Monday, 15 October 2012

On the subject of subtle plugs

A momentous event happened yesterday. Grisel and I actually had some time off at the same time, and we had what can only be described as a wonderful afternoon together. It was a beautiful autumnal day so we walked through St James Park and fed the ducks. Well I say fed the ducks the seagulls insisted on muscling in. I never knew they could be so aggressive.  At one point they actually managed to dive and catch the bread in the air and this actually impressed us. We then decided to throw the bread up to get them to do it again... bad move. A flock of shrieking seagulls now hovered around us and this gave me a definite 'Hitchcock's The Birds' moment. Even this, however, was fun. After that it was on to an art exhibition, another walk in the amazing late afternoon light by our beloved Thames, and then a fantastic music concert at The South Bank. All in all, perfect, and we both felt a deep sense of contentment... and this is the problem now. With all this joy and contentment, what the hell do I write about in my blog today?

I'll come clean, this blog really isn't about the trials and tribulations of running a fledgeling theatre company as the title suggests. It's more about looking at my own personal neurosis in, hopefully, a humourous way, and I can now feel another one kicking in... right on cue. What if  my life is now so good I'll never have anything to write about again? Of course that's not true, I've got plenty to write about, in fact too much, and some of my projects are suffering from neglect. There you go, the bubble's burst. Back down to earth with a bump. There is something scary about writing, even in this humble blog. It's intensely personal, I mean, the writer is the raw material for his/her product. I wonder if the manufacturers of soap powder identify so personally with what they are selling... I doubt it... maybe they do. Maybe the CEO of Unilever has a deep desire to cleanse his tortured soul by selling Daz.  I don't know, but I do know that the things that are closest to me, are the most difficult and scary to write, and it's those projects I put off until  two days before the deadline. Of course I'm still eagerly awaiting my next writers pay check so I guess the problem for me is to keep churning it out until someone gives me money for it. I spoke to a professional article writer a few months back who actually does make a good living. She too spoke about the stress of meeting deadlines but it seemed that, for her, it was actually worst. I felt a bit sad because the joy seemed to have gone out of it all. I think this is a shame although, having said that, if any TV/radio/stage producers out there want to help take some of the joy out of my writing please feel free to get in touch. Oh dear, is this blog turning into a pit of a plug?

Speaking of things that are scary and exciting at the same time, our cabaret club The Royal National Theatre of Fools is coming along great. (Just continuing the theme of subtle plugs there.) We have a great line up for the opening night on December the 4th so please all come along if you can. I think I'll try and get an equally bad link to a plug in all of my blogs from now on. Could be a great running gag.

Anyway our perfect day yesterday ended in a wonderfully middle aged way with watching the Strictly Come Dancing results show on the ipad whilst snuggling up in bed. I'm a big fan of that too so expect an article about sequins and celebs in the future This blog is nothing if not varied.

When he's not stressing over his own self imposed writing deadlines Mike Raffone is the co founder of the production company howhow along with his fiancĂ© Grisel Tarifa. They are opening a new performance club The Royal National Theatre of Fools at clf Art Cafe, Peckham on December 4th.  It will be dedicated to the clown, the absurd and the eccentric. His latest radio script is called Instant Karma. It follows the fortunes of Susanna Lewis Parr, a meditation healer with anger issues. For more info go to www.howhow.co.uk

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