On risk and rejection (and success!), part nine
The latter was the hardest part. I just wasn't inspired to write something new, and it also had to be from Karen's p.o.v. (I cheated in the original version, and used someone else's play.) Fortunately, I did have some of my own poetry, and one poem in particular seemed to fit. It actually typified, at least to some extent, Karen's fears and ambivalence about being with Mark (though it was written a year and a half ago), and so I inserted it. Does it work? Hard to say, but it's in there now. I have to accept the fact that the play isn't done til it's done (which means maybe never), and as long as I save previous versions, there's no issue about going back and forth and inserting, deleting, and maybe reinserting text. I guess I forgot I did this all the time when I was writing short stories (it's been a while), but you have to be willing to take risks (see? it applies to the topic) and then conceded that a change didn't work if that's the case and go back.
The interesting thing is that this play was performed before it had ever received any kind of reading, which was both a blessing and a curse, as I had no chance to test any of it out before it was presented. It was, of course, also gratifying, and I probably learned as much, if not more, from seeing it read in a more polished setting than I would have if it had received a cold read elsewhere. I was also very fortunate in having such a strong actress portray Karen (and where it didn't work, I could adjust the text, b/c I knew she got the character, so if I didn't like the way she interpreted a line or lines, it was probably as a direct result OF the lines, and not her reading). I resent the play to two festivals I just submitted to, and if they don't accept the revised copy, well, at least I got some hard work out of the way, and now I can move onto other projects. There's a one-minute play festival that would be fun to enter. (How does one write a one-minute play??? Maybe I'll learn something from today's two-minute one, as I used a monologue for this, taken from "Workin' Progress," and in this case I would try to write something that had dialogue instead.)
Yesterday, A. and I were supposed to go to Earth Day at the Hatch Shell, and the lineup was fantastic (Five for Fighting, Low Millions, Anna Nalick, and the Wallflowers, amongst others). Alas, the weather was awful--it rained from noontime on--so we regretfully skipped the concert and went to a French film in West Newton instead. It was fun to get out, but I found the movie slow (A. loves French films and didn't mind that at all), Still, I really focused on the writing and will continue to do that, to get ideas. I'll head off to the two-minute festival in a couple of hours (I'm walking most of the way there, rather than going to the gym; the weather isn't exactly stellar out today, but it's not raining out, so I'll live), and will be eager to see what's presented (30 two-minute plays, including one by D. and my monologue). It should be fun, and a lot less pressured than Friday night. I don't intend to do anything with this monologue, or not much, so I can just watch, enjoy, and maybe learn something.
Finally, on the topic of relationships and intimacy, I feel I'm at a real standstill. I decided not to go to therapy tomorrow, as I have a very busy day (meetings from 12 noon on, and then Writing Center til 9pm), and I leave for Florida the next morning. I haven't even packed yet, though I did laundry today, and can pack tonight. I must say that calling Susan and telling her I couldn't come was a big relief, and I'm not sure that's a good sign. I am in a real quandry now, b/c going to Waltham every Monday morning for 9am is stressing me out no end. I realize that if I leave at 8:15, I can get there by 8:45 or 8:50, and since the appointment isn't til 9am, that gives me plenty of time, unless there is a major accident. However, I hate, hate, HATE driving in rush-hour traffic, and after the appointment, I have to get in my car, race back home, and then get on the subway, arriving at work at 11am at the earliest. It was so much easier when the agency was located in Brookline, and not a big deal in Newton Centre, as that's on the T. But this is totally out of my way, and I don't like starting my week stressed AND sometimes depressed; it's not a good way to kick off the work week, that's for sure.
In addition, I get the sense that Susan and I are not going to make a lot more progress in these areas, and whether it's b/c of her and me or b/c I can't go further with anyone, I can't say. Nonetheless, I feel as if I need a break--I've poured a lot of energy into therapy over the past 3 1/2 years, and I'm tired--and maybe this is a good time to take the break and think about where I'd like to go next (cognitive therapy really does seem to be the answer). In any case, I'll get another week off, head to Florida to have some bonding time with my family (it won't be relaxing, but it WILL be a lot of fun, I hope), and then see what we decide on the following week. I get determined to end the idea of having a boyfriend, and then I talk to D. and she tells me how she and her husband J. and her mother are off to Harvard Square for the arts festival today, prior to the two-minute festival, and I feel rather sad again. It would be nice to have someone at the ready to do things with and to share things with. Maybe I'm not looking for a boyfriend but a best friend! It's hard to say. I also, selfishly, wish I had someone to share expenses with, so maybe I could live in a nicer apartment (or at least one in Boston proper), but that's a ROOMMATE, and of course I love living alone. So the whole idea is pretty unsettling right now, and I guess I'll have just have to take more time to sort it out. In any event, I'm off to read "Empire Falls" (the story of my life the past two weeks!) and then head out to the festival. I suspect the more things change, the more they stay the same (as the cliche goes), so when one problem is solved, another arises out of the ashes, and you can just take it one day at a time. I do plan to have fun today, in any case! :-)