The Art of Rewriting

This past February and March I taught The Art of Rewriting at the Dramatist Guild Institute. On the last day of class I asked my students, all smart and talented and generous, to tell me six things they'd learned during the six weeks of class. I wanted to make sure they'd learned SOMETHING, it was important to me that they took a few nuggets away. So we started. They called out words and phrases and I wrote them down with a blue marker on a large white board. Here's the first side of the board. As you can see, we got to seven...

But they kept calling out what they'd learned and luckily there was another side of the board and it was empty. So I filled that up, too.

We got to fourteen and then we stopped. And then we added one more before we left the room. It was a good class. I'm teaching again in May and June. Email me if you're interested in taking part.

The Audience

Originally printed in The Dramatist

Denver Center Theater, a cold January night. The last preview for INANA has ended. A museum curator has fallen deeply and unexpectedly in love.  An artist has given up his life’s work in exchange for his daughter’s safe passage out of the country. A wife has complained that her husband is in love with another woman. All the characters are Iraqi.
The audience files into the lobby. I am standing in the back. A wide-eyed woman approaches me. She asks if I’m the author. I tell her yes. She says to me, “I had no idea. They’re just like us.”