How You See It, How You Don’t

Amery Harrington playing a character who doesn't like what she sees in "490 Freaking Times"

Amery Harrington playing a character who doesn’t like what she sees in “490 Freaking Times”

It’s entirely possible that my drive to write in multiple genres is yet another marker that helps explain my diagnosis of Adult ADHD.

(Other markers include truly impressive procrastination skills and a sort of fundamental inability to shut cabinet drawers and doors.)

I can’t help it. Well, I don’t know if I can help it or not, actually. I don’t want to help it. I don’t try to help it. I just keep writing all kinds of everything.

I want to write and publish poetry, and I’ve done that this year. Here’s one I’m really pleased with, one of the more honest things I’ve written, explaining why I’m not (currently) involved with organized religion. The title sort of says it all, “Fuck the Life Abundant.”

I want to publish journalism–op-eds and academic subjects tailored for a general audience, and I do that every month in a column called “Pedagogy Stew” in the Voice of the River Valley.

I want to write and publish creative nonfiction, and I’ve done that this year. Front Range Review published a piece called “Chat Road,” not available online, sorry. I also have some pieces that will appear on Wisconsin Life sometime this winter.

I want to write and publish fiction–still waiting to hear from several places I’ve submitted fiction to this fall. But as I like to tell myself right when I’ve sent something off, “I’m currently un-rejected from a number of good publications.”

And I want to write plays that get produced. That one is taking me years and years to get to, but I keep at it, and two nice things have happened so far this year–one 10-minute play got a reading at the annual meeting of the Friends of the Spring Green Community Library. Three students and an awesome community theater actor read that.

Coming up this weekend is something even more fun. I was excited to be asked to write a piece this summer that could be used by Spring Green’s River Valley Players and Taliesin School of Architecture students.  The idea of the evening is a collaboration between the two groups, and the theme of the pieces that will be performed is “perspective.”

My play is a short one-act, five scenes–the same thing from multiple perspectives. It’s called “490 Freaking Times.” (Bonus points if you get the allusion right away.)

The play is set at a wonderful local bar called The Shed--the background is a picture of the Shed.

The play is set at a wonderful local bar called The Shed–the background is a picture of the Shed.

Here’s a funny story. Terry Kerr is directing the play and working with everyone to stage stories from the Taliesin students. Her original idea for the play was to do something like a book called Elements of a Scene, in which the same thing happens multiple times from multiple perspectives. The title got twisted in communication somehow to where I thought I was being asked to adapt Strunk and White’s Elements of Style for the stage. And I still said yes!

It’s true. I am often up for anything. (Another marker for ADHD?)

So if you’re local, and available, please come on out! Friday 9/18 at the Gard in Spring Green, Saturday 9/19 at Hillside Theater at Taliesin. 7:30 both nights, tickets available at the door, goodwill offering.

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