I love writing fiction, but I’ve only been telling stories this way for a few years. I’ve been telling stories as a theatre director for 15 years! I direct professional theatre productions once or twice a year, and I just finished directing Shakespeare’s Much Ado About Nothing. With this last project, more than ever before, I took away some lessons from directing that I’ll apply to my writing.
In directing, I dissect and interpret an established work (in this case, the best of the best: The Bard) with a team of actors. When I write, I put down a story word by word. But it’s all storytelling, and I find there’s a lot to steal when crossing disciplines.
It’s been a rough year. I don’t think many will argue about that. But even during this rough year—especially during this rough year—I am thankful for all things creative. I am thankful I can turn to creativity and the arts, and I’m thankful for my own good year of creativity.
(And I don’t say “good” meaning any recognized, measurable unit of success. I mean that I enjoyed the creativity of others and experienced personal creativity growth… and I’m thankful for it.)
1) I am thankful for stories
Whether it’s a book (I’ve read 72 so far this year!), a play, a painting—I love stories. I have a fiction addiction! I get to experience things I would never get to in my ever...
“We didn't find a solution for the conflict of the #BlackLivesMatter movement, or the strong disagreements between political camps, or any other conflict between groups—not even close. But we did get to experience first-hand a small, small sense of what it feels like when the rules are not the same.”
During my MBA program at George Mason University, I worked as a teaching assistant for an undergraduate management course. After graduation, I’ve continued serving as an Adjunct for Management 303: Principles of Management. I love being the recitation instructor for this course, because:
The course covers practical topics that we encounter every day in the work place
To help me in my job with Fairfax Library Foundation, I just finished visiting 22 branches of Fairfax County Public Library (the 23rd branch has been closed for renovation during my 10 months with the library system). I learned that Fairfax County is enormous and that each branch is a little different—as are the communities. Bottom line, I was impressed. Here are my major takeaways from my great library journey:
1. Libraries are busy
These are a few of the programs and services happening in our libraries that I learned about during my library visits:
Search your family tree, Pajama party for children ages 3-5, Civil War lecture, Pokémon Leagu...
Am I doing this right? This is a bio for #PitchWars, thanks for reading! You can find me on twitter here: @abbiei
I am a nonprofit manager (raising money for a library system), fiction writer, theatre director, management adjunct and book nerd. I was born and raised in Fairfax County, Virginia, where I currently live with my aviator husband.
My love for storytelling, performing arts, and directing started at a young age. I would turn any raised surface into a stage (“Watch me, Mommy!”) and I directed my younger sister in games and shows all the time. Thank you, Sister, for allowing me to start my directing career early. Thank you, Parents, for watching m...
I serve as the Director of Development for Fairfax Library Foundation—this means I raise money for the library system. I’m a fundraiser.
I didn’t start out my career hoping to be a fundraiser. I didn’t even think of it. But as I transitioned from theatre director to theatre administrator, I realized how important the fundraising piece is to the health of the organization. It’s the only thing that matters (well, besides the actual art or work or mission… but those things don’t happen without fundraising support. Money makes the world go ‘round, as they say).
So, I’ve had to teach myself the field of development as I go, as many of us do in our career paths. Below are fo...
I read a lot. About two books a week—I’m at 46 books so far this year (with two in progress). Naturally I come across a lot of fabulous books in my reading, and the next best thing to discovering a wonderful book is sharing that book with others. Or maybe sharing it is the best thing. It’s a really good feeling.
I’ve put together my very top book recommendations from the last two to three years of voracious reading. I’m not including the classics (BRIDGE TO TERABITHIA and ENDER’S GAME are still closest to my heart)—this is in answer to the “I’m looking for a new book” inquiries.
You’ll notice most of this list is YA (“Young Adult”) titles. Yup. I love storytelling most...
"And then it’s down to inches. Millimeters, even. I can be (in fact, have to be) picky about what I’m looking for in a role down to super specifics. Sometimes it still comes down to chemistry or type or whatever ‘needs’ of the play."
I just cast a play. I was blown away by the talent and professionalism I saw at auditions. I am so grateful to be in the position to even be writing this post. Here are a few thoughts on this most recent casting process, for what it’s worth – perhaps it will lend insight to others or start a dialogue about this tricky process.
We received 197 submissions for a 12-person cast. Plus the folks on my list (and Casting Director’s & Artisti...