Friday, May 30, 2014

Starting on a Hat

Years ago, I read and loved the book What Dreams May Come. There were many concepts about it that enraptured me – the idea of kindred souls meeting in the sandbox in their next life, the image of “hell” as only something that you create through your own pain, and that all you need to do to get out if it is to forgive yourself and choose to walk into the light. Those are the big ideas, but the thing that captivated me most in the whole book was one tiny one. This author described this one little corner of “heaven” which houses something like a hall of records – the story of everyone who has ever lived, and ever will live, the inventions created and still to be created, and the books already written, and yet to be written, when exactly the right author presents herself as ready.

JK Rowling said that the idea for Harry Potter just settled upon her, nearly fully formed, as she rode a train to London. Many authors have described similar experiences when that glimmer of an idea hit. I wrote one play, and the idea for that came to me in a rush, with the image of the very last scene, and the rest all tumbled out. Not to say that the writing of it isn’t hard work, sweat, doubt, nerves, euphoria, vampires, and chocolate chip cookies. It’s all of those things and a million more, but the idea is key. Work you can do yourself. The idea has to happen to you. At least that is what I believe.

I have really wanted to write another play for my students to use, one that would offer lots of roles for maximum involvement. One that would have something to say about taking risks and being open-hearted and following your intuition and creating your own path. One that would address the world of social networking versus human interaction, and perception versus reality.

An idea happened to me a couple of days ago. It just fell into my brain, again starting with the ending picture, and after several hours of journaling every single little thought I could capture about it…it has formed into something viable and exciting. I’ve created the Pinterest Board. I’ve named the main character. I’ve started some social inquiries for ideas I can steal and shape from my friends and loved ones. I’m totally jazzed, and I already know that this is going to happen. For real. It doesn’t have to change the world, but I know it will change me, the way creating anything always does. And it will change some kids, the way being in a play always does. And only good can come from that.

Working title: #choosingElla.

Stay tuned.


  1. Excited to see what will come :) Yaaay!!

  2. I've always hoped that heaven was more like the 1987 Timothy Hutton movie "Made in Heaven". It seemed to strike all the right cords in me. There is nothing more invigorating than a project that comes from the heart. Looking forward to it!