December 24, 2001: I was spending Christmas Eve with my parents at the Flamingo Lodge in Everglades National Park. I was on Christmas break from my teaching job and we were spending a few days in the park doing some birding and exploration before heading to Naples and the western shore of Florida to see some relatives. On the drive down from Miami, which took about two hours, I was thinking about an idea I’d been turning over in my head for a play about a writer who lived in the Keys and was suffering from writer’s block. By the time we got settled into our rooms I had figured out the story, and between the time we arrived and we went to dinner I had written most of the first scene, and I even had the title. Over the next few days, between the boat rides through the Everglades, the tour of Shark Valley, and the weekend in Naples, I had the first act finished. After New Years and returning to teaching and directing, I spent weekends on it, and by spring break in March, I finished it.
And next month it opens off Broadway at the Manhattan Repertory Theatre.
Happy Birthday, Can’t Live Without You.