Tuesday, July 31, 2007

The Blog is Back.

I have decided to bring this blog out of its temporary retirement. I have been too busy writing other things lately, but plan to designate more time to this in the months to come. I have been thinking of doing another 30 day challenge, but am afraid I have used up all the good stuff. My life apparently comes down to 30 posts. So I am trying to think up a more specific or different 30 day challenge...any ideas, dear readers? If so, leave a comment.

In the land of recent activity, I worked 125 hours (seriously!) last week due to the Del Close Marathon, which is an annual foray into controlled chaos that we at the UCB stage for the enjoyment of improv nerds from around the country. As usual I got to see almost no improv since I was running around doing damage control every spare second, and taking any nap I could. I had to miss my much anticipated sketch workshop with Matt Besser due to my work schedule which sucked, but otherwise I managed to keep it together. Sort of.

Here's a numerical overview of this year's DCM

Total sleep time (Friday morning to Monday morning) = 7.5 hours*
Total alcohol consumed = Several gallons
Total number of improv shows I got to watch in their entirety = 2**
Total Number of cigarettes smoked = 428***
Total of cute out of town boys flirted with = 3
Total number of makeout sessions = 0
Total Number of hours I worked a day, on average = 15
Total Number of workshops signed up for = 2
Total Number of workshops attended = 1
Total number of breakdowns = 3

*2.5 hours Saturday morning
1.5 hours Saturday night
3.5 hours Sunday morning

**Police Chief Rumble and Bruckheimer -- both wonderfully awesome.

***This is probably a lie.

Other highlights:

-Kevin Dorff showing up with a bag filled with 25 packs of cigarettes for the DCM staff
-Having awesome interns helping out every other second without being asked
-Shirt Swap!! If you don't know what this is, just use your imagination
-Sitting in a corner at the closing party quietly weeping.

I will be on a much needed vacation this week but the blog shall continue....


Blogger Peter said...

Glad the blog is back. Sorry that I missed this year's DCM. Up to my neck with a novel and pages upon pages of student writing from the Summer II creative writing class I'm teaching. Read. Write. Write. Read. Eat. Anyway, I stumbled across your blog during your run-up to your run. Didn't know we had more in common than UCB (I used to haunt the ol' Scrap Bar whenever I stumbled into NYC from my life as a road-dog in the 80s). Anyway, I got a chance to catch your sketch show a few weeks back, but you were gone before I could say "Hi." Funny stuff. You always crack me up. So, the 30 Day challange: are you thinking fiction or non-fiction stuff? I have a few ideas, stuff I challange my students with, that I could maybe pass along. Let me know. Peace. Peter (Helff!)

9:52 PM  
Blogger Rachael Mason said...

I am enertaining all ideas, so throw anything my way...fiction might be a bit much as I often have about 5 mintues to post, but who knows? Nice to hear from you Peter!

3:13 PM  
Blogger Peter said...

One exercise that I find helpful when creating characters and scenarios is to take an incident that involved at least two people, then write about what happened in a first-person monolgue (a wedding, a schoolyard fight, a traffic accident, anything really), and then write about the same incident from the other person's perspective. Then, create another incident that involved that person and another person (different from the first person), and repeat the exercise. You've just established a "voice" that you can carry forward, as well as a scene with conflict. The results can be dramatic, comedic, or a little of both. Anyway, keep it going as long as you can (they don't need to be long, and avoid "That's not how it happened," as it's about character and perspective, not arguments and dialogue. You can use things from your own life to start. When you get to the final scenario (I guess if you're doing thirty, it would be number 15, if my math is correct, which it sometimes is), wrap it up by bringing the first person back. You'd be surprised how freeing and organic this exercise is, and it's fun. And of course, it'll take on a life of its own and there are no hardened rules to it. If you don't like this, I have more. Hope it helps, and looking forward to seeing what comes of it in your hands. Best, Peter.

10:11 PM  

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