The Meera Project

I’m in India for the next 10 weeks. It is abysmally hot here in Chennai, which discourages me from even trying to step out of the house. Which could be a positive thing. Also, I get fed and clothed, I have my computer and an Internet connection, and all of my childhood books around me. Ideal conditions for a writing retreat.

Well, maybe except for the Internet connection.

Still, now that I’m on vacation, I really have no excuse for not finally writing about writing.

I’m starting a new project that has been rolling about my brain for almost a couple of years now, and which I started thinking about more intensely for the past few months, in the middle of a very busy semester. I’m excited to finally get the chance to work on it. I’m giving myself the luxury of the whole summer- the next ten weeks- to write it. Allowing plenty of time for thinking, research, and playing around. Most of my writing in the MFA is under a lot of stress and deadlines, while juggling multiple projects, so I’m looking forward to devoting myself to one story alone (for the most part).

The project is a play tentatively titled Meera.

It is essentially inspired in equal parts by three stories:

The Meerabai legend.

Harold Pinter’s The Lover.

Crazy Mohan’s Chocolate Krishna. 

At the moment, as of today, I have a fairly firm idea of the beginning. A kind of vague idea about the middle. No idea at all about the end. But the characters have taken hold of me, and although every new project is just as difficult as the last, I have a feeling I’m going to enjoy this one more than most.

I’ll use this blog to do my meta work. The research, the ruminations, the inspiration, the grumblings. The writing on the writing. And maybe people will be interested in following along on my process.

It’s tough working outside the built-in structure and support of a writing program. Last summer I used Twitter to inspire myself to write 10 pages a day over the course of a week- a sort of kamikaze approach to playwriting- and I wound up with a promising first draft that I then refined and rewrote over the course of a semester. A play called Monkey Love (which still needs another page one rewrite, but that’s for another time).Hopefully ,this summer, keeping this blog will encourage me to keep moving every day.

Page Count: 0.