I’ve been back on a reading tear. Well I don’t know if that’s the right way to say it. I guess I’m just back to my typical reading pace. A full-length a day on average. With the festival gearing up and opening, I wasn’t able to read a whole lot of plays. Producing six productions in rep, and directing one of them, eats up a bit of your day.
Submissions haven’t slowed down much. Since last August, the number is creeping up towards eight-hundred. On average I can get through five or so a week. The volume is tough, but when coupled with our production calendar, sometimes it’s good for me to take a step back.
Right now we can only really afford two productions (though one of those slots this fall is actually two shows in rep) and the festival. Maybe in the future, if we are able to someday secure our own space, that number may rise. But for now, only two slots per year.
I find myself reading good scripts and wondering if I’m giving them a fair treatment. If they are not GREAT; if they do not have a chance of being one of the top two; if they are a few tweaks from being great, do I just pass? Do I try and dig down and find a diamond in the rough, that could be polished a bit more? That stack still keeps growing.
I know I could just cut off submissions. We don’t concentrate solely on new works anyway. It’d be pretty easy.
Our submissions policy is pretty open. But contrary to what I expected, (and a lot of what I used to get) the more I opened them up, the more really strong scripts I started getting. You’d think more just means more, umm, well more crap. But that hasn’t’ really been the case. Well, I do get a lot of scripts that aren’t so hot. But the depth of quality and the diverse range of works we’ve gotten has surprised me.
Then I remind myself we can only do two shows a year. I have to keep on track. Some days I do better than others. We don’t have staff, a space, or salaries. We can’t really develop work yet, we can only produce two a year and a festival.
It’s another thing I’m trying to balance—feeling like a glutton for punishment vs. trying to nurture talented folks. More on that to come. . .