A small contingent this week for playwriting class but that wasn't necessarily a bad thing as I need to learn all about one act plays.
Thus far we've been paddling around the rather comforting arena of ten minute plays and monologues. These I have been able to handle and I feel good about what I've managed to craft. Which is strange really as I just cannot get my head round short stories which would be the regular writing alternative.
For once I actually have a fantastic idea for the play but after sitting down with the group it became clear that I am setting the scene too much. I forgot that my audience are sitting and watching not curled up with tea and biscuits. That's not to say that novels don't have action from the get go - of course they do - but I think you need to grab throats a little more aggressively in a one-act.
It would probably help if I could spend a couple of weeks just going to all the local theatre productions and spend some time seeing everything. Imagine the amount of excellence and how-not-tos you could soak up. Wishful thinking unfortunately. The closest I get to a one-act play is the latest episode of In The Night Garden.
The best bit about the four scenes I have so far is that they are easily portable for re-ordering leaving some excellent gaps for injecting the action. I even know what the action is going to be! The less interesting part about what I have so far is that I am now at the stage where I need to draft a plan. Plans and I have a less than successful relationship but I am prepared to commit provided it is prepared to be written.
If you have any suggestions for excellent one-act plays you've seen please do comment and share.