Yesterday I finished the first draft of a short play I’ve been pondering for a while. Here’s a peek:
Sarah lives near a dangerous coal waste facility. For years she’s had to watch people she loves get sick and die. Now she’s finally found a way to leave: the coal company is going to buy her out. But on the day she plans to sign the papers and flee with her son, a visitor arrives at her door with news that could change everything.
If you’ve followed this site for a while, you might recognize this play as being inspired by a previous article I wrote about a little town in PA called LaBelle. Researching that piece was incredibly moving for me, and I wanted to show this modern-day displacement issue for what it is.
It was fun to write something short, even though there’s editing to be done. There are a few important moments in the play that feel too fluffy right now. But I think it will come together quickly. Especially after working on a feature length screenplay, it’s nice to move on to something I could write in two sittings.
I’m also learning the value of being married to a trained actor. My husband has given me solid advice on how to write something actors will want to sink their teeth into.
To learn more about the controversy inspiring this piece, read my previous articles on what is happening to many communities located near coal ash (also known as “fly ash”) waste facilities: