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Showing posts from May, 2010

Holy, holy, holy

Once upon a time, I was a professional religious person. When strangers gathered for banquets and learned I was among them, I was asked to bless the meal. At Thanksgiving gatherings, Christmas, Mother's Day brunch, everyone turned to me for prayer. I've buried every aunt and uncle in my clan.  My own mother asked me to do her funeral.  Years later, when she died and I asked to sit in the congregation with the rest of my family, my siblings were baffled.  It took them years to recover from my betrayal.  Such is the life of a cleric. Now, I'm a playwright. I rise early, make the coffee and open my notebook.  My mind and imagination are filled with the voices and mannerisms of the thousands of characters I left behind when I left the church. The story flows; no interruption, no judgment.  If I am lucky, my stuff will one day emerge before crowds of critics. People who have never laid eyes on me, never asked me to baptize or bury, will hear my holy words. Oh, yes.

Many paths - one destination

I've splattered blogs all over the internet.  For the past two years, I've posted my advice column "Dear Kristine" on both my FACEBOOK and my TWITTER pages. This blog, however, has my attention these days.  Writing about the theatre inspires me to write for the theatre - so my blog feeds my art.  Can't think of a better way to use my time! I'm writing a play about the 1970s, and the difficulties behind breaking into a male-dominated profession.  My first work was as a Presbyterian pastor.  I met some strange, strange clergy in those days - and many wonderful church-going believers.  Not one of the former group encouraged me - not one of the latter said anything other than wonderful praise. I suppose that's why there is a city-wide interest in the completion of this play.  When finished it will contribute to history. Once upon a time, women who sought work, opened the Pioneer Press to "Help Wanted - Girls," and "Help Wanted - Men&qu

Sliding down the razor blade of writing . . .

My new play is titled "The God Girl." When I started it, it looked like a serious, important drama; a little slice of personal history with a message for the masses thrown in for sport. Now, after four months writing - the play has morphed from drama to comedy, from light musical to mystery, and finally to drama again. Few people could tolerate this kind of ambiguity with their craft. Consider how frustrating it would be to knit a sweater without a pattern; only a vague, unformed idea about how it will appear when finished. That's how this process feels - - I know the message I want to convey. I know that, in the end, I will communicate what I believe to be important. Along the way, however, I have discovered a wide variety of vehicles. When I taught writing, I had many students to complained to me that writing was "painful." I remember one student in particular - a sad, unhappy, overweight woman who walked with the use of a cane; a young woman who