Snow White Writing is a weekly writing segment where I write about my writing journey and share some of my works as well.
It was only when I was a college student that I was exposed to plays. Really, I didn’t have Shakespeare in high school, and the most ‘intense’ piece of literature I had to read then were abridged versions of The Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde, and The Phantom of the Opera. Even so, I think it’s a definite that I love plays—Samuel Beckett, William Shakespeare, they’re my favorite playwrights thus far.
However, like many things, writing plays (especially when given a word limit) is challenging, and I had another stressful experience of writing under the guidance of my present CW (Creative Writing) lecturer. Yay? Nay. As I’ve mentioned in my previous Snow White Writing post about Poetry, the way my current CW lecturer teaches is a complete one-eighty from the way my college one taught. While one is more vocally supportive, understanding and open to ideas, the other provides more vague feedback and prefers the trial-and-error method instead.
Truthfully, I prefer the trial-and-error method but that is only when I’m provided with constructive criticism as well. After all, I find no point in correcting something when one doesn’t know what’s wrong with it to begin with, particularly when the corrections carried out might not even be the ones that are needed at all, no?
Anyway, the very first play I’ve ever written was one for Writer’s Craft (college) and it’s a walking cliche. No, I’m not even exaggerating here. We were given the theme of ‘Teenagers’ or something like that, and well…I wrote some sort of John Green slash Nicholas Sparks…thing. It was titled Believe (Oh Gods, what was I thinking??), it wasn’t pretty, and my then-lecturer agreed.
The next play I wrote was for my drama class (college too) and it was definitely better. My classmates and I had to write about an issue we’re facing today and I decided to go with teenage suicide. (I know, here I go writing about darker things again.) It’s less cringe-worthy and involves a whole bunch of talking cats because I had just finished reading Kafka on the Shore at that time. So yes, a homage of sorts to Nakata.
So, guess what kind of play I wrote for my Creative Writing module in university after the lecturer banned animals, while I was still in one of my highs for one of my favourite ships? Why yes, a fan-play where some things have been changed in order for it to be acceptable for my module! (I swear, my lecturer will certainly murder me if she ever finds out how I’ve been practically going through loopholes since the beginning of her classes, hah.) This one took more than five drafts, lots of headaches because we’re strictly supposed to “write what you know” only, and lots of laughter and love as well. I know a several people hate bromances and the female version of that, and how fangirls ship male/fanboys ship female characters together (although I fine it questioning that it’s apparently ‘wrong’ for straight people to have bent ships, but not vice versa?), but bear with me. I’ve been dying to challenge myself to write something LGBTQ in years, and this was a perfect chance for it to be professionally(?) reviewed as well.
Performance writing will be a part of my second semester again in my upcoming academic year, and I’m looking forward to tackling other topics that I’ve yet to write about. Perhaps a comedic scandal, or a Greek tragedy, or maybe even something close to my heart?
Have you ever written a play before? Did you like it? What was it about?