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Mrs Thought bubble

This is a surreal piece  I wrote during a surreal time.

It’s about the cruelty of life and how the elderly are treated in Britain. It was inspired by the time I spent with my grandmother in her care home when she had Dementia and Alzheimers.

It’s a stream of consciousness  Short Borderline script.

 

 MRS BRUISED:  “I’m tired”

                                 “I’m tired”

 CARD SHUFFLER: (throws his voice from a table on the left)

                                      “I’m tired too.”

MRS BRUISED:          (sits upright)

                                         “I’m tired”

CARD SHUFFLER:     “Aye? Go to sleep then.”

 (The room fans out into a full house of insidious laughter)

MISS CARDIGAN:   excuse me, Dear, can you tell me where the toilets  

                                    I’ve only just  popped by/

THE WEED: ( Looks around for a sign indicating the Mangers office)

                                         Of course, just follow me.

(THE WEED walks back from the toilets  and goes to crouch down to hold MRS THOUGHT BUBBLES  hand).

THE WEED:             She’s pissed herself. Can someone change her?

THE ROSE:             No, she hasn’t.

GINGER:                (enters) Here you go. Open your mouth?

(GINGER shovels a hefty spoonful of what looks like boiled bagged food) 

THE WEED: (aside) Lost in thought……The smell of piss can’t be worse than death’s kiss…

GINGER:               Here- wah-la!  open your mouth.

  Mrs Thought Bubble’s inner thoughts

 

THE WEED:           Tu es Pleine?

(aside)                 Like an old coffin opening for the first time in a          century;

 MRS THOUGHT BUBBLE:   Pleine.

THE ROSE:               You   are thirsty today.

( Comes back from the kitchen with another full beaker of  red diluted kids juice)

                                     So so thirsty.

THE WEED: (aside) Three empty beakers all lined up in a row – My eyes rest and are ready to aim – trigger happy and ready to blow.

 

                               She has pissed herself, look!

THE ROSE:          Oh you have made a pee-pee Mamie- a pee-pee!

 REGRESSION SOUNDS

 

(chorus) A Nod. A skeleton- face grins

Bright light beams from  Mrs Thought Bubbles eyes.

An Image.

A carved pumpkin with a toothy grin.

Burning away in a dark room within.

More strained laughter churns out lactic acid.

MRS BRUISED : (on a loop)

                              Oh, I am tired. 

BRUNETTE:      Fiddler!  Stop putting your hands down your pants.

THE WEED:     Maybe that is the only way she gets to feel something.

(Legs splayed-  FIDDLER’S fingers explores her vagina hungrily)

MRS BRUISED:       I’m tired.

CARD SHUFFLER:  Yeah me too! Shut up.

(Eyes veer to the table on the left).

 

THE WEED:  Dying flowers  in a glass vase.

                   If I had to throw it would reality become what I once knew it to be?

Jeer me on why don’t you? 

Throw the fucking vase.

Throw it!

How long have those silver wrapped chocolates been  stood there. This is not some fancy New York hotel. 

If they are going to start leaving chocolates make sure you get Hershey’s kisses.

Brown as the shit under neath Mrs Thought bubble’s  nails.

 

THE WEED:  She has pissed herself!

GINGER:      I will go get dessert.

THE WEED: (aside) Does it come in different sex positions? 

                                     Sweet Silence.

                                  One of the toughest spells to break.

                                  No one dares look at the other.

                                Carers go  a drift.

                                Congregate to conflate into  gossip office politics.

THE ROSE:            Go and tell them to change her.

(THE WEED creeps along the  floor until it has found the right door).

THE WEED:               Can someone change Mrs Thought bubble!  She is in her own piss.

MRS HEGEMONY:  Wheres nondescript and the other one too?

Great big sighs. A room full of eyes wondering if the pay they get is worth the time.

The time finally has a stroke and then another and another.

The hoist in all its bluesy hues comes for Mrs Thought-bubble.

 

GINGER:               I’m sorry I got called into the office.

THE WEED:       Look it’s not you. Its just… I am sitting watching Mrs                                           Thought bubble over here, shout out….  and                                                            “she is wading in her own  piss!

THE ROSE:           Let’s go outside

THE ROSE: ( turns to BRUNETTE)

                             Can we take her outside?

BRUNETTE: ( a voice rolls out  like a plush  red carpet)

                         Of course.

 ( BRUNETTE rolls out the wheelchair –)

CHORUS: She hasn’t been outside in over a year.

                    She shouts and protests.

                   Vintage sunglasses are placed on her  to  help process her eyes.

                  Flowers.Bees.Sunshine.Colours.

(More shouts and protests).

MAINTENANCE:  Do you want me to take a picture?

(THE WEED and THE ROSE in unison) Oh yes please.

(Chorus) CLICK !

                  CLICK!

                     Mature cheddar smiles captured against the vines.

THE WEED:  I love you Mrs Thought-bubble.

(Muffled sounds.)

                         I’ll settle for that as an good enough au revoir.

                         Four doors.

                          Four Windows.

                          Four wheels.

                         Taxi takes us very fucking far away from here, please.

THE WEED: (to THE ROSE)     Did you notice that nobody came to clean the chair?

THE ROSE:      Don’t tell me this.

                       Every night I cry myself to sleep 

                          If we move her again she will die.                           

                         Please let her die.

                           Why? 

                            Why?

                             It is beyond my understanding.

Petals start to turn inwards – it’s a crying shame to see rose a  start to wilt.

RED CAP:       There was a sticker attached saying ‘TO CLEAN’

THE WEED:    Oh.

                        I’m sorry.

                         I love you, Rose.

                         I can’t imagine what you are going through.

THE ROSE: (Wilts that tiny bit more)

                         She doesn’t even know who I am anymore.

THE WEED:   I know who you are.

                         You know who I  am.

THE WEED: (aside)

It doesn’t matter if the sun is shining- water will always ignore the air around it. If it wants to pour so it shall.

Tears pour.

Tears break.

 The weed reaches and creeps until it has a secure grip  around The Roses stem.

Hands entwined.

The Weed .

The Rose.

Both look out their own private window.

                            Bee would have loved to see that cow…..

THE ROSE:     ( watered and ready to pose)

                         So tomorrow is a busy day. We have to sort out the cake

THE WEED:   The cake?

THE ROSE:       …the wedding cake?   And We need to find Mr Thought bubble an outfit  for the wedding.

THE WEED:    Is she actually allowed to come?

THE ROSE:        Madam  Hegemony, says it is fine.

THE WEED:    (flat)Oh, Cool. I wonder did we tell the cake makers that we changed the theme from sunflowers to yellow roses?

THE ROSE:     Yes! We are just having yellow icing on normal    flowers..

 THE WEED:     Oh… like the colour on our invitations? 

(Stationary).

THE ROSE:      See you tomorrow.

THE WEED: Mint, Yes.. tomorrow… (as an after thought)

THE ROSE:   10:30, Don’t be late.  We are getting threaded first.

                        Have you got the Bee’s shoes?

THE WEED:  Yes Mam.

THE ROSE:    I swear if you had loads of money in this town you still                                           wouldn’t be able to spend it.

                        It’s all bullshit

(from) THE HORSES MOUTH:

                    And so the earth continues to travel around the sun.

                    The sun goes down.

                  The moon is full-faced and all fluttering eyelashes.

                  And  I still have a long face.

                 Nothing but everything changes.

Nay,

Neigh!

Horses don’t talk.

Neither do flowers

Horse manure.

Bullshit.

Jut another day in ‘I wonder what the fuck  next land?

Just an average day in an average Care home.

 

Image Francecsa Woodman 

 

 

The waiting & writing game

 I’ve had a few ( of you )  Bloggers ask me to keep you updated with how my MA is going in Creative Writing.

 One TMA (tutor marked assignment) emailed and submitted to  the Open University .

Now I await the results.18-I-hate-waiting-quote.jpg

 

I ended up doing 10 re-drafts!

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My commentary had to focus on the creation process.

This is what I had to say – 500 words – this was the maximum word count  we were allowed  to write on 8 weeks of study, writing and personal research.

I won’t post the entire first 20 pages of my script ‘URBAN JUNGLE’

I will put down what I wrote in my commentary.

TMA 1- COMMENTARY – THE CREATIVE PROCESS

 

My passion in script writing lies in writing about themes, which affect society-politically. I want to raise awareness of this theme retaining social realism without it becoming an Agit -prop piece. I used more naturalistic theatre devices to engage an audience by appealing to emotions.

An audience needs to feel empathy. I expanded the piece into a love story, with the centralized characters having obstacles and goals that were not solely restricted by their homeless situation, but because of their own personality traits and motives. An example is Desire is naturally a caring and ambitious person. Leo is charming, has addiction issues and is more of an idealist.

Aspects of dramatic methods, which appeal to me, is the visual narration of the play. I use Brecht-like devices such as projectors, audio, light to govern the mood and reveal the story. I used episodic scenes to illustrate Desires flashbacks to when she lived at home. This doubles as an exposition tool to reveal backstory and create a sense of the inner and emotional conflict Desire is going through –personally and within the larger themes of the play.

I deliberately did not use many stage directions because I visualise this piece performed in an immersive theatre environment.

When I have performed in plays in this format as actor – the blocking scenes are the directors and actors job.

Tools that have helped me develop this script has been using a writer’s journal. The conception for this play came about when I was walking my local town, I walked past someone who looked homeless, was begging and he was texting on his mobile phone. My initial judgement was ‘how can a homeless person afford a mobile phone?’

This led me to reflect on my judgments and explore the true homeless crisis issue in our society.

Other obstacles I found challenging was plotting scenes. I use the flash back device, which resulted in the opening scene. I took the approach of David Mamet ‘get in the scene late, get out early’ (Neale D, A creative writing handbook-developing dramatic technique, individual style and voice pg. 87). I am receptive to advice given by Forum members about the plausibility of characters illnesses and researched this (please see bibliography) and amended character details in the Cast list. My characters and their lives required thorough research and aided me in realizing my characters.

I researched extensively on homeless teens, young carers, Herbie, and Marjorie’s disabilities (please refer to Bibliography, secondary resources)

This is a continuing piece, which I intend to develop further for my EMA. I decided an effective way to end the TMA was by adding an obligatory scene-usually used at the end of a play. (Polsky M., You can write a play, pg. 83)  The mini obligatory scene in the library to end scene two, is a contrast in the environment and to the centralised characters situation. I found using the Librarian role character an effective way to create a dramatic clock, to conclude the end of the scene.

WORD COUNT 506

By Natasha Sonia Bodley   ( Holliday)

10 days until I get my results.

 

giphy-1 

WRITERS REMEDY TO EVERYTHING!

 

 

Onto the next block – Part one of this TMA is to write a short fiction piece of 2000 words

Anybody know if Flash fiction can be 2ooo words ?

Does anyone have any ideas on a style of short story fiction I can concentrate on?

Has to be 2000 words (give or take 10%   more or less.)

Mini LIFE UPPDATE :  NEW TATTOOS

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 Catch up soon!

❤ ❤ ❤

Homelessness script update

I feel like all I do these days is write, read books about writing- and as much as I love to write and learn how to write better, I need another hobby.

I used to blog daily -sometimes twice a day.

Nope – not anymore.

I don’t get to read as many of your blogs as I want. 😦

Since I’ve started my Masters- all I do is write and read.  oh, and then there is the rest of my life to deal with.

I don’t mind, but I am one of these generally over anxious type of people who will freak out about everything until I’ve submitted my work, and then I will find something else to worry about.

Am I the only person who feels this way?

Where am I up to in my Masters?

25 days away from submitting my first TMA (tutor marked assignment) to the Open university.

It’s part of an ongoing piece of work I intend to do when I do my EMA (end-of-module assessment)

What am I doing?

I’m passionate about people, life, my community.

I’ve been doing loads of research on homelessness- particularly teenagers who are homeless in the U.K.

Mind blowing, the local authorities make life a nightmare for these children to get into ‘normal society living’.

The premise of my script is ultimately a good old fashioned love story with plenty of obstacles – the end hasn’t been written yet but there is where I am up to:

Desire is a 14/16 -year-old runaway, she was a full-time, undeclared carer for her parents – her Mum who   has Dyspraxia and her Dad who has Dementia. She struggles with the guilt of leaving her ill parents to look after themselves yet she wants to find her own path in life and be successful – have  a career, relationships, family- all normal milestones. 

She falls in love with the charismatic,  highly talented and artistic, drug addicted – Leo. They are polar opposites. She is not into the whole drug scene and engages with hostels and programs to try and get off the streets. Leo loves Desire because she is everything he is not. He wants the best for her but he is not really a planner. Lives day to day. His mother  had Cancer,and she took an overdose, Leo found her and he has been on the streets for many years. To get by he sometimes is able to get  commissioned work for his  artwork . The drugs get in the way of him being able to maintain a job.

He enjoys the Freedom of living on the streets and he sees it as his home. He knows the system well, he knows how to play it so he doesn’t fall into it. 

Vee, a hostel coordinator at Steps hostel and day care center for homeless teens, sees the potential in Desire and tries to pull as many strings to help Desire get off the streets. Her biggest obstacle seems to be her  need to care for Leo and her love for him.

Desire has a chance to get into a new program, funded by an organisation, to  help 25 young teenage women get their life sorted but she ends up falling pregnant with Leo’s baby at the same time   she finds out her Mom dies of a stroke and her Dad-  unable to keep up with the rent payments on the house, is taking into a state care home. 

Her  mental health starts to unravel quickly. She disappears for a couple of months and then goes back to find Leo  to confront Leo with the news of her parents and to tell him she is pregnant. Leo already suspects Desire is pregnant. Desire finds Leo’s in his  favorite place to get high and chill – he loves reading- the library.

Desire’s dreams of being with Leo start to fall apart when he has to convince her to go into a hostel -full time and to focus on her and the baby. 

Desire is reluctant- as there are so many ways her being pregnant could play out. She could get transferred to a single teenagers hostel. 

In my research, I have found out that unlike teenage hostels- where the rules are rather flexible a lot of young single Moms are cut off from their partners (who often happen to be homeless or on drugs ) and living a chaotic lifestyle.

There is also the worry of social services getting involved. 

What will happen?

I’m yet to write that bit. ha ha! I have an idea – a rough idea. I know the ending already although this may change when it comes to drafting the next part of this script.

The main obstacles Desire will come up against is being able to adapt to living in a more structured environment, in a place where she knows no one,lives with many different girls in various different mind states and in different places contrasting to Desire.

Can Desire forget Leo?

How does Leo deal with not being able to support Desire, in a way, a father -to -wants to?

How does the system support young ,homeless parent- or parents to be ?

How does this story end  for Desire and Leo?

Many people think homeless people choose to live on the streets without knowing the red tape nightmare , internal conflict,external life issues and stress that these people have to deal with on a day to day basis.

I didn’t want this to be an agitprop / political piece.  I have always written stories and scripts about themes that do  come up in politics.

My main obstacle was to create awareness of the complications and obstacles homeless people face but I needed to do this in a way that an audience would engage with , relate to and come from a place of empathy.

Who hasn’t been in love?

Who hasn’t had to make tough choices?

homeless-love-this-Favim.com-349806.jpg

Life is not black and white. There are many gray shades and people are complicated. We are not a piece of paper with a checklist of criteria who fit into a neat box.

Approaching the current homelessness crisis from this angle is not working!

I’m currently tweaking the visual narrative, dialogue everything!

 I’m still undecided whether it should be environmental theater,  site-specific location or  low-level audience participation interaction in the style of promenade theater. I do know that I envision the play to be staged to the bare minimum.  I agree  with Moliere and many other playwrights ‘less is more’  when it comes to scene setting. Audiences left with their own imagination can come up with a far better setting or set than I can.

deadline submission date: 25 November.

I still  need to write a commentary to discuss the creation-evolution process and any obstacles I came across and how I worked it all out.  😀