I have pages and pages of notes, little sections of dialogue that I’m writing all the time.1 Some go back many years, some are more recent.2 And when I know that I have a play that I have to do in the future, or sometimes when I fantasize of it, “Oh, I got to have a play ready in case something comes up,” I’ll look through that pile of notes, and look for some interesting pages, and I might find an interesting page, let’s say, that’s about somebody in a dentist’s chair.
And I think that’s an interesting page. Hmm, I wonder if there’s anything else in these hundreds of pages that might relate to that in some way. And I start looking for other things that in some way I might put with it, and that’s how I grow a beginning text. Then when it’s time to — it gets closer to going into rehearsal, I look at all that stuff, I rearrange it, I rewrite it and rewrite it, but it grows organically that way.3 And then I discover that what this play was really about, wasn’t exactly about a dentist, but it was about somebody who can’t handle fear for instance, and I don’t know that when I begin.