I am still getting back to normal after the long weekend in Olathe, Kansas, at the Midwest Dramatists Conference. As noted below, the reading of my play went very well and I made a lot of new friends and learned a lot, which was the whole point.
For one thing, playwrights, I’ve discovered over my 40 years in the trade, are unlike some other areas in the arts where there’s an air of tension or competition to be better than someone else in order to get a part or a job. Playwrights — at least the ones I’ve worked with at Inge, here in Miami, and now at the MDC — support and encourage each other and share opportunities. Maybe it has something to do with the fact that we know our work is unique so instead of trying to outdo someone else in talent or craftsmanship, we are all offering our own voice and vision. Whatever the reason, I have always found a sense of camaraderie and connection with people from all walks of life, of all ages and experience, but who have found a way to express themselves through characters, actions, words, and expression that reaches an audience. And that’s the whole point.
And now I’m back in the real world of home, work, life, and writing here. I’m still recovering from the cold that I took along with me, and I have a busy couple of weeks ahead both at the office and in my other obsession, antique cars. So allow me a little time to catch up to the harsh realities I left behind when I took off for the weekend in the middle of America.
By the way, I get my share of Wizard of Oz jokes — say hi to Toto, etc. — when I go to Kansas for Inge and now this weekend. Despite the stark sepia tone of the film in the beginning and end, Kansas is beautiful and its people have always been friendly, gracious, and outwardly tolerant of the invasion of playwrights and theatre folk from both coasts. Thank you.