My new year’s resolution is to stop writing short plays.
It’s not that I don’t love writing short pieces. They’re a brilliant way to experiment with different styles and voices and characters. They’re (relatively) quick to do. And there are so many new writing nights – from scratch nights like Blackshaw, to well established slots like Rapid Write Response at Theatre 503 and the Miniaturists at the Arcola – that it’s eminently doable to get short stuff on.
The problem is, it’s so alluring to write a quick, short piece, it takes all my attention away from writing something full-length. And full-length stuff is hard. It takes a completely different approach to structure. You can busk structure for 15 mins. You can rely on character and dialogue and one simple idea. You really can’t do that if you’re asking an audience to stick with you for an hour or more.
Hence, I’m giving up short plays to start editing the long play that’s been sitting in a drawer for the last 4 months. Which I’ll be looking at from this week with the unique writerly mix of excitement and trepidation.
Watch this space.