Harry’s Truth – A Play in One Act
I use to want to be a playwright.
I took a program at Playwrights Theatre Centre in Vancouver and with the help of professional dramaturg’s and the other members of the group developed Harry’s Truth, A Play in One Act.
“Harry” even had a “reading” – professional actors read the play aloud. I was blown away and, believe it or not, so were they.
The next step was to take it to production, maybe in conjunction with a couple of other one act plays by other playwrights – make an evening of it.
Whether that would have happened or not I’ll never know. You see, I’m not much of a collaborator and theatre is all about collaboration. By the time Harry’s Truth was ready for production I’d about had it with the affected (def.: artificial, pretentious, and designed to impress) people I’d been working with, and believe me the definition fits when it comes to theatre people.
If you come right down to it I’d rather go it alone and fail than have to work with someone and succeed, which is probably one of the reasons I’m where I am at this point in my career, alone and a failure. Hmm.
Recently I came across Harry’s Truth when I was searching the hard drive of my old laptop. I clicked and remarkably it opened. Nine years had passed and as I read it I thought this isn’t half bad.
The play asks the question, “are there cosmic truths?” Harry thinks there are and he’s discovered one which will make life easier, simpler and more fulfilling. He wants to share this epiphany with those he loves but not only do they not want to share in his enlightenment, they feel threatened by what he has to tell them. Much is at stake – careers, lifestyles, power – if Harry pursues his truth.
Seven scenes, forty-four pages and eleven and a half thousand words later Harry has his answer – the truth doesn’t necessarily set you free, but it can sure make you unpopular.
Harry’s Truth is now available as an e-book (should that be e-script?) at Smashwords. Until July 31st you can download it free as part of Smashwords SummerWinter Sale. Actually, five of my novels are also available free at Smashwords during the same promotion. You can go to my website http://rodraglin.com for direct links.
In a week or so it will be available on Amazon as an e-book and eventually a paperback at http://www.amazon.com/-/e/B003DS6LEU
Harry’s Truth – Synopsis
The truth may not set you free, but it can make you very unpopular.
Are there cosmic truths? Harry thinks there are and he’s discovered one which will make life easier, simpler and more fulfilling. He wants to share this epiphany with those he loves but not only do they not want to share in his enlightenment, they feel threatened by what he has to tell them. Much is at stake – careers, lifestyles, power – if Harry pursues his truth.
For Deidre, his wife – all her life she has worked to overcome the stigma of being the daughter of the neighbourhood drunk. She has struggled for social status, “respectability” and to have “nice things”. Now she has attained it and more is within her grasp. She can’t allow Harry to jeopardize it.
For Philip, his partner – his aggressive manner, lack of sophistication, short stature, balding pate, pudgy midriff and loud ties have made him a subject of derision among his colleagues, but landing this multi-million dollar client will change all that. Soon Harry’s condescension and the humiliation of his marriage will be overshadowed by the respect and power corporate success will bring. The “truth” is he only needs Harry to keep it together until the deal closes. After that, he can goddam well wander off into the wilderness if that’s what he wants.
For Joan, Phil’s wife – the bitterness of her affair with Harry twenty years ago in college has shaped and defined her life, But not Harry’s. No, he just up and left her in search for “the truth” and she had to survive as best she could on her own. Now he’s about to do it again – turn her world upside down with the same selfish, irresponsible behavior. Maybe she can’t stop this middle-age flight of fancy but she isn’t going to let him influence her teenage daughter with all his nonsense about “following your heart”.
For Alexus, Joan’s daughter – her parent’s marriage is empty of love but filled with material possessions. How could “Uncle Harry’s” truth make anything worse? Her mom’s pushing her to go to college but that’s just more “preparing for life”. Uncle Harry’s truth sounds far more appealing. Better to fill your life with experiences than just more “stuff”.