Breaking The Leg – “Camp Gethsemane”

I could talk about other stuff, especially since I talked about this just a couple of days ago, but I don’t want to.

Well, except to update yesterday’s post and say that the Tuscaloosa Arts Council has put “Turn Me On, Dammit” back on the docket to watch on July 17.

Anyway… as I mentioned a couple days ago, I started “Camp Gethsemane” three years ago to the day. June 8, 2009 was when I first put pen to paper and started writing my first play.

I take this as a major accomplishment because it’s the first writing endeavor of this sort that I’ve ever completed. I have several plays and screenplays that sit in my head or on my computer in various states of incompleteness. Ideas for plays and movies have popped in and out of my head for years. …actually, just in. They never leave. I either write them down or never actually forget them.

One day, I may actually manage to write them all. Completed. Full length works. And then, maybe, I’ll be able to get them produced. And, if they’re any good (a worry every writer with good tastes has, I’m told), maybe I can kick start my theatrical/film career as a writer and let the acting come along as it does.

But for now, this is my one completed work. At 1-inch side margins and 1.25-inch top and bottom margins, single spaced with page breaks after each act, the play comes in at 73 pages. Theoretically, according to the rule of thumb for plays, that’s about an hour and 50 minutes. It could be shorter. It very well may be much longer. I don’t know. What with 27 scene changes in the show, I think I’ve outdone even Shakespeare in the majority of his plays. (Not with quality, with length and scene changes. Never with quality.)

I hope to, no later than September, do a reading of the play. Perhaps in July, when people are more available (myself included). In the reading, I hope to actually hear what the play sounds like, find the weak parts and fix them, find the strong parts and emphasize/not touch them… y’know, normal editing stuff. It’s hard to tell if what you’re writing is any good. You need others to look over it, to catch things you thought were clear but were only in your head, that sort of thing. That’s why there are editors.

If the play manages to actually be worth producing once it’s been read aloud and fixed up, I plan to do whatever it takes to get a production up no later than this time next year. And if that goes well/gets acclaim? …well, then we’ll see.

But I really don’t want to get my head swollen or my hopes high. A big fear I have is that this piece I’ve given three years of creative effort to is not going to be worth the wait. That it’ll be a flop. That would suck.

…so, for now… I’ll just be proud that it’s done. And when I take it to its fullest extent, I will move on to my other works. And I will keep driving to finish them. Because I’m in the real world now, and it’s time I made my own creative footprint.

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