Monday, July 16, 2007

How did it go?

So yesterday was the reading of my boxing noir piece "I Can't Go Down".

Some time has passed since I've been in that sort of environment, a place where you invite others to comment upon something you've been working on or dreaming about for such a length of time.

It is hard not to feel exposed, over exposed. But, just like a visit to the doctor, you have to take off your clothes in order for a most comprehensive examination.

When it was over, one of the participates asked me how I was feeling. Up until the morning of the reading I had one very definite positive feeling. But after the reading, or more specifically after the post show critic and commentary, I felt a little lethargic...There was a part of me that was ready to set thing down, to say "Alright you finished! Good job!", but the feeling I have now is "The first draft has its beginning, middle, and the real work begins...".

I am a little exhausted this morning. I wanted to rest and see the taxidermied head of this script displayed proudly on my mantle, but not yet. So, my plan is to draw up a list of things I want to incorporate from yesterday's notes that I think might not be there yet. Then, I'm going to put this thing away for a week or two. Then come back to it. I feel I have something here that is very good, and if I can sculpt it a little more, who knows maybe I'll have something truly great.

Focusing solely on the positive...after we had picked voraciously at anything mole on the skin of the script that might possibly be melanomous, the majority of consensus was that...

a) the tale being told was compelling.
b) that the characters were well drawn, distinctive, and for lack of a better sort of characters that actors love to play.
c) that even if the text could use some paring down in places, the core of the language used had a poetry and lyricism that rang true.

So, I'll put that in my pocket when I need a little cheering up from time to time.


Anonymous said...

It can be a tough ordeal that's for sure. We did a couple of these for Baker & Huff. We got a much stronger play out of it. Keep in mind that a fair portion of the critique is bullshit. Most of the people there last night were involved with the reading of the play and may not have been paying close attention to anything that didn't feature their character. If you have another reading, bring in more people to just watch (or listen). Have it at Gill Park, or someplace like that, where you can get a few more people in.
For now,take the feedback sheets and go over them in a week or so when you have some distance. Review the reviews and you'll have a better idea of which ones hold water.
Anyway, it's a great piece man.

M. Brownlee said...

Hey Bob. Sorry I missed out. But what I've heard at Write Club has been good. Keep digging. Keep molding.

Joe Janes said...

Hey, Bob - I really like the play, but one thing that didn't come up at the feedback session was the title. Seriously. I don't think it reflects the weight and depth and grittiness of your play. It's not as compelling as the story is. Just my unsolicited two cents. Good luck with the rewrites. I agree with Ravin, too, on how much of the feedback is really relevent. Gotta go with what resonates with you.

- Joe

Devilvet said...

re: the name

Joe, I agree with you. I've been trying to think of better titles.

I may throw a few up on the blog and see if anybody posts response.

Joe Janes said...

I like the title


It has nothing to do with your play, but I think it will put butts in seats. Plus, it has an exclamation point! Like the one I just used.

Devilvet said...


You have succeeded in making a grown man cry. I hope you are satisfied!

But wait? Monkeypants could be a great name for another boxer in the play, sort of like Chris Kattan character. We bring the guy into the ring and give him an apple. The real reason they call him Monkeypants is that first time his hands went into his pants was when he discovered his opposible thumb and thus was able to utilize tools.