Sunday, March 27, 2011

elephants want to belong too

Last night while leaving a local bar with a friend I found a flier for a play that's coming to Pittsburgh in two weeks:


 According to the description on the back, the play is about a man with a severe deformity and how he is protected by Victorian doctors and eventually accepted by Victorian society as more than a "freak of nature."  A more detailed description can be found on The Ninth Wave's website:
The Elephant Man tells the story of Joseph Merrick, a grossly deformed English man who was taken in by the Royal London Hospital from 1884 to his death in 1890. Dr. Frederick Treves, a young surgeon at the Hospital first saw Merrick as he was being exhibited as part of a side-show near the hospital. He examined Merrick and persuaded the Hospital to allow him to stay on, despite the fact that his disorder was deemed incurable. In this way, Merrick not only was given his first real "home", but was also introduced to and ultimately embraced by English society. The play, by Bernard Pomerance, portrays Merrick's life while in the protective cocoon of the Hospital, and examines how he affected all who knew him.
It performs at The Mutter Museum of The College of Physicians of Philadelphia, PA, on Monday, April 11.  But there will be two series of showings at the Pittsburgh Playwrights Theatre on April 1-3 and April 7-9.  I'll see if I can make the latter dates. 

I am feeling in a kickass writing mood today.  Not so much blog-wise, but fiction-wise.  I need to seriously get back on my Victorian historical fiction novel.

As a tribute to the art of writing, I give writers this piece of advice that my twin sister Leigh reminded me of today:
"Substitute "damn" every time you're inclined to write "very;" your editor will delete it and the writing will be just as it should be." ~Mark Twain
In my high school AP English class our instructor, Ms,. Boyle, drilled this piece of advice into our heads.  It is excellent advice.  All unnecessary words such as "very" should be removed from your writing because it doesn't add any special meaning to your writing that isn't already there.

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