What a story, Mark

Writings and Ramblings

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Love Me, America

In first semester I took a wonderful subject called Script for Performance. It really challenged me as a writer, and I did make some wonderful friends from my class. 
Our final assessment was a performance and a full written piece.

I cannot explain to you all how terrified I was, taking to the stage again. I realised I was a shit actress at about the age of seventeen, and gave it away. I never expected a subject to ask me to tread the boards again, but I really enjoyed it.

I’m very interested in politics, and for a long time I’ve been fascinated with America. This script was very much inspired by the real-life rhetoric of some of the Republican nominees from late 2011 and early 2012. However, a few other sources were my inspiration. Spalding Gray’s confessional, storytelling performance style seen in ‘Swimming to Cambodia’ and ‘Monster In a Box’.  This performance also attempts to draw on the ‘diverse culture of confession’that can be seen on contemporary chat shows, show trials, and in churches.
 Additionally, I was very interested by storytelling pieces from the New York nonprofit organisation ‘The Moth’, in particular the authentic, autobiographical performances ‘Fameishness’ by Steve Burns and ‘Bronx Burning’ by Tom Ziegler. 
This extended piece is a satire, taking the form of three scenes, the Senator’s monologue, a short scene between the Senator and his wife Nancy, and lastly, a monologue from Nancy. 

I was not altogether thrilled with the final piece. I was rather proud of the first monologue and greatly enjoyed performing it. I would even love to do it again sometime. It did not really come together in the second and third scene, I don’t think. And just this week I saw the film ‘Bob Roberts’ and dearly wished I could be just as brilliant.
I would be interested if anyone who reads this blog has any comments or criticisms they would like to offer. Thanks for reading, you can find the whole piece under the cut. 

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Filed under creative writing script

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I’m sorry that I forget to update this blog a lot. I really do enjoy sharing my writing online, whether people read it or not. 

The reality - I have a 56,000 word document full of unpublished stuff. 
Another reality - it takes me ages to post anything because 100% of the time I believe that my work is shit. 

I’ll try to be better. I think in the past week or two I’ve written close to five thousand words, not bad for somebody who is supposedly a full time student. 

Thank you all for reading. 
 

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'Hi, Tash.'
His voice is dry and thin on the end of the line. He doesn’t have to say it. She knows something’s wrong. 
'Is that you?' She asks, winding a hand round the telephone cord to steady herself. She doesn't use his name. He doesn't like her using his name when he's acting like this.  
There’s a staccato hiss of breath. 
'It's me. I'm coming home.' 

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Ninel



Evening.

That strange, muted time between light and dark had settled over the train station like a fine curtain. Tired, sun-bruised race goers removed their sunglasses and mumbled together. They hobbled forth on broken feet, tied the straps of broken dresses, sneaked last sips of champagne and mourned the fifty dollars they had lost on ‘Winslow Circus’ in the eighth. Flimsy chiffon and crinkled satin dresses wavered in the breeze. Broad hats were pulled down low over reddened eyes.

Ninel was the only woman on the platform still wearing her high heels.

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Max


Afternoon.
He was holding his mum’s hand. Her long, blue skirt fluttered across him like a delicate butterfly’s wing, shielding him from view. Max was always proud to walk with his mum. She was tall and blonde, with soft hands that smelled of jasmine.


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Percy





Morning.

The fresh cry of pigeons hiccupped from the trees. A few streets away, a tram rumbled past, vaguely echoing in the corner of his mind. His alarm hadn’t pierced the room, but somehow, telepathically, Percy already knew he was late.

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About three years ago I collaborated with my best friend Jess on one of his final projects, a storybook. I wrote the stories, he designed the book/drew the pictures. What we ended up with was ‘Three’, a collection of three stories about three different characters in Melbourne. We ended up with three books printed, too. One for Jess, one for me, and one for the family of a late dear friend, whom the book was dedicated to. The stories aren’t very polished. They were basically unedited, and have been mostly unread. I thought I’d put them up here. They aren’t very good, but this is my writing blog and only this way can I improve! So after this post, I’ll post the stories about Percy, Max and Ninel. Also, please visit Jess at his website here, to see his work and more beautiful drawings.  www.jessmcgeachin.com :-)

About three years ago I collaborated with my best friend Jess on one of his final projects, a storybook. I wrote the stories, he designed the book/drew the pictures.
What we ended up with was ‘Three’, a collection of three stories about three different characters in Melbourne. We ended up with three books printed, too. One for Jess, one for me, and one for the family of a late dear friend, whom the book was dedicated to.

The stories aren’t very polished. They were basically unedited, and have been mostly unread. I thought I’d put them up here. They aren’t very good, but this is my writing blog and only this way can I improve!

So after this post, I’ll post the stories about Percy, Max and Ninel.

Also, please visit Jess at his website here, to see his work and more beautiful drawings.  www.jessmcgeachin.com

:-)

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Five First Lines For The Novel I Never Wrote.

1. I remember the day well. September the seventh.

 
2. 
When they first met he was standing on the side of the road, hands jammed into pockets and glaring at the gutter.

 
3. Charlie was always meticulous about time.

4. It was six thirty in the morning and Arthur was eating chocolate cake.

5. They were both tall and dark-haired, but the similarities ended after that.

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To my friend.

You would have been twenty four on Friday, twenty fucking four. That’s old, Ed. Do you feel old? 
Even if you had grown older with us you still would have been young. Tearing through life, grasping at every opportunity, loving so deeply and with the whole of your heart.

And you were always laughing. Everything was hilarious. I’ll never forget your laugh. It was comedy in itself, a guttural snicker that was buried in the back of your throat. 

You selfless, beautiful bastard. Everyone loved you, everyone remembers you. 
Your wonderful family gave me a framed photo of you for Christmas. You’re in the water and you’re dancing. It is a beautiful photo and I treasure it. 

I love you. I would do anything for half an hour of your wisdom. I hope you’re in a good place. In that beautiful painted coffin all colours of the rainbow. 
I’ll keep this short. You can’t expect too much of me, you dickhead! I’m smiling and crying now, you always bloody do this to me. 

We all miss you. Just wanted to let you know that your face danced across my mind on Friday. 

Love forever. 

 

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Notes on the Black Dog

I’ve been thinking of writing this for a long time. None of what I say here is new or groundbreaking, but I felt I would share it anyway.

There is nothing so isolating as depression. You feel as if you are on the outer edge of society, pushed aside, overlooked, a burden to your friends and family. You second guess your every word, thought and action. A friend’s offhand remark can be taken personally, piercing your heart. It’s as if someone has pressed the mute button on your personality. And worst of all, sometimes, in that dull, blue stretch between 2 and 6am, you really feel like you’ll never feel happiness again. 

But it’s not true. You can, and you will. Two years later you’ll be in a pub shouting along to the Black Keys and you’ll feel such a rush of joy and vitality that you never would have thought possible. You will have happiness and you will know love.
Please remember this. It can get very dark, and you don’t have much battery left in your torch. But you are not alone. You are so loved. You are important to someone. Don’t ever turn out that light. Speak out. Tell someone close to you. Nobody will think any less of you. Depression is not failure and nor is it weakness. 

I direct this specifically to the young men out there. There is help for everyone. It is not somehow ‘less manly’ to admit you’ve been having such thoughts. And it’s not wrong to ask a mate how he is going. Keep an eye on your friends. Too many beautiful young men have been lost to that vicious black dog.

If this post makes someone think twice, then I have succeeded. I say this with love and hope in my heart. 

Thanks for reading.