Wednesday, January 23, 2013


To Anya on her 30th birthday:
You with the imagined big tattoo of 30 across the face.
Not thrilled about being here
Believes somehow that the tattoo is visible to all
and that it perhaps means something.
Comparing yourself to others
who seem to be somewhere ‘better’ than where you are now
At 30.
You see, that 30, isn’t your 30.
Because someone else’s life isn’t your life.
These are the constructs of someone else.
These are illusions, not relevant to anyone, unless you’re comparing yourself to the arbitrary and meaningless.
For if you’re lucky enough to reach 30
you’re lucky to have made it at all.
Chances are you’ve seen some that didn’t make it
And those that didn’t make it in one piece.
And the sooner you realize that your dreams
do not fit into the perspective you have right now
because they are not arbitrary things
you will find out that you are not an arbitrary thing
defined by a number
because you can’t be. 
Because on this day
the universe brought you into being
 a light to shine on all the world
with gifts to give
Nothing less than amazing. 

Saturday, January 12, 2013

Two more times

How to describe last night:  At a certain point I was watching a play happen on stage and it was like I was watching someone else's play, in the sense, I got caught up in watching the play.  But it was my play.  And I wrote it.  And these actors, that made choices that took risks and got vulnerable and showed me different pieces of the puzzle that made up Lavinnea, Caroline, Amy and we'll call him SteTVHew, WOW!!!  And the people that came, it's nice to have some in the audience that DIDN'T know me but came out to see this.  And the people that did come out to support that do know me or some of the other creative wonderful people that have been key in making this happen THANK YOU!!!  2 more times, tonight at 8, tomorrow at 2, $10 buys you a ticket in advance.  Thank you. 

Friday, January 11, 2013

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

2 days out

So we're two days away from an audience.  And I'm going to rehearsal tonight.  There have been changes, some will get in  and some will not.  It's amazing that at this late in the game that everyone involved has been receptive and encouraging enough to entertain change.   And I've been coming up with the questions I'd like asked during the audience in talk backs.  There is a great article written by David Rush that talks about a model for post-performance discussion of plays and how writers should prepare and things that should and shouldn't be asked of an audience.  So I've prepared those questions.   Here we go! 

Monday, January 7, 2013

"Welcome Home"

In 4 short days, my play will be on a stage, with actors, in front of an audience.  It's taken 8 years to get to this place.  It's been an exercise in patience.  It started as an exercise in writing at CSU Summer Arts in 2004.   It started with a character named Lydia.  Then Caroline emerged in another writing exercise.  Lydia evolved into Lavinnea, Caroline's mother.  The funeral scene was the first scene written of this play.   There were scenes written, patched together and called a play.  It was read publicly at the University Heights Arts Festival in 2006?? in the Diversionary Space.  My friend Anthony read Lavinnea.  The audience, art walk patrons, laughed.  My friend John, a retired writer, told me to pay attention to that.  This was unpolished.  They laughed.  A lot.   I tried to rewrite.  I should mention now that the Summer Arts workshop was my first exploration in depth at playwriting beyond my one introduction to playwriting class at UCSD.  A second draft was written.  Bad execution of play and reading.  Killing off a major character didn't work.  Play went into hiding.  Kept writing.  The girls kept coming back to haunt me.  John kept bugging me.  Last November he called, cancer came back.  Last January, he produced a staged reading, this time at Twiggs, this time he heard some new stuff before he left us all.  It has now evolved into around 90 pages (we keep cutting stuff out of the play so I'm guessing at this point.)  You all get to see it Friday

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Short Story "Purple Cloud" Prompts for Writers

So I subscribe to Creative Writing Prompts blog. Considering the fact that I spent the first day of 2013 watching Serenity and the Walking Dead, sci-fi was a great prompt for me today.   Hope you enjoy:

She noticed a purple cloud floating toward her.  Unable to move, her heart pounding, eyes wide she knew what was next.  The hit from the nerve ray had left her unable to move and with the knowledge these were her last few moments.    So many times she had seen what was left of someone.  So many times she helped eviscerate what was left of the body.  As it grew closer she noticed the flecks of blue, pulsations and waves that intertwined in the cloud.  There was a strange yet deadly beauty to it. 
As it grew near, the noise started.   Buzzing, not quite like insects yet not like electricity either, growing louder as the cloud floated innocently towards her.  It reminded her of watching clouds across the sky in her home planet.  Clouds, beautiful and strange, coming across the sky, unsure of the malicious content they might contain towards the end.  Clouds that used to carry water contained acid, growing more erosive, then eventually, taking the skin.  These were her reasons for leaving.  Finding someplace else, possibly finding a cure for the ills of her planet.  But someplace else wasn’t always welcoming to others.  And they didn’t leave welcome wagons, in fact, they left bodies behind as warnings.  Don’t come back and tell everyone what we’ll do if they come.  But the desperate with no place to go can only keep moving.   
As the cloud moved near, the noise grew louder and the colors began to change.  She noticed the size of the cloud began to grow but there was a strange tingling in her feet.   The feeling was coming back into her body!  “MOVE!” her thoughts screamed, dragging her limbs until she got to her hands and feet.    Five feet to her pod, five feet and she might be safe from the beam, ‘five feet’ she hoped as she got to her feet and took her step towards the pod, seeing the shadow of the cloud in front of her, and then nothing.  

@2013 Jennie Olson Six