Category Archives: 1. Get Inspiration

The science behind good plays

Researchers have done a lot of work in the past few years on what makes a compelling story. You can use the results of their research to help you make your plays express your passion for what you’re writing. What … Continue reading

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Too much material? Some inspiration for you

Have you ever had too much story? You know, where you have so many ideas and so many great scenes, you have to cut your script because nobody does four-hour plays anymore? Or, maybe you actually have two plays, or … Continue reading

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How I staged my impossible-to-stage short play

I’ve written a series of short plays that are damn near unstageable. The dialogue is opaque to the point of meaninglessness, many roles would be impossible to cast (cats and kittens, anyone?), and the stage directions contain descriptions of action … Continue reading

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It worked! — a better scene from reading each character’s dialog

So, maybe you remember that I’ve been posting about a dialogue-editing technique I learned about at the Dramatists Guild conference back in August. I read through my play “How to Kill a Cactus,” and read only one character’s lines. Even … Continue reading

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Why waste time? Start out strong!

I went to a play reading the other night. The playwright has a lot of experience, has gotten awards, has gotten work produced around the country. So I was surprised at how weak the play was, given the playwright’s experience … Continue reading

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Dream Logic — the essay by Kato McNickle

Kato McNickle, one of the presenters at the “Dream Logic” talk at the Dramatists Guild conference in August, wrote an essay based on her research on dream logic. “I woke myself up laughing. Laughing out loud at a play that … Continue reading

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Dream Logic — exercises

At that “Dream Logic” talk at the Dramatists Guild conference in August, the presenters passed out a booklet with an essay about dream logic, and two exercises.  Kato McNickle gave me permission to post them here. The exercises were developed … Continue reading

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Dream Logic – how it can help your plays, part 2

So, in a previous post, I talked about what I learned at the “Dream Logic” session at the Dramatists Guild conference in August. In this post, I’m going to talk about some examples I came up with on how you … Continue reading

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Dream Logic – how it can help your plays, part 1

Think about a dream you had last night. Or recently. Did you try to describe it to somebody? If so, how did you explain it?

You probably used the phrase “dream logic” when you were trying to describe how one scene effortlessly transformed into another, how the place looked different but you knew it was the same, the way that this one person is really somebody else even without the slightest bit of resemblance.

It’s all hard to explain in the light of day, but it makes complete sense when you’re dreaming. That’s dream logic. Continue reading

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Improve your writing by getting it in front of people

Do you ever have those times when you feel like your writing sucks?  That every scene you try to write is just an epic fail?  Do you wish someone could give you some really good feedback on how to make … Continue reading

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