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Samantha Rodriguez
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A personal year in review. by Samantha Rodriguez (playwright) 2015 has been a really turbulent year for a lot of people. It certainly has been for me. I've fallen on my face time after time and, frankly, I'm exhausted. I had a mild nervous breakdown. I graduated school. A lot of people exited my life. I moved back to my hometown. I decided to go to grad school, changed my mind, changed my mind again, and finally decided to hold off. I came out rather publicly. I failed 31/31. I failed NaNoWriMo even harder. I got a part-time retail job... Continue reading
Posted Dec 21, 2015 at Crazytown
Words of wisdom from poet Ashe Vernon. by Samantha Rodriguez (playwright) It's been about six months since I graduated from art school, and in those six months I've spent a lot of time exploring my own relationship with my art. I go through spurts of producing a great deal of work followed by very long periods where I have zero desire to work on any of my much beloved projects. After I sent them an ask on Tumblr, one of my favorite poets Ashe Vernon had some really solid advice. I asked: how do you write consistently when you feel... Continue reading
Posted Dec 7, 2015 at Crazytown
A little seasonal reminder for Black Friday-lovers everywhere. by Samantha Rodriguez (playwright) Dear Black Friday Shoppers, Your big day is almost here. I have to admit, I admire your tenacity, your iron-clad will that allows you to wait in line at 3am so you can get the best deals. Maybe it's part of your holiday tradition. Maybe you just really like to save money on buying presents or treating yourself. Either way, I think that's awesome. What I don't admire sometimes is your behavior. My dear, dear Black Friday consumers, please remember that the people helping you save money by... Continue reading
Posted Nov 23, 2015 at Crazytown
More thoughts on living with an anxiety disorder. by Samantha Rodriguez (playwright) I spend a lot of time thinking about anxiety. Usually my anxiety, but often anxiety as a concept, a phenomena, that affects a lot of people I care about. I think about the way anxiety is perceived in different contexts, how it affects different people different ways. How it keeps cropping up in unexpected places. Somehow, I haven't really considered the relationship between ambition and anxiety. I think I'm a fairly ambitious person. In elementary school I wanted to be the first female popstar vampire president who also... Continue reading
Posted Nov 16, 2015 at Crazytown
Exploring the relationship between my art and my anxiety disorder. by Samantha Rodriguez (playwright) I have spent the past two weeks consumed by my anxiety disorder. "Your room is a mess? Just clean it! You're trying to change your eating habits? Just eat better! You're trying to be more active? Just do it!" These are all examples of things that are supremely unhelpful for me, an extremely anxious human, to hear, regardless of intent. Rather than adding to my sense of motivation, it adds to the nagging thought that these things should be easy for me, because they are for... Continue reading
Posted Nov 2, 2015 at Crazytown
Making the most of my down-time before November hits! by Samantha Rodriguez (playwright) We're about halfway through October, and November is looming ever closer, promising holiday festivities and massive sales–and the return of NaNoWriMo. I myself have never attempted National Novel Writing Month–a challenge to write a 50,000 word manuscript from start to finish all during November. I've never believed I possessed the attention span to write a full novel with or without a hard deadline, but at some point this year, an idea for a play quickly revealed itself as an idea for a novel, which has since revealed... Continue reading
Posted Oct 19, 2015 at Crazytown
And no, there aren't necessarily dogs involved. by Samantha Rodriguez (playwright) Taking time off after graduation has given me a lot of time to think and really evaluate my priorities. Frankly, I have a stronger sense of myself and what I want from life than ever before. And one thing has become abundantly clear. I need to go WWOOFing. WWOOF stands for World Wide Opportunities on Organic Farms. Essentially, you sign up for a membership with a country's WWOOF group and gain access to a database of their host farms. You can then find farms that might be good fits... Continue reading
Posted Oct 12, 2015 at Crazytown
Sharing a little Internet levity. by Samantha Rodriguez (playwright) Do you ever have one of those weeks where literally nothing can go right and there is just constant, oftentimes incessant drama? That was my entire last week. Nonstop. Without fail. You know what's my positively favorite remedy for bad days? Game Grumps. Game Grumps are a lovable group of five-ish nerds who do a bunch of let's plays on YouTube. I cannot be in a bad mood when I watch one of their videos. I've spent a lot of time watching their stuff lately, and they simply do not disappoint.... Continue reading
Posted Oct 5, 2015 at Crazytown
A reexamination of Ophelia is long overdue. by Chloe Seyer (drama student) I’ve taken several classes, high school and college, that we studied Hamlet in. And I’ll tell you what: regardless of the setting, the type of class (literature, art, theater whatever), and the age of the students, someone has always piped up with something along the lines of: “Okay, but didn’t Ophelia have it coming a little bit? She lead Hamlet on and then dropped him, I mean she’s kind of a skank?” "I'm not a model the camera just went off" I want to talk about this, because... Continue reading
Posted Sep 28, 2015 at Crazytown
It's been a jam-packed week! by Samantha Rodriguez (playwright) It's been a whirlwind week for me. I took on NYC once again with my best friend at my side, sleeping on futons and cramming as much theatre as possible into four short days. Then, immediately after returning to Atlanta, I headed to Music Midtown for two days of music and sunshine over in Piedmont Park. Our New York trip was fantastic and awful at the same time. We were fortunate enough to see Spring Awakening, Fun Home, Cloud Nine, and Mercury Fur in addition to catching a matinee of Goodnight... Continue reading
Posted Sep 21, 2015 at Crazytown
Four of the biggest horror movies out in time for Halloween! by Samantha Rodriguez (playwright) It's September, which means only one thing: Halloween is coming. I'm an avid horror fan, so the fall is a really exciting time. We're always guaranteed at least one enjoyable (if not necessarily good) horror flick. So, here are the four pre-Halloween movies that I'm absolutely dying to see... Goodnight Mommy (dir. Veronika Franz and Severin Fiala, limited release, out now) While the American trailer for Goodnight Mommy suggests a non-stop hundred minute thrill ride, the Austrian trailer promises viewers a much quieter brand of... Continue reading
Posted Sep 14, 2015 at Crazytown
The intense playwriting challenge comes to an end! by Samantha Rodriguez (playwright) We've done it, playwrights! Whether you wrote a single play or a hundred plays this month, you did it. You survived the month. You have lived to write another play. That's awesome. Maybe this is your third or fourth time around the block, and 31/31 was a major breeze. That rocks! Go you! Or maybe you're like me. Maybe you struggled. Maybe you didn't even finish. I'm here to tell you that's okay. I'm personally looking at a whopping fifteen plays to attempt to finish by midnight tomorrow... Continue reading
Posted Aug 31, 2015 at Crazytown
In which my need for breaks ends up causing me massive stress. Oops. by Samantha Rodriguez (playwright) I'm not going to lie. I've really dropped the ball this month. We're into Week 3 of 31 Plays in 31 Days. This is Day 24. And I only have fifteen plays to show for it. On the one hand: fifteen plays! Woohoo! That's fifteen more than I had on July 31st! Fifteen for you Glen Coco! On the other hand? 15/24 is not an A+. Life loves throwing curveballs, and I am not always able to catch them all. These past two... Continue reading
Posted Aug 24, 2015 at Crazytown
In which I explore (once again!) the importance of taking breaks. by Samantha Rodriguez (playwright) We're on day 17 of 31 for this year's 31 Plays in 31 Days! I, for one, had a little thing called life get in the way this past week: between personal illness and family obligations, I had reached maximum capacity. I could not even think about getting my creative juices flowing. I tried to force it, and I felt immensely stressed. I have fragments written for Days 10-16, but I simply haven't finished anything. And that's okay. The visual prompt for Day 16. I... Continue reading
Posted Aug 17, 2015 at Crazytown
Lessons learned in the first week of the 31/31 challenge. by Samantha Rodriguez (playwright) We're into Day 10 of 31 in the 31 Plays in 31 Days challenge, and the only real advice I can give is learn how to get out of your own way. Your writer friends want you to succeed. Your friends and/or family want you to be happy. Sure, there will always be haters and nay-sayers, but ultimately? We, the artists in question, can be our own worst enemies. We get into our heads. We make excuses. We disappoint, we leave a mess, we die but... Continue reading
Posted Aug 10, 2015 at Crazytown
Tips for surviving the 31/31 challenge! by Samantha Rodriguez (playwright) August is upon us, playwrights! We’re out the gate and into Day #3 of 31 Plays in 31 Days. The prospect of writing so many short, concise plays can seem daunting even while in the thick of it. This playwright’s strategy? Read the inspiration post of the day, set a timer for thirty minutes, and simply write. It’s extremely liberating, and gets me out of my head because I don’t have time to edit myself until something’s already on the page. Then the piece gets a brief edit, and goes... Continue reading
Posted Aug 3, 2015 at Crazytown
Get pumped for this writing challenge coming up in August! by Samantha Rodriguez (playwright) You've heard of NaNoWriMo, but have you heard of 31 Plays in 31 Days? The name pretty much says it all: for the month of August, participants write a play a day. Two writing prompts will be posted each day to provide some inspiration, along with "Play Dates" with participants, which are part interview, part writing exercise. Seem hard to believe? I attempted the challenge last year–I didn't succeed, but I did write a fair amount of ten-minute plays that are now either stand-alones or the... Continue reading
Posted Jul 27, 2015 at Crazytown
Or, How I Realized I Need to Listen to My Body by Samantha Rodriguez (playwright) I have always been extremely competitive. I'm not really sure why, but for some reason, I have this insatiable desire to be the best, the brightest, the most accomplished. It isn't something I'm proud of, but it's there. It's mine. High school felt like a time trial to me. I was an overachiever in a school full of overachievers. I sprinted through those four years with enough success to keep me satisfied–nevermind the day without sleep, the constant sick days, my rapidly deteriorating social life.... Continue reading
Posted Jul 20, 2015 at Crazytown
Tips for conquering geographically-inspired FOMO. by Samantha Rodriguez (playwright) I may be from the South and absolutely love to travel to new places, but at the end of the day, I’m probably thinking about New York. Nine times out of ten, I’m only thinking about theatre–and the other times I’m thinking about how much I miss S’MAC. In New York, exciting new works open and close in the blink of an eye. I may visit a couple times a year, but you can only cram so many shows into one trip before you start to burn out. (Believe me, I've... Continue reading
Posted Jul 13, 2015 at Crazytown
A quick note from a spontaneous farm getaway! by Samantha Rodriguez (playwright) I'm writing to you this week from a farm in a little town on the border of Louisiana and Texas. I'm a city girl through and through, but you can't beat home-cooked food, quiet nights, and plenty of stars. This weekend I've played with cows, set off tons of fireworks, and learned to drive a Gator! I'm telling you, this place is paradise. It's been great to unplug. The most important thing I've been reminded of this week: if the opportunity to experience something new presents itself, take... Continue reading
Posted Jul 6, 2015 at Crazytown
Friday's announcements were almost enough to make my gay nerd heart explode. by Samantha Rodriguez (playwright) In the midst of the monumental SCOTUS decision this weekend, J.K. Rowling took to Twitter to announce that a new, original Harry Potter story would soon be making its way to the West End. The project, Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, seems to be spearheaded by Rowling, director John Tiffany (of recent Once and Let the Right One In fame), and writer Jack Thorne (of Let the Right One In). As a long-time Potterhead, I am beside myself with speculation. There are rumors... Continue reading
Posted Jun 29, 2015 at Crazytown
It's not like anyone really ASKS for writer's block... by Samantha Rodriguez (playwright) I know I’m in trouble when I sit down at my computer, open a fresh Word document, and spend fifteen minutes trying to convince myself to even touch the keyboard. Then I’ll busy myself trying to find the perfect playlist for the piece I want to work on. Then, I’ll complain to myself about the temperature of the room but refuse to stand up because leaving the computer means admitting defeat. So I sit. And wait. And wait. By this point, I’ve written maybe a sentence, I’ve... Continue reading
Posted Jun 22, 2015 at Crazytown
As an SM I love an actor who loves tech. You're totally right, the best shows are the ones that invite you to sincerely suspend your disbelief, especially when you've been doing theatre for a long time. Break a leg tomorrow!
Toggle Commented Jun 17, 2015 on 10 OUT OF 12 at Crazytown
That list of bars is super helpful! I'll keep it in mind next time I'm in the city!
Toggle Commented Jun 17, 2015 on THE FIVE BLOCK RULE at Crazytown
A lesson in patience for the chronically impatient. by Samantha Rodriguez (playwright) Being a Type A personality can be pretty exhausting. I have a tendency to stress myself out about every minor detail of my life. Just this morning I was brainstorming ways to resolve the fact that none of my bedroom furniture matches before I switched over to organizing all the documents in my Google Drive for the fifth time this month. I have always felt the most confident when I have control over my situation and surroundings, resting easily only in the knowledge that my life is as... Continue reading
Posted Jun 15, 2015 at Crazytown