Catching Up to the Present

Pinkystage

Puppeteers at work—an archival photo from 1976

In 2009, after talking for years about wanting to write a one-man-show called ‘Wretch Like Me,’ I finally did it, I wrote the show—and my life hasn’t been quite the same since. If I could travel back in time—and it’s probably a good thing I can’t—one change I might make is to have begin blogging way back at the beginning, when I first took on the task of facing my childhood years and teenage days, back when I was a committed, overly earnest young Christian puppeteer (that’s me in the picture, behind my puppet stage; I’m the one on the right), and turning that time—and my eventual decision to walk away from the church—into a wild and wooly, dramatically comedic, one-actor performance piece. I’ve performed it something like 60 or 70 times, for thousands of people, and the feedback has been extraordinary.

All of that—the process of developing the show,  bringing it to the stage, performing it all over Northern California—will likely be covered in the future, as I attempt to catch the past of ‘Wretch Like Me’ to the present.

Since writing the show, I’ve written three other plays: an radio-theater adaptation of ‘Plan 9 from Outer Space,’ an unauthorized adaptation of Saint-Exupery’s ‘The Little Prince’ (nope, no one can read it until certain rights issues are worked out; but it’s pretty good, I’ve been told), and my award-winning romantic comedy ‘Pinky,’ also based on events from my teenage days. Here’s a fun tidbit about ‘Pinky,’ by the way. See the picture up there at the top? See the long-haired girl to my left? That’s the real Pinky. Or the back of her head, anyway.

Anyway . . . eventually, as I moved on to those other projects, I always knew I’d return to ‘Wretch’ some day, in part because from the very beginning, my goal for the show was to take it across the Atlantic Ocean, to the Edinburgh Fringe Festival. I am currently back in the rehearsal room, working with director Sheri Lee Miller, taking a newly revised script through the steps of getting it battle ready for Edinburgh, where it will be competing for audience eyes against something like 650 shows a day. And I’ve been acquiring all kinds of new skills as I launch a crowd funding campaign, build a new website (www.wretch-like-me.org), create promotional videos, and all kind of other things that have pushed my creative side to its growing edge.

So, I thought it might be time to start that blog.

In these pages, over the coming months, I plan to do more than just tell the behind the scenes stories of Team Wretch, as we go through the next five months of preparations, then travel to Edinburgh and do 14 shows over 16 days, and finally return home to whatever other adventures await for ‘Wretch Like Me.’ I plan to use this blog to tell other stories, to remark on current events that intersect with the subject matter of my show, to follow whatever conversational tangent my brain takes me on.

I hope you will become a follower, which you can do my clicking on the button FOLLOW. It’s somewhere on this page. I hope, too, that as I post new information about the show, new videos and photos, and new links to interesting sites, that you will take those little field trips with me, and check out some of the stuff I plan to share.

Thanks for joining me in the roller coaster car. I think we’re going to enjoy this ride.

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