I finished storyboarding the play for my YA project and I am incredibly excited to get started on the actual writing. I had written the first scene, but was not sure where exactly the play was going, and since I am on REAL DEADLINES like a GROWNUP or something, I decided to plan out the whole thing before proceeding. And now I am finished with that part.
The play will be about a young girl who writes stories for her friends and then she gets into a fight with one of them and writes about it. The story is found and "reported" to the principal, and the main character gets in trouble for it.
Okay that is a very loose description of the plot. The main character also has an older brother who is leaving for college in the fall (or NOT leaving... dun dun DUN) and a best friend who is in his first ever real life relationship, and happens to be gay. Her other best friend is also in a relationship--albeit a much less functional one--and I have a feeling this relationship is going to play into the tension between the two of them at some point. I have also storyboarded for some mysterious phone calls, but might drop that because I am not quite sure where I'm going with that idea.
There are two inspirations from which this play has sprung: the first is a seed of autobiography because I used to write stories for and about my friends all the time; the second is thinking about censorship in YA literature and how much it annoys me when adults get all muddied up what teens "can and can't handle", without ever entering into a dialogue with the teen readers themselves. Although these adults may mean well, I don't think that the literature should be policed in such a way that is simultaneously too careful and FAR too careless. It made me think of how high schools frequently produce "junior" versions of shows, which also really bothers me because if you're already trusting your students with tough subject matter, I don't see what cutting one number or the other will do for your production. I think it's a bastardization of the original text, and that if a play is going to be produced it should be all or nothing.
These are preliminary thoughts that will eventually make their way into my paper, which is chugging right along. I have also redesigned the blog portion of this project: instead of once a week (which I have been slacking on...) I will be posting twice a week until May 11th, which is when the staged reading is scheduled. Wednesday and Saturday, starting this Saturday, will be the regular publication days. Once they are in a more polished form, I will probably be posting sections straight from the paper and maybe even sneak previews of the play!!