Posts tagged writing
On Women Writing, and Writing Women

My MFA program was hit or miss in terms of instructors, but I got stuck with a hard miss on several occasions. This one professor taught all but one of my playwriting workshops, and had a field day throughout my two years there teasing me about only writing female characters. He'd rib me about only wanting to torture men onstage, rib me about writing yet another script that had mostly if not entirely female casts. "You know what I want you to do next quarter?" he said to me once. "I want you to write a good, kind, likable male protagonist…”

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On Slow Dancing

[This is an old personal essay from 2013.]

Have you ever tried to teach someone to slow dance? I never have. I’m not sure I’ve ever slow danced with anyone. Maybe in middle school, I think, to a slow-jam R&B song, and we probably had two feet of space between us, and we probably didn’t make eye contact, not once. That, I’m guessing, I did. I have a vague recollection of one. I recall feeling very warm inside, because at some point, I was telling the boy how nice it was of him to dance with me, that he didn’t have to do that, and he said he wanted to. I remember that. He said he wanted to and I felt very warm inside. There was a certain enchantment around that, I guess…

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On Adolescent Feminism

[This is an old personal essay from 2014.]

I was not a pretty thirteen-year-old. It drove my mother crazy, but I was the kind of thirteen-year-old who wore plaid bondage pants (with very little conception of what bondage really was) and a dog collar. I had a slightly girlier version of the early aughts screamo boy haircut, and I swore like a pint-sized sailor. In middle school, I was the girl who shoved boys around on the soccer field. I was not particularly feminine or demure. Sometime in seventh grade, my father told me he’d still love me if I were interested in girls–what a lovely show on a father’s part, and what a perfect summary of the kind of thirteen-year-old girl I was…

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[This is an old piece of flash fiction.]

Outside the window, all the little roofs hit the same height, and all the little roofs hit the same height, and all the little roofs that hit all the same little heights are the same little roofs of my little thoughts; but the basements vary…

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Where is home, and how do we wreck it?

This is an old piece of personal writing.]

He came on easy, the first one. At the time, I would’ve said: like something romantic and mostly cliché—a sunset, waking up in the morning on your own, a nice buzz from the perfectly slow-sipped cocktail; now, three years later, miles moved on, and I’d say: like a disease, equally cliché and perhaps, in this fucked up world, equally as romantic. I remember feeling relieved when he walked in with his girlfriend way back when, the first time I saw him. Not relieved—who feels relief at the sign of another dead end—but it took some pressure off of meeting him. I look into the corners of every man I meet for that glimpse of something I’ve never really seen before, and their pressurized hand-holding meant I could maintain a safe distance. They locked themselves up in his room for those first few days, and afterwards he emerged. That was how we really met, him homesick and lovesick and me already judging him for it…

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On a Once-Botched Job Interview

[This is an old personal essay from 2014.]

I’m on the job hunt right now, having quit my waitressing job at a terrible, unethical, low-paying sports bar. I went to arts school. I have a degree in theatre and English. I didn’t have to work through high school or college. To summarize: I have few marketable “real world” skills. If you want to have an analytical discussion about a line in Hamlet, come at me, bro; if you’d like me to book a reservation in a specialized restaurant operating system and expect me to have done that for 3+ years already, look elsewhere…

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Thank You So Much

[A bitter, satirical piece not-so-loosely based on a real rejection email I received after a job interview.]

Hey you.

You did such a great job tonight. We know that group interviews can be a little intimidating, especially when we essentially required you to out-interesting everyone in the room, bare a small portion of your soul, and handwrite a 5 sentence introduction script for a stranger on a single notecard in under 60 seconds. Obviously, we did that because we’re a start-up focused on pulling great candid moments out of stuffy business people, and the easiest way for us to find a solid future employee in a crowd is to encourage you all to claw each other’s eyes out to be the quirkiest and most energetic…

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Kirin McCrorywriting, humor
On History's Place in Pop Culture

[This is an old opinion piece from 2014.]

Let’s talk about that argument of historical accuracy for a moment. History's cool, I think it’s valuable to study and understand where we came from, and one of the few ways we can truly move forward. But I am not interested in recreating history, especially as an artist. Why? Because things were fucked up “back then,” which is why they are outdated modes of existence, and why we study them: to learn from our mistakes, to analyze the ways in which we so horribly fucked up, and to attempt, insomuch as we can, not to make the same mistakes again…

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Luther Brice

For the past two summers, I've been fortunate to write pieces for Lynchburg, VA's Old City Cemetery Tour. The way it works, in brief: the team at OCC picks a short list of names of real people buried in the cemetery; then they pass that list on to a handful of writers, who select the names that interest them; the writers receive what little (or lot!) of research the cemetery has on the person, and write either 5-6 minute monologues or scenes; the monologues and scenes are performed in October on the grounds of the cemetery in the annual OCC tours.

Last year, I wrote a piece for Luther Brice, a young Black man who was killed in a boiler explosion while serving a 60-day sentence at the City Farm, which was essentially a prison labor farm. He'd been arrested on a "charge of disorder," his mother had potentially been a laundress, and that was about all that was known about him…

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