I am a big ol’ liar. I said I'd blog about the Conference each night, and then I did no such thing. It was so much more intense than I thought it could be! I had a great time meeting theater makers from across the country, and learned a TON from the fantastic panels and discussions each day. Want to know what I made it to? Well…
Thursday included: “Copyright: Can I Do That?” as well as a one-on-one talk with John Logan (author of Red, which I just read for my Once A Spy research!).
Friday included: “Playwrights And The New Play Exchange,” with Gwydion Suilebhan, whom I was so excited to finally meet in person (one of the great things about the conference was that I got to meet a ton of folks that I'd previously only interacted with online), “Creating A Scripted Webseries,” with Susan Miller, creator of Anyone But Me, “DG Conflict Resolutions,” where we listened to what steps we can take if a theater removes lines or makes other changes to your play without your permission, among other tricky things, “How To Use Vector Theory To Structure Your Plot,” because I'm a structure nerd, “The Global Impact of Diversity On Our Stages,” which had five terrific playwrights tackling the subject, “Beyond Emerging: The Stages Of A Writer's Life,” and then MARSHA NORMAN gave a keynote speech! Which was amazing. And then we were presented with the finding of The Count, a Lily Award and Dramatists Guild program aimed to uncover who is getting produced. Lisa Kron and Julie Jordan also spoke!
Saturday I nearly had a brain melt, but I rallied to enjoy “Reshaping The Color Purple,” any excuse to be in the room with Marsha Norman, “Synopsis Writing,” led by Roland Tec and was so, so, SO helpful, he gave us easy to use guidelines and really broke it down in a simple way, then I headed to, “Comedy Across Mediums,” followed by, “How A Play Starts; How It Stops,” then, “La Jolla Playhouse,” and finally, “Women Writing Women,” before I hid myself in a dark corner before the final event I was able to attend: “Celebrating Stephen Schwartz.”
Sunday I drove home and yesterday I slept, and today I'm still feeling a little tired from all of that information overload of the weekend. But it was great. It energized me (in addition to exhausting me), and made me eager to jump back into projects. I met new playwrights, and learned a ton.
The thing that struck me the most though, was the staff from the Dramatists Guild, and their attitude toward us. I don't know if I've ever felt so welcome into a group of people before, and their attitude and warmth really spread over the whole conference, so that normally shy playwrights were stepping out of their comfort zones and mingling like champions. So, well done Dramatists Guild! I know you've got at least one playwright very excited for the next conference!