I wrote plays in college and they ended up being produced. None of us knew about dramaturgy, the art of gently prying the script from the playwritght's hands and getting it into production in a way that benefits everyeone. I didn't know how to parse and understand criticism. I didn't know how to separate my powerful emotional wounds and colors from the ways that I needed to write about them.
So it came to pass that when I wrote my third play "All's Fair," I wrote about some personal stuff and I didn't have anyone to talk to me about how I'd written it and how to make it more effective, or anything. Playwriting had been incredibly lonely, even though the world was supportive and my shows seemed to do well.
"All's Fair" kicked me into a serious shame spiral and I had already been struggling with real life and my personal U-Haul of baggage anyway, and that's how I ended up "forgetting" about playwriting. I didn't make a conscious decision that it wasn't the thing I was born to do. I didn't say "let's just put this aside for a while and focusing on being a healthier human" or "let's focus on an easier form like songwriting" or anything.
I just truly forgot that playwriting is my thing. I forgot. I think this is fascinating. As someone surviving trauma, I know all about memory. Memory is a good place to hide things from ourselves as much as it's an open filing cabinet. When I was asked to rewrite one of my plays in 2015, I said yes, and I wrote my ass off, but I still had the same uncomfortable, why am I doing this alone? Why is this so hard to figure out? How can I possibly reveal these deep truths about myself? kinds of questions. It wasn't fun.
But the leviathan was surfacing and it wasn't going away. I love the idea that this piece of me slowly, undeniably, and often scarily has floated to the surface. It was always there. It was always huge, It hid for as long as it could and now it's here, a sea monster representing all the vulnerability and work and challenge. It knows I'm ready.