Thursday, December 17, 2009


Juliet began as a character in a novel-in-progress, Let Her Cry, and then appeared in OGW 10/22/09.  Juliet is working on a “one-girl show”, hoping to become a performer like her mother.  Unfortunately, Juliet’s mother is bipolar, which often takes too much of Juliet’s time and energy, and leaves her with little left to work on herself.


Juliet:  Story of My Life

(a “one-girl” show)
starring Juliet McCarthy as herself

(One small dot of light expands… expands, expands, becoming a halo, illuminating Juliet’s face, becoming a spotlight of her whole body.  She is crouched on the floor, holding the microphone in one hand, tapping a cigarette with the other.  A black and white movie reel plays in the backround:  loud sounds of reels spinning, the movie is crackly -- family scenes, like a montage of old family movies

Wait.  Too campy.  Not authentic enough.  Change to: (Natural lighting dims.  Juliet is crouched on the floor, tapping a cigarette with one hand, tapping keys on a laptop computer with the other.  She is illuminated by the light from her computer screen.  The microphone rests on the floor by her feet.  Her toes, barefeet, scrunch.
Slides click into place behind Juliet -- family scenes -- click, click, then faster and faster, clickity clickity click, in time with Juliet tapping out words on her computer.  She reads:)

After the big fight over Hootie.  Mom in fishnet tights and a big tee shirt with Dad’s Irish-green down vest over it for warmth.  He’s so happy when she kisses him.
            I’m happy too.  No, really.  Mom’s eyes look like clichés – sad clown or raccoon eyes, streaked make-up.  From the fight.  But it’s over now, they’re happy, and I’m happy.
            Really.  (Looks up at the audience.)
            But you don’t believe me.
            After the big fight, Mom with raccoon eyes kisses Dad and he runs his hands over her down vest.  They retreat to the bedroom, and Dad leaves his drink.  Scotch Rocks.
            I’m so happy for them, and the fact that they don’t see me anymore.  I’m so happy for me -- and the fact that I don’t see me anymore.
            (Juliet looks down at her computer and types as she reads:)  I don’t believe in me.

            I drink the scotch. (Mimes drinking a glassful in one gulp.)

            Tap my cigarette.  Suck hard.  Crouched over laptop on the floor of my room, Achilles tendons stretching, knees popping.  Writing.

            This is my story.

(The last slide clicks into place – it is Juliet, posed as she was a moment ago -- as she was in her bedroom that night.  She rises, and faces the screen and the slide, reaching out to touch her own image.)

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