The last couple years I’ve been doing lots of small things, lots of things that have amounted to more things and things that I have been proud of. Things. Yeah, them things. But for the last year I’ve been aching to concentrate on my full length plays because that’s what I’m in this to do, right? Right. I haven’t had time because each year seems to get busier with my career and choices. That’s why I’ve been quiet because I’ve been busy.
So. I’ve been mulling on this idea since I asked my dad, “if I wrote a play about lorry drivers, would you come to the theatre?” He promptly laughed and said “yeah, I suppose so“. Two years later and I’ve finally got a finished version of the script that I’m happy to send out and for people to read. A former (unfinished and horribly clunky) version of the script, which is called Shifting, has been sent around and got great responses:
“This script immediately brings us into a marginal roadside world seldom portrayed on stage and screen. Vivid empathic characters and character-driven dialogue support the script’s ability to mine the drama from seemingly mundane relationships… Overall, I enjoyed this script and the fresh world it portrays.”
New Writing Co-ordinator
“A fascinating world drawn with real compassion and wit and humanity.”
“Interesting ensemble piece exploring the lives of long distance truck drivers and their families. The writer captures wonderfully the colloquial comic and brash language of this world creating a setting populated with interesting and original characters.”
“… Here at the National, we don’t normally give formal feedback, but I did want to pass on some thoughts from our readers. We felt Shifting was the most successful, and we enjoyed its sweetness, truthfulness and intimacy…”
Assistant Literary Manager
It also placed well in the Verity Bargate Award (4th round) and I can safely say it’s the most epic story I’ve taken on in terms of staging, amount of characters and narrative. But I’m proud of it. I’m tempted to say it’s the best thing I’ve written, but I think every writer says that about the current thing they’re working on. Who cares, I’m chuffed I’ve finished it. And thank you to those who read it and gave feedback, they know who they are.
Alongside finishing this and starting the turbulent process of sending it out to people, I’ve made a strong mental decision to stick at home and spend less money and more time on writing all the ideas I have. This means not going into London unless I absolutely have to. Which does make me a little sad, but I kind of have no choice. There are books I’ve wanted to read since I can remember, films I’ve not opened for even longer and scripts I want to rework. I’m a funny fucker when it comes to time, mostly because it scares the crap out of me. But also because I always say I’ll do something tomorrow and I never do. And I mean I NEVER do and I hate that. I’ve now made the difficult decision and in the longterm I’m happy, it feels good. This was a different script for me. Each script is challenging me at every turn. If I compare each script I’ve written in the long form they differ drastically and this excites me. I’m constantly challenging myself and letting the story have its way with me and not mangling it to please anyone else. This script I’ve just finished reminded me of why I want to do this. Now I’ve just got to get people to read it.