It’s time to come clean, as it were. I’ve been writing and working whenever I can, as you all know. That’s resulted in the first draft of a play, and now it’s time to do the title reveal as I steadily edit, condense and refine the second draft.
The play’s working title is “The Sludge Ship Chronicles.” What, you’re asking, is a sludge ship? Well, it’s a ship that carries sludge, obviously. In the bad, old days, empty sludge ships filled their cargo holds with raw human waste from sewers. Then, they went far out to sea where they simply dumped their cargo. They returned to port and loaded up again. Apparently, this is no longer done although sludge ships do still exist (in New York City, for example), but now simply transport sludge between processing centers, without releasing the raw stuff into the environment. Something to think about next time you flush the toilet.
So, why did I decide to write a whole play about a sludge ship? Well, I’m merely using it (it’s true!) as a metaphor for something else. And as a plot device. As to what that “something else” is, I’ll hold off on getting into the details for now.
A few more notes on the play. It’s set in a medieval kingdom with an uncanny resemblance to Britain. So, the sludge ship is not like the one in the photo, but of the old sailing type. If it all sounds a bit hammy, it’s meant to be. It’s a comedy/satire. I could go into the plot, the characters and all that now—but I feel that’s getting a bit ahead of myself. I prefer to save that until after a final draft is done, or maybe even later.
The one big concern I have for the play is marketing it. I’ve tried to not worry about this and I don’t overly worry about marketing my stuff anymore. But every writer wants to see their stuff get out there. And I simply don’t have any experience marketing a play. So my plan is to find a local playhouses or festival that is willing to accept plays from new playwrights. I’ve just begun this process. M—, my friend, has put me in touch with his brother who has some experience in such things and I’m hoping to get some tips from him. But I know it will be very different from submitting short stories and novellas like I’ve done in the past. People simply have to invest more in a play (making sets, hiring actors, selling tickets), so the barrier to entry is higher. I have a lurking suspicion that the writing of the play will be the easiest part of it. If anyone out there has any experience with or tips about marketing plays, I’d love to hear from you in the comments section.
Alright, that’s all for now. I will let you know when I arrive at a manuscript I feel is ready to submit. All for now. I’ll see you next time.