Working with John Yorke today in a class at Drama Centre helped me hit on something. I will post more on what John’s teaching has done for me at a later date, for now this quick thing.
An audience does like to work. An audience likes to answer questions. The longer you leave the answer, the greater the enjoyment – the more an audience will supply their own logic and coherence.
I write for several media, and the way I start is different depending on the story and the way I want to organise it. The demands of the medium are to be respected.
My departure point with Blood Leaves was to get into the chaos and bring it to the surface – not to impose too much order too soon. I think where I am going now is a challenge to myself.
I want to be my own audience. First I had to create the chaos, and follow my own clues to a destination – an end. I had an ending, I think that was my only certain when I sat down to write the piece.
Along the way to that end I had to strew a lot of wreckage, or plant a lot of seeds, depending how you want to look at it.
Going into the redrafts I have to be vigourous with myself – I have to make all those edges fit neatly into each other. Not too neatly, but neatly enough that I can craft the story. I am my own audience in this respect, piecing together the story, delaying the conclusion as far as I can to build the climax, imposing an order that doesn’t come too soon. Not until I’ve done enough work to have something to compose.
I hope this journey of mine, from chaos to order, is reflected in the work and brings an audience the same battery of feelings it is bringing me.