Monday, 9 May 2011

Close of Play

Well, that's it, then. My play has now finished. I'm at that depressing going-back-to-normal-life stage, and I can't bring myself to do anything. Not even laundry, and believe me, I really need to do some, or I will actually disappear beneath the surface of a swamp of dirty T-shirts and drown.

It's such a long time since I've done a play that I'd almost forgotten what it was like. Finishing a film just doesn't have the same impact - mainly because doing films isn't much fun anyway. No, a play is different. It's - well, it's like a love affair. The adrenalin, the fear, the uncertainty, the delight... The rehearsals as you appraise and wonder and flirt, the tech as you think this was all a huge mistake, and then the performances when it all falls into place and you've found the purpose, the love of your life. And then the party, and the euphoria and fatigue, and then that moment when you go round saying goodbye to people and you realise it's raining outside and it's half past three in the morning and you're walking home alone.

And this has really nothing to do with actually falling in love with someone in the play. (Sometimes that happens too, but let's not go into that.)

But there you go. I feel like I've just been dumped. No, not dumped. I feel like we've decided, with mutual sadness, that it's not going to happen and we should stop now before someone gets hurt. Not the end of the world, but... what do I do now?

Well, we'll see. Today I was looking over profiles from for a competition I'm judging - that was nice, not too demanding but I had to concentrate - and it won't be till tomorrow that I'll have to do some real work.

Or possibly I'll buy some ice cream and eat it in my pyjamas, sitting on the sofa.

I'll keep you informed.

Tuesday, 3 May 2011

Writing? Oh, yes, I used to do that.

I am suddenly, strangely, busy.

This is very unusual for me. Normally I've got a daily routine of writing, going to the gym, cooking, watching films, going to bed... The writing gets done because it's the only thing I really think about.

But in the last few weeks I've actually been doing things. Like, I'm in a production of a play (What The Butler Saw, at Trinity Theatre in Tunbridge Wells) which goes up tonight, so I've been rehearsing for that. And I've been to Wales - did I mention Wales? A week in a lovely little cottage near Fishguard, walking, reading... oh, and we had one of the best meals I've ever had.

(Skip this paragraph if you're not interested in the details of said meal: I had scallops with pancetta and lemon and laverbread butter to start, then venison with a fruity, chocolatey sauce and unlimited vegetables (including but not limited to red cabbage, mashed turnip and a wonderful garlicky potato gratin) and then I had a lemon and apple parfait with Calvados. I left the restaurant about a stone heavier than I went in, and I didn't even care.)

Anyway. Came back from Wales to rehearse, and went on rehearsing while some American friends stayed, and then Marc (my lovely Frenchman) stayed, and then there was the Royal Wedding which of course I wat-- no, wait, that was the day of the snooker semi-final, right? Well, I watched some of it, between frames... And while Marc was here we worked on my CV, as I have a kind of plan to move to Paris, and it would be great to find an actual, proper job there. That felt very (bizarrely) professional - it's so long since I had to do any of that stuff. Incidentally, did you know that French people put photos on their CVs? Even when they're not actors or models? I found that a little bit strange...

And then Marc left again and I went on rehearsing and now it's production week. And this morning I spent doing emails and judging a book-profiling competition (of which more later, in the next instalment).

So, have you noticed the deliberate omission? Yep. This means it's months since I did any writing.

But after the play there will be a long sad desert of not doing anything. And then I will get back to work. Promise.