My lovely cast.
This past Thursday through Sunday my new play Grave Lullaby got its world debut on stage at the University of Mary. I've been immersed in the world of these characters since late May when I began writing the play, and it is bittersweet shifting out of it.
I have been involved in theater for over twenty years, and I've been writing forever, but this is the first time I've combined the two. It's been the best creative experience I've had. As someone who primarily writes fiction, it is a surreal experience to have my characters come to life and walk around in front of me, speaking the words I've written and occasionally offering suggestions and trying new things. I'm lucky that my cast were not only very talented but also seemed to be as committed as I was to breathing life into these imaginary people.
All the special effects worked, including the much fussed over bleeding rig--the actress playing Lily blossomed into gouts of blood each night in a beautifully gruesome manner, all while delivering a believably emotional monologue. Blood and tears is always something to shoot for, and we hit the mark every night.
So now, we are very tired and very proud. Happy to have our evenings back and sad to break the little community we built. The standard end-of-production feelings, but a little stronger on both ends of the spectrum, for me at least. We are waiting now to hear if we get invited to the Kennedy Center American College Theater Regional Festival, in which case we start rehearsals again after Christmas and take the whole show on the road in mid-January. Fingers crossed.
And now I've got to decide what's next. There are three possible novels to be written, as well as the next Cornerboys film (which both Ali and Kevin are ready to do). Also an essay and a Reggie Spiffington short story. But first, Thanksgiving and Christmas decorating. And sleep at a decent hour.