The second day of the one-on-one workshop was tough. Tough for both myself and for my writer. It again leaves me wondering if I should or want to be doing this, again I think, I am not a therapist and I don’t want to be a therapist. Not that there was therapeutic digging but after a series of questions we hit a trigger and my writer was upset. My impulse was to change the subject or be comforting but it was awkward because we don’t know each other, plus this is the “good” stuff so to speak the stuff that goes on the page. There is something a little insensitive and sadistic about it. I know what this is all about and I know my writer does too, but it still feels uncomfortable.
I think back to my own writing and how many times I have sobbed over a paper or broke into tears after reading a particularly powerful paragraph, that may or may not be recounting actual events, but I know the truth of where the emotion comes from. It comes from my life. Same with my writer, her character’s emotions will be coming from a place that is real. From the truth of her life.
But, sometimes I wonder… do we really have to do this? Is it really good art to have to connect to it? Can the audience tell if a piece is disconnected or connected?
I know I am having a difficult time with this because I feel a disconnect within my own life, and work. Sometimes I feel that being disconnected is not such a bad thing, and getting in touch with your hurt is a load of crap. The idea of being numb and distant seems attractive to me. This desire to be seen to be known, what’s the point?
But, I can’t guide my writer through her piece and successfully get those emotions that were flying wild into writable actions if I am not right there with her and connected and paying attention to the feelings in my own life.
I wonder if this will be one of those situations where I see the production and every moment of discomfort and tears will be worth it. Shakespeare was right wasn’t he, about the world a stage and us merely players?