100 word play
Tasha came over last night, more to get a hug after a crappy day than any set reason, I think, and we sat on the sofa doing little whilst watching tv.
One of the reasons we get on so well (apart from my ability to ignore the most rip-roaring of farts that she can unleash) is that Tasha and I think along very similar lines. Earlier in the day I had been thinking about what we could write about to finally fulfill that promise we’d made to commit something (anything!) to paper at last. I’d put the grain of an idea at the back of my mind as T was clearly keen to talk about her day, when apropos of nothing she declared that she’d had an idea with regards to writing.
Now, in an ideal world, this blog post would finish with our ideas synchronising and some work being started on it. But this is me, after all, and after a poor nights sleep I am typing this out before 7am and I have to admit that I’m buggered if I can remember what her idea was. (Don’t judge me. Tasha will read this post later on today and will no doubt struggle to remember too). However, it was reassuring that we’d both given the writing idea some - albeit it little - thought.
The One Show was on in the background and a few minutes after we’d touched on the script ideas, the presenter announced that a theatre somewhere (it’s early. Details aren’t important) was looking for scripts for small plays to hang on their wall. The only criteria being a minimum of two characters and a maximum of 100 words. Entries were to be emailed into The One Show.
My brain whizzed quickly. If we could… And if we hurried… Maybe… I turned to my right to address Tasha, who was staring at me, wide-eyed, expectedly and excitedly. (I’d compare it to a sexual tension, but truth be told it was more like the moment that you realise your fart felt far more liquid than it should, and that you’ll probably follow through if you don’t get to a toilet quickly).
“We should enter!” an animated Tasha told me. I don’t think I even responded with an agreement, merely with “We should start at the end and work backwards.”
I had my laptop open and booted up Word. I started with the final line of the piece - a quick, cheap play on words that Tasha told me when we first met, and one that we both repeat often. I threw down a few more lines of basic dialogue between two characters to build up to the finale. Tasha tweaked the wording, we both decided that a stage movement should be scaled down and within twenty minutes or so we had our piece. Short and sweet, it had a humorous (albeit not overly funny) finish, dialogue that worked well and met the criteria needed.
We mused on a title. I once had some feedback on a script I’d written saying that the title made little sense alongside the script contents, so my immediate thought was that it should reflect the end joke without giving it away. I jotted down a couple of suggestions, more to have something to work with rather than anything that was likely to be immediately accepted by either of us. Tasha politely but firmly told me they weren’t good enough (which I’d known to be fair) and came up with an alternative which we used. It was pithy and tied to the ending, though I am today thinking - perhaps over critically - that we could have tweaked the story a tiny bit to further strengthen the title.
We sent it off, 100 words exactly. Our first collaboration.
Strangely I don’t feel it is good enough to be chosen as a winner, even though I am bizarrely proud of something that took relatively little time. When I’m back home I shall post the story up here, for posterity.
“Did we plaguarise that?” Tasha asked me.
I ignored her gaze, replying softly “There are NO original ideas put there any more.” A vague acceptance that our idea has been done before though in our defence, not in this way.
Location: Costa, Chelmsford