Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Take Me Back to Manhattan


It's official - I'm in NY for good. Or for bad, depending on what kind of trouble I get into.

Like the immigrant who’s come to NY to find work in the rag trade, then sends for his wife in the babushka back in the shtetl, I’ve preceded Floyd here. He’ll remain in Portland until our house sells, possibly staying longer depending on his work situation. When people at parties ask where I am, he likes to tell them we broke up, though he doesn’t do it as much because it made a friend of ours burst into tears.

“If you two can’t make it, there’s no hope for love,” he cried.

So we stay together for the sake of the friends.

At my suggestion, Floyd and I celebrated my last weekend in Portland (and the first sunny one all year) by taking a ride in farm country and deliberately getting lost. I was nervous the trip would be a bust, a metaphor for the foolhardy adventure upon which we've embarked. But we ended up at a buffalo ranch, where we saw beasts that look like something George Lucas dreamed up.

Then we ate them.

FYI: buffalo jerky - not a thing.

The move is bittersweet. Floyd and I escaped NY a lifetime ago, broken people in a city ravaged by AIDS. We had a westward adventure, stopping in Colorado before settling in Portland, a nurturing bastion of weirdness, a safe place, somewhere we could heal and grow. With 200 days of rain a year, you can grow a lot.

So I finally feel like I know what I want to do with my life: write musicals. Going from being a writer of books to a book writer combines everything I’m good at – story structure, dialogue, comedy, collaboration, music and dealing with pressure.

Here's what I'm working on.

For those of you who are fans of How I Paid for College and Attack of the Theater People, please know that despite the third installment in the Theater People book being orphaned at the aptly named Random House, I will make certain it sees the light of day.

In the meanwhile, I'm teaching novel writing and story structure at NYU (starting online May 23rd, then in person this fall) and am coaching and editing aspiring writers privately.

As soon as I'm done unpacking, I'll get back to blogging regularly about things theatrical, rather than blathering about myself. But I figured I better bring you all up to date first.

3 comments:

Colin Matthew (TheBookPirate.com) said...

Yay! More Theater People!

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Christina Katz said...

Hey Marc,
Jason and I will miss you. What if we run out of theater people in the greater Portland area? If that happens you will just have to come back. But in the meantime, congrats on teaching at NYU. I remember how great you were at the Northwest Author Series our first season. And I thought to myself, "Dang, that guy should be teaching." You will be missed!