Friday, March 18, 2011

Rejection Numero Dos

I wrote about how my PP play was not chosen for this year's school season, and that same play just got its second rejection. This time, though, I think I know why.

My mom sent me an e-mail almost two months ago with a scanned attachment. It was an article from my local paper at home announcing that a theatre in my home county was taking submissions of pieces by poets, playwrights, and the like for a festival. This was already enough to get me interested, but the article went on to say that this festival's focus was on work that was inspired by other writers' work; the submissions didn't have to fall into this category, but those that did would be given more consideration.

I got very excited. I am a playwright, if a budding one, and my play was a piece directly influenced by J.M. Barrie's novel and play. Perfect!

I sent off the current draft to my critique partner, asking him to get it back to me a few days before I would have to send it off to the committee for perusal. This way, I figured, I'd have time to adjust at least a few things. He complied a few weeks later, I edited, and then off went the e-mail to the theatre.

A response came back almost immediately- I hadn't filled out a form. This was because they hadn't mentioned a form in the advert, but I filled it out and sent it off. Another response came, this time asking if my submission was a full length play. They weren't sure how they'd do with that- they had been looking for shorter pieces, like monologues and poems. What did I expect if my piece were to be chosen?
This irritated me a bit. They hadn't specified what kind of pieces they wanted. If they had only wanted short pieces, no way would I have submitted my ninety-three page script. But I did not show this irritation. Instead, wrote back and said that even a staged reading would be wonderful.

The decisions were made earlier than was expected and I got my "thanks, but no thanks" e-mail on Wednesday. It wasn't unexpected- I knew from the second e-mail, the one that mentioned the length, that my piece wasn't right for the festival. There are also a few other reasons why there would have been small problems. For example, they wanted the playwright/writer to come to dress rehearsals and things like that, which I would normally love to do, but would have been unable, as I'm still in England then. So while it may have been the writing that drove them away, I'm hoping it was one of those issues.

I think my mom was more disappointed than I was that it hadn't been accepted. When I told her the news this afternoon, she started listing other theatres that I should send the play to. I love that she's so supportive, but I know that the play still needs some work. Just as with the school submission of this play, I didn't have enough editing time and had to just send off the copy I had at that moment. To submit it to other theatres, I'm going to need to work on it much more, and I'm happy to do so. I love the play and one day, when it's truly finished, I hope to see it onstage.

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