June 7th, 2005


Bits and Pieces

It's funny, what mjperson and I worry about in Oath, versus what actually proves to be a problem. Half of the things that we worry about breaking go perfectly well, and half of the problems we encounter come (as far as we can tell) out of left field. Though I suppose that just goes to demonstrate that we aren't omniscient. :)

Take the Summer Reveries, which were all basically dream sequences of one sort or another. I spent a long time worrying how to tell players how to play a dream sequence, what sorts of things were okay to Just Make Up (in a way that you can't really just make up random things about the other characters, in a real run). But all my attempted explanations were very klunky-sounding and pedantic and still didn't really capture the right flavor. In the end, we didn't tell them anything other than the setup for the situation they were in, and everyone pretty much immediately understood the appropriate amount of improvisation without coaching. All in all, I'm very happy with the reveries, though for the most part they don't make very good logs, as they're nearly all just talking.

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Desire under the Elms at the ART last Sunday (and we investigated Henrietta's Table for dinner before). This wasn't one of the more enjoyable shows there for me (still 100% for lying/rolling on the floor). Ephraim was the strongest, and I thought the only one who really made the dialect seem natural. It's all staged "outside" with rocks and the sort of furniture you can drag around outside; that was very bleak but compelling - though I couldn't really believe in it as a farm, since nothing at all grew. There was no backstage, so characters would head up the hill and stand there when they weren't in a scene; I found this very jarring in some cases, like when Ephraim goes off to sleep by the barn, stands facing the back wall, and then comes back announcing that he has had a very good night's sleep.
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Oops, I forgot to write down the Three Post Card Lines. Will do that tonight.
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