As I mentioned last week, I’m presently working on the revisions for two scripts of mine, Philostrate and The Tragedie of King John Falstaff. Both are pastiches of Elizabethan drama, which I’ll be submitting to the ongoing Shakespeare’s New Contemporaries contest at the American Shakespeare Center. The deadline for this round’s applications is August 1st, giving me just under four months to revise both drafts. Which you’d think would be plenty of time.
I think I may already be behind schedule.
By my reckoning, I’ll need one of those four months to do the major revisions to Philostrate, two months for King John Falstaff (because I need to reorganize it to fit a particular cast size), and then two weeks in July for each play to do a final polish before submitting. So, despite having a third of a year in which to do this, my actual margin for error is smaller than I’d like.
Thirty days for the first play.
Eight of them are already gone.
That means I’d need to have gotten through a little over a quarter of the play by now for my timetable to still be viable. And lo and behold, I have. The current draft runs seventy six pages; I’ve made it through the first twenty two. Success!
The part I’ve reached, the middle of the play, is the part that needs the most work; after I’d finished the original draft last year, I realized there was a whole series of conversations that needed to happen which I’d neglected to put in; a whole character was missing from a crucial part. (If nothing else, that character needed to be there to say the line which, in real life, prompted this whole ridiculous project in the first place.) I didn’t do anything about it last June, knowing that I needed to come back to this project with fresh eyes someday.
Well, someday is here.
In fact, it seems like someday is already past.
It’s probably a good sign that I’m this stressed this early; I have a lot of work ahead of me, and it couldn’t possibly be done at the last minute. The only problem is, the entirety of the next four months amounts to being the last minute. And this can’t be rushed – these two plays are pastiches of Elizabethan verse drama, and I have to go practically line by line.
So, sorry for a shorter-than-usual post this week. My time for doing things like blogging, eating, sleeping, and so on, will be somewhat reduced in the weeks to come.
Posted on April 9, 2018
by Michael C. O'Day