Our best laid plans for a monthly Family Poetry Night hit a snag around the end of the year. Sadly, despite the fact that I sent out the assignment last month (after months of asking for the person who originated the idea to come up with some guidelines – but I’m not bitter), we were unable to reconvene due to scheduling conflicts until this week. Happily, we’ve expanded poetry to other forms of writing and we seem to be back on track.
This month, per Stephen’s suggestion, we each wrote a dialogue. I sent out links to Plato’s famous dialogues and to the video of Abbott and Costello’s Who’s On First. I asked that each participant write a dialogue for at least two people of at least 2 pages long, with enough direction that someone else would be able to read it and give it meaning. The girls of the family came through with flying colors in making small but meaningful -- to us at least -- dialogues about daily life. The boy, an erstwhile English major, was an enthusiastic reader, but did not write, while the originator of the idea wrote six, idea-packed pages wrapped around a calm and courageous hero.
Let’s just say, Katy, Victoria, and I wrote dialogues that were performed collectively within nine minutes. Stephen’s dialogue took 16 minutes all by itself. But it was pretty darn good in a Scarlet Pimpernel meets Sparrowhawk kind of way.
Here are the names and descriptions of the dialogues as presented (I think that titling a piece of writing is near half the fun of the project. Apparently, my daughters do not share my enthusiasm in that.):
Family Night Dialogue: Joe’s frustration with his little brother comes back to bite him.
Dialogue – Family Style: A conversation between co-workers.
The Importance of Knowing When to Be Earnest: A chance meeting at a hardware store.
A Match for Hastings: The compelling conversation of a condemned man and his executioner.
We are now taking suggestions for June Family Writing Night.