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Thursday, 28 February 2008

Karma!

Ooo, rehearsals went so well yesterday. It's great hearing and seeing the script come to life. I'm slightly stuck on the twist, I just need to work one thing out and as soon as I do I know the rest of it will come tumbling out!

Erm, I was having a conversation in work today about smelly people sitting next to you on buses. I told my friend that sometimes I put my bag on the other seat so that I don't have to sit next to a stranger - OK, I know it's a bad thing to do and I do move it if it gets busier, but if just a few people get on and there's lots of space, then I put my bag down. 'That's terrible,' my friend said.
'I just can't bear being trapped in by a smelly person.'
So on the bus tonight I decided to listen to my friend and put my bag on my knee.
What do you think happened?
Imagine the most smelliest person in the entire world - times the smell by a million and that's what I was sat next to. I say sat, I was squashed up against the window, trying to smell the fresh air through a tiny window.
I had my ipod switched on and couldn't hear anything coming from his mouth, I was busy trying to breathe.
After a good twenty minutes, which actually felt like twenty years, a seat became free. I switched my ipod off, got him to get up and I sat on the free seat, opening the nearest window.
Just before I switched my ipod back on, I heard him burping, he burped... lots... loudly.
God, I was sat next to a smelly BURPING man! UGH!

Once I got home I scrubbed myself with antibacterial soap and got changed.

Yes I now believe in Karma!

Wednesday, 27 February 2008

Stuff...

I haven't blogged in a few days, as I've just been a bit busy.
Rehearsals for the play the other night were a bit of a disaster, three members of the cast couldn't make it. Two were ill and one had some family things to do. One member of the company got lost in the building and as she doesn't have a mobile, we didn't find her until we were in the car park getting ready to leave!
I've managed to book the Taurus bar for today, instead of dragging everyone to Salford. It means we can also rehearse earlier - so hopefully I'll have a full cast at 4pm today.
The cast members that did manage to make rehearsals liked the twist in the play when I explained it to them, and hopefully the rest will like it when I tell them later.

Posters have been delivered to the theatre and I'm busy promoting it as much as I possibly can.
Hopefully I'll make enough money on this, so I can put it in to the next one and just build until I'm at a stage where I can pay actors... that's the dream anyway!

Erm, other news - well I had my weigh in at Boots yesterday. I HAVE PUT ON WEIGHT!!? I must be the only person in the entire world that can go on a diet and put on weight! I've totally had enough. Mr Sally is sick of me looking Weight Watchers food in Tesco's - I'm sick of it too.
So I'm just going to eat healthy, eat what I want and EXERCISE more!
I swear the only snacks I had last week were - one biscuit when I met the lovely author Phillipa Ashley for a cup of tea on Friday morning.
I had a couple of biscuits on the weekend and fine, I snapped on Monday and had a small chocolate muffin, handful of Pringle's and two jammy dodgers - but I HAVE DONE MY BEST!!!

Also, how expensive is printer ink? My goodness, it seems to be the one thing in the world that never comes down in price. I've just had to buy a black cartridge and a colour one - I could have bought a whole new printer cheaper - it doesn't make sense??!!

Sunday, 24 February 2008

Nooo!

I can't believe the weekend is almost over. It's just flown by. I've been working solidly on my play writing and promoting all weekend. I've just printed the latest scenes for tomorrow's rehearsal, fingers crossed the cast like it.
I've just figured out a way to link the character, so I'm feeling very excited.

I've decided to log-off early tonight though, I should spend some time with Mr Sally. So after tea, we're going to drink beer and watch Simpsons the movie, I bought it him for Crimbo and we haven't watched it yet.

Hope everyone has had a good weekend!

Saturday, 23 February 2008

Knock-Knock...


That was my door last night at 10:30pm. My next door neighbour was stood there, 'Sorry to knock so late, I've got a parcel for you. I meant to bring it earlier, but ended up going out.'
Her husband handend me the heavy cardboard box.
'Oh, thank you - thank you!' I beamed.

I was about to tell them it was the posters for my play, but they didn't hang around and said goodbyes and went inside.

I ripped open the box, I was so excited. The posters are beautiful... OK, so I'm getting carried away with myself here. But I love them. Even more so because I designed them. I don't mind admitting I shed a little tear.

'Why?' Asked Mr Sally, 'It's not like this is the first play you've ever done.'

That's true, but for some reason, holding the flyer for my play - makes it all seem real. And just for that moment I felt really proud of myself, just for that moment. And I won't feel that again until opening night, when the cast take their first bow - because from now until then is a none-stop rollercoaster ride!

Friday, 22 February 2008

Where For Bloomin Art Thou???

My lovely shiny new posters and flyers should have arrived today. There's no slip to say they tried to deliver them...

Where are they???

Fingers crossed they come tomorrow!

Thursday, 21 February 2008

Language and Snacks!

Last night I went to my second playwritng class at the theatre and I loved every second of it. We talked a lot about language. We covered language that's natural and that's stylised. We even in groups wrote a stylised dramatic poem - it was tough, but we actually did quite well.
It made me think a lot about the language I use when I'm writing a play, I've never really thought about it before, I've just written.
The group is such a lovely group and it's just so nice being in the company of other writers.
Halfway through the class I had a Eureka moment for my play!

Other news: I haven't snacked today at all - Ooo, I'm doing much better than I thought I would!

Tuesday, 19 February 2008

Fat Friends!

First news to report. I had my rehearsal with the cast tonight and it went so well, I couldn't be happier. They put so much work in and the feedback from the first few pages of script was great, thankfully they all seem to really like it - phew. And have I mentioned what a lovely bunch they are?

Other news. Myself and three friends went to Boots on our lunch break and weighed ourselves on the scales! It was completely embarrassing because the machine actually talked loudly, but thankfully didn't yell out our weight! I'm a little bit over weight - like 0.5% or something.
I'm trying my best to cut out the rubbish and straight after rehearsals tonight I went to the gym!

I'm also thinking of joining a class at my gym - it's called 'Chair Dancing.' You get to pretend to be a Pussycat Doll or something, but quite frankly any exercise whilst your sat down is good enough for me!

Monday, 18 February 2008

I Am Such A Twerp...

I've forgotten to put the start time on my posters and I've also put the wrong email address... The poster is already at the printers and I'm frantically trying to stop it before it gets printed!! I'm so stupid!

Other news - my printer is next to me, printing the first scene for tomorrow nights rehearsal - I can't wait. Fingers crossed the cast are happy with it!

** UPDATE**

The printers have just emailed me. They aren't printing them until tomorrow and will make the changes for me! Lesson learnt Ms Lawton!

Sunday, 17 February 2008

Phew!

I don't mind admitting that I woke up in a bit of a fluster this morning. My whole day yesterday was spent sorting out a poster, making a brand spanking new website for TSL Productions my production company and promoting my play on Facebook - if you have a Facebook account - you can find me under Sally Lawton and please join my group TSL Productions.

So the promotion was going to plan, just a shame I didn't have any kind of a play!

'Why are you listening to Phill Collins?' Mr Sally asked me last night.
'I'm looking for inspiration.'

I awoke this morning feeling a bit sick, but Phill was still ringing in my ears. I just needed a starting point and knew once I had one I'd be fine.
Of course I'm also aware that the theatre may also attract kids/adults that don't go to the theatre that often and the opening like anything is mega important.

So how have I started it?
Phill Collins 'In The Air Tonight' plays as the lights go up and we watch one of the characters prepare the room for the self-help group.
The song is perfect for what I want the play to be about. It's also a great way to introduce one of the most mixed-up characters I've ever written about.
I also had fun watching back the filming I did of the improv workshop the other day with the cast.
I got completely stuck in to it and I've written and written all day. I have six pages - the opening. It's funny, confusing and finally I know where it's going and which journey each of the characters are going to embark upon. But you know what it's like with stong minded characters - it could all change by tomorrow.

At least I'll sleep well tonight - thanks Phill!

Saturday, 16 February 2008

Ooo I Am Clever!

I've just made the poster for my play and I love it!!! I've tried to keep it simple.




Would this make you go and watch my play? Hope so!

Title

The play now has a title, it took a whole day yesterday of pondering and daydreaming out of the back window and finally (with a little help from Mr Sally) the title hit me around 8pm.
My new play is called:

DOUBLE CLICK

Oh, I'm so very excited! Lots of writing to do today, so hopefully I'll have something interesting to talk about later!

Friday, 15 February 2008

The Cast!

I thought I'd introduce you to my lovely new cast!
Sorry if the pictures are all over the place, blogger is getting on my nerves!


Toby aka Jeff the sex-addict!


Vicky aka Anne the straight laced girl with a BIG secret.


Ali aka George the local TV news reporter!

Paul aka Douglas the train trolley man!






Rian aka Carly the 'girl.' --------->





Abigail aka Bernice -Wannabe WAG!



Mark aka Ralph - Runs the self-help group,but needs help himself!

My Valentines

I had such a busy day yesterday, apart from a cup of tea in the morning, I didn't have another sip of anything until 6pm!
I woke up to gorgeous roses from Mr Sally.


They came in their own vase, and are so cute
I dropped Mr Sally off at work and spent my entire day food shopping. I did a huge shop in Tesco and then when I got home I realised I'd forgotten half the things I went in for, so I drove to ASDA as I couldn't bear going back to Tesco!
Whilst trying to clean the house, put the washing out, prepare our evening meal - I managed to bake this cake for Mr Sally!


I then quickly showered and changed, ran out of the house armed with Mr Sally's SatNAV - my neighbour caught me and I'm too polite to say, 'Please stop talking I'm going to be VERY LATE!' So we chatted for a bit, then I think he could see the panic in my eyes and said bye.
I jumped in the car, realised I didn't have to holder for the SatNAV so had to balance it in the ashtray drawer.
SatNAV took me a strange way to Salford and then told me I had reached my destination and I was absolutely nowhere near my destination.
I quickly located where I was and without the help of SatNAV I found it!
I was at the Salford Arts Theatre to meet the people that run it.
They were so lovely and showed me around the whole theatre, FOH, Backstage etc.
We then chatted about price of tickets, details needed on the posters and stuff.
I'm getting really excited about the whole project now!
Then I went to pick Mr Sally up from work and then I cooked us a lovely meal and we had a lovely evening!

Wednesday, 13 February 2008

Who's Line Is It Anyway?!

What a bloomin brilliant day.

I drove in with Mr Sally this morning so that I could go swimming at my gym, do some Valentine's shopping, go to the library and then off to rehearsals!

I can't believe how well today went. From past plays I've done, you cast people, they seem lovely, then they mess you around with availabiliy, then when you move heaven and earth to work around them, on the eleventh hour they pull out because they have decided it clashes too much with their glass collecting job and you're back to square one trying to re-cast.
Or
You audition them, they seem lovely and grounded as well as talented, you cast them and they walk in to rehearsals with the biggest chip on their shoulders and the whole process stops being fun, fun, fun and all about them, them, them! *

'I can't work with any more divas,' I said to Mr Sally this morning.
'You said they all seemed nice.'
'They do, but they always do.'

Anyway, with a deep breath I walked in to rehearsals this afternoon and it was brilliant, just brilliant.
Everyone seemed enthusiastic and excited and more importantly willing to work hard. They gelled as a cast very quickly, perhaps because I made them do loads of silly improv games, but every singe one of them got stuck in to it.
They all did their homework and came prepared with their invented characters. And after three hours work, it was lovely to watch the characters develop before our very eyes.

I filmed lots of scenes to help keep things fresh in my mind, but I have the play in my head now, I can finally start writing the thing.

Characters Include:
- A sex addict
- A guy who reads the news on local TV and can't stop talking in his TV voice (which is so funny)!
- A wannabe WAG!
- A 30 year old fan dancer! (She dances with fans and is very old fashioned)!
- A girl who's in her 20's who acts like she's a teenager!
- A man who runs a self help group, but has no confidence himself!
- And a man who works on the trolleys on trains, and strings all his sentences together without taking a breath!

So as you can see, very disfunctional.

It's going to be set in a self-help group for Internet Addicts!
And that's all I can say at the moment, because I don't know anymore.

Much, much writing to do between now and the next rehearsal on Tuesday!

* If you are a past cast member, don't stress. No my darling, I'm not talking about you. For you were wonderful, truly wonderful.

Tuesday, 12 February 2008

Rehearsals

Rehearsals start tomorrow for my play and I'm getting excited, even though I still get waves of nerves hoping I can actually pull this thing off!

The place I'll be using to rehearse is brilliant. Manchester has a very famous street, no not Coronation Street, we also have Canal Street aka The Gay Village. It's a row of gay bars along the canal.
Not only is it lovely and friendly down there, but nothing quite beats sitting outside on a sunny day with a drink.




At the bottom end of the row is a bar called Taurus Bar, it's well known because the downstairs room has been changed in to a theatre space. They offer the space for free, which is great for people like me who don't have much of a budget.
The space has been used as a theatre space, but also as a rehearsal space. They could charge people to use it, even now when it's so well known and so popular, they still don't charge. All you do is ask at the bar if you can use the room, they get the diary out and if the slot's free they write you in.
I've seen some great plays there and I've used it to hold my all of my auditions.

It's a lovely bar, with comfy sofas. I've found myself sat in there on many a rainy afternoon doing some writing. The staff are great too.
So tomorrow 2pm-5pm I'll be there doing my big improv workshop with my brand spanking new cast!!

BRING IT ON!

Full Cast!

I have now fully cast my play!

Auditions yesterday were fun. Some people just didn't turn up, which was a bit rude. The people that did were great and full of enthusiasm.

I now have a cast of 7 and one lady is going to help us on the creative side. So all in all yesterday was extremely productive.

Tomorrow is the fist cast meeting and the improv session. Hopefully after tomorrow I'll have a better idea of where the play's going!

Saturday, 9 February 2008

Send & Delete!

It's been a nice day today, Mr Sally and I went for a really nice walk.

I've been clearing out my computer too. I've got loads of photos on it and so I've just set myself up with a Flickr account.
I've added them to the account and then deleted them off the computer, it's been quite good fun looking back at old memories.

If you want to have a look at photos of my plays, comedy sketches or my family and friends then feel free to check out my FLICKR account!

Spring is in the air...

Here's a pic of my new hair do, taken this morning in my back garden!

What a lovely day, the sun is shining. Mr Sally and I got up early this morning. We don't really have any plans for today. I've got to get on with planning auditions for my play. I'm holding them on Monday afternoon and have quite a few people lined up.
I also need to get on with planning the play in general.
All very exciting.





Friday, 8 February 2008

Friday Feeling...

Despite being screamed at by a horrible, horrible man on the telephone in work today - I still managed to get my target. I also managed to get quite a nice bit of bonus pay this month.
Every Friday my boss buys us treats, we have wine and snacks. I stuffed my face with heart shaped cup cakes whilst telling my friends about my new healthy eating plan, which isn't going to plan at all.
But that's it, as of this weekend I'm cutting out all the rubbish and I'm going to the gym every day next week.

It's half term next week, which means we get a week off work. I always look forward to the half term weeks so that I can concentrate on writing things, but at the moment Mr Sally and I are watching our money and I've agreed to work next week. I'm taking Wed and Thu off though, otherwise I'd really resent not being off!

Other news - we've done a Euro Millions syndicate in work. I now have 12 chances of winning the 90million prize fund!!
We've spent the whole day planning what we'd do with the money... if I don't blog for a while, you know why!!

I've just started reading Adele Parks' new book - and so far so bloomin good!

Wednesday, 6 February 2008

Everybody Needs Good Neighbours

What an utterly useless waste of a day.
Here was the original plan.

-Get up with Mr Sally.
-Follow him to the car garage in my car as his car was due in for a service.
-Take Mr Sally to work.
-Get home, do some writing.
-Pick Mr Sally up from work and take him to the garage to collect his car.
- Drive to Oldham for my playwriting group/course.

Here's what actually happened.
- Got up with Mr Sally.
- Got in my car and realised the battery had died.
-Phoned the road service people.
-Waited an hour, service man came and jump started the car.
- Followed Mr Sally to the garage.
- Get in to my car to drop Mr Sally off at work, battery dead (again).
-Car gets jump started and told to go to Halfords as my battery is in warrenty (and my Dad who lives in Wales has the reciept. My dad spends a frantic hour looking for reciept.)
- Halfords say they need the reciept before they can give me a new battery. Did a battery check and said it probably just needs a good run out. So I take Mr Sally to Manchester and drop him off at work.
- I drive home. Petrol light flashing, but too scared to stop the car to get petrol!
- Get home, phew!
- Dad phones to say he has found reciept, but he's in Wales and I'm in Manchester. Hm.
- Dad phones Halfords and they agree to swap the battery if I can get my car in.
- Get in my car to get petrol - BATTERY DEAD AGAIN!
-Mr Sally trying to work out how to get home, to get my battery to Halfords without a car as his car is being serviced.
Are you still with me? :)
- I see my neighbour Nige coming home from work. He starts work at 5:00am and is obviously tired from his shift, but he drops everything to help me.
- He tries to jump start my car, it doesn't work.
- Our other neighbour brings his jump-leads out and we get it started.
- Nige, being the lovely neighbour he is. Takes the battery out of my car and drives me to Halfords to get my new battery.
- Nige then puts the new battery on to my car and it's WORKING!

If it hadn't been for my lovely neighbour, I don't know what I would have done. I managed to pick Mr Sally up and get him to the garage to pick his car up.
I was too late to go to my course tonight, I'm gutted and annoyed. My head's thumping, I've just had a nice bubble bath and a beer though and I'm ready for bed!

Today was honestly a complete waste of a day, but maybe not really - because it's completely confirmed that there are some lovely people in this world, and I'm thankful one of them happens to be my neighbour. I'll have to buy him some beers as a thank you.

Other news: My hair has been cut. I have a chin-length bob and I actually really like it. I'll pop some photos up soon!

Monday, 4 February 2008

Ouch! (This is probably going to be a long one!)

Day One of the whole new me...

My new heels were quite hard to walk in. 'You look nice,' Mr Sally smiled this morning. 'But you don't look very comfortable.'
'I'm fine,' I said, sneeking a pair of pumps in to my bag.
Once I left Mr Sally at the theatre, off I trotted to work and let me tell you - the streets of Manchester are not exactly 'woman friendly.' What with the pot holes, sloping pavements and COBBLES, it was a very unstable walk. A man on crutches actually OVER-TOOK me!

Of course the girls at work admired my heels, I always wear pumps, uggs - anything for comfort as I'm always rushing about.
I took my heels off the minute I sat at my desk and put my pumps on, much better.

My boss actually asked me if I was having an affair! I obviously never make an effort in work, ever! Ha!

My friends convinced me at the end of the day to put my heels back on before I left. So I did, and I slowly walked up to the shops until I could bear it no more. I walked in to Oxfam and said to the girl behind the counter. 'Hello, I'm wearing heels.'
'Lovely,' she grinned at me like I was a bit 'special.'
'They're killing me. Would you mind if I just swapped them for the pumps in my bag? Only, I don't want you looking at me stuffing a pair of shoes in to my bag thinking I'm a theif.'
She laughed and let me change my shoes.
'Where are your heels?' Mr Sally asked when I met him outside the gym.
'Don't ask!'

So, then I went to the gym. Except the work out I got was not what I hoped.
The receptionist gave me a padlock for my locker as I didn't have mine. I put my things in to my locker as I needed the loo. I came back to the locer and couldn't open it.
I stood there for about ten minutes trying to open it and it wouldn't budge. A girl tried to help me and she couldn't open it either.
So I had to go to reception, they sent a butch woman back to the changing rooms with me with some bolt cutters. (I felt so stupid.)
Anyway, she actually managed to open my locker without having to use the bolt cutters!
Then I got changed, did something with my padlock again and couldn't open it. I felt close to tears and was very close to putting my clothes back on and waiting for Mr Sally in McDonalds, but finally it opened.
I had a relaxing (ish) swim and I had some spa time with Mr Sally.

Oh what fun!

** sorry for any spelling, punctuation errors on this blog. I'm writing it very quickly as I want to read my book for a bit and chill out with Mr Sally! **

Sunday, 3 February 2008

My New Play!

I've done it. I've just gone and booked the theatre for my next play. The play I don't have a script for and the play I don't have a cast for (yet)! I'm booked in for April 17th, 18th & 19th.
The lovely lady at Salford Arts Theatre has given me a nice deal for three days at her venue, and it's a lovely venue too!

The seating and stage!

The outside

The very cute and funky Front of House area!
My play is currently un-titled.
I'll be holding auditions Mon 11th Feb and, on Fri 15th Feb with my small cast I'll be holding an improvised session, where they will create their own characters and this will form the starting point of my script.
I've decided not to perform in this one and concentrate fully on the writing and producing of it. Hopefully I'll also get someone else to direct too.
This is a HUGE leap for me as I care about my plays so much, I usually try and do everything and hate to delegate. But I'm not Superwoman and I think for it to be a success I need to trust others too. (I'm being much firmer this time around - after learning the hard way with past productions).
Two actors from a previous play have shown an interest in working on this project, which I think might work because I totally trust them and think they are both brilliant actors.
But I'm also looking forward to meeting new actors too.
The thing I've hated from past experiences is the fact that becasue I can't pay the actors, but in return I try and invite as many agents and casting directors as possible for them, some within the first week of rehearsals always mess me about with rehearsal availability. They say they're completely free in the audition, then once they've been cast they pull out a list of dates they can't do. It's so frustrating. Which is why I have to be firmer this time, I don't have time to waste.
So fingers crossed this works, or I could find myself doing a one-woman show!!


Catching my breath!

I just found myself on the 'Weight Watchers' website!


Lately I've been feeling bloated and run down a lot. I don't feel healthy at all. I have been eating lots of fruit, but have no idea what's right and wrong with the food I eat.
For example for my lunch in work, I used to get a jaket spud with beans and some grated cheese on top. I thought that was healthy. But apparently cheese and beans shouldn't be mixed!?

I have no idea about calories and stuff, I've never dieted in my life. I think you should eat in moderation and eat the things you like - however, I really need to get healthier.

I'm not on a diet and never will be, I just want to eat the right things and also I need to start exercising.

So I've written down the foods Weight Watchers tell you to eat, and I'm back at the gym tomorrow.

Of course I promised Mr Sally we'd have a chippy tea tonight, but that's OK because the Weight Watchers site says you should have a portion of fish and at least one potatoe/carb meal...

This isn't going to work is it??!

No, it is. It has to. There's no way I'm going to let myself get to the summer and not be nice and healthy!

** Here's an example of how un-fit I've become**

The other day I was about to get in to the lift to my office (it's up six flights of stairs). When a rather attractive man stepped in, and not being one for 'lift conversations' I decided to walk briskly up the stairs.
I just got to the top of the stairs when the attractive man stepped out of the lift, and I was that out of breath I almost collapsed on the floor in a heap.



Saturday, 2 February 2008

Snow is Falling... and then MELTING!

I woke up this morning to my very own Winter Wonderland! It seems it snowed in the night and stuck.
The little boy who lives accross the road from us was out sledging down the hill at 9:00am!

I was so excited when I saw the snow. I took some photos because I knew it wouldn't last long and I was right, it's started to melt!


This is the view through my living room window, looking out to our front garden.


This is the view from the side of my back garden.



This is the view to the right of my bedroom window. The hill has seen mega sledging this afternoon!

This is the view from my bedroom window.
This is the view to the very right of my bedroom window!
I've stayed inside all day, I was going to pop out and do some shopping but decided a hot cup of tea and ebay will do the trick.
What's the weather like everywhere else?
Anyone else got snow?
Anyone got sunshine?

X







Shoes and Hair

Here's a photo of my petrol blue shoes! 'The blue is much more vibrant than the photo!'


They look nicer in 'real life!' I've not worn them yet, but think they'll look really cute under a pair of jeans.

As for my hair cut today - I've decided to go to my trusted salon on Tue instead. It'll be cheaper and I get to have the top stylist for half price!
So no hair cut today, but I have been shopping and bidding on ebay - Oh God, I'm actually hooked!

Friday, 1 February 2008

No Snow

Happy it's Friday!

I overslept this morning, when I had planned to get the early bus and hit Waterstones before work for some new books.
It didn't happen and I was soooo annoyed with myself.

It was supposed to snow, that didn't happen either!

Tomorrow I've booked in for a hair cut at my local salon. It's double what I pay in Manchester as I get a half price discount at the salon my friend works at - but I need it doing asap, I can't wait any longer.
I shall take a photo tomorrow once it's done. My friends in work have talked me in to getting a long bob and a sweeping fringe! We'll see!

As for writing - this weekend I'll be getting back in to ALTER-EGO and I can't wait.
 
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