC, so I don’t think it counts.
Wednesday night.  I am running through my fabulous hood in the West Village on my way to dance class.  I try to interview my dance teacher, but I can tell she thinks I’m being weird.  So I took a picture of the window dressing of Sip and Snip, my local hairdresser.  I hope Ricky can fix my hair soon.
Thursday, September 25th – yikes, one day to my big reading.  I do some emailing for the “big reading” – found out that yes a Broadway producer might come.  Hmmm. No pressure.  I take off for White Plains to spend the day taking care of my aunt.  Nothing happens. I get home extremely tired and can’t believe that I used to commute to White Plains for my job every day.  What torture!  I can only pinch myself that I only have to do this once a week.
Friday,  September 26th – I meet tons of people.  My reading of Reporter Girl was happening.  At 4PM I met up with the actors and my friend Jamie, who was coming out of her early (just-had-a-baby) retirement to direct.  She’s incredible and I’m so glad that we are working together again. Yes, the Broadway producer was there. The audience seemed to love the play.  We only read the first act. The producer invites me out for a drink to talk business.  We went to a swanky secret Broadway club.  I order a Cosmo, then another.  Oh no, I feel myself sway and can’t remember what I just said.  Am I drunk? Really?  Seriously?  I pull myself together.   I think I was charming without seeming too crazy.  Can’t say what we talked about exactly, but we have a meeting next week.
I jump in a cab – off to meet my friends who are already at my house watching the debate.  My favorite line was something about McCain singing about bombing Iran.    My head is spinning too much to pay attention.  I dressed up like Sarah Palin and did a dead on impression: “In what respect Charlie?”

A friend of a friend is there and I decide to interview her, but since I was drinking so much who knows what she really said.  Here’s what I remember –

Who: Carol
Where: My house, the West Village, NYC
Why: Why not?
Occupation: Artist
Carol has lived in NYC since 1984 – crazy, right?  Her greatest NYC moment?
“Skinny dipping in the East River.” What? That sounds gross.
Apparently it wasn’t so gross, but one of those oh-so-daring moments.
“When else in my life would I do something like this?  It was warm and when I looked up from the water it was the most beautiful view,” she said, smiling, obviously remembering the moment with glee.
And I thought sleeping on the floor of the Grand Canyon was awesome.  Apparently one hasn’t lived until they’ve jumped in the East River.
Nope, not gonna do it.

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