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GUEST COLUMNIST: Cory Moosman and Sammy Gleason on writing for WYNOT Radio Theatre
Editor’s note: This column invites members of local arts and literary organizations to write, in their own words, about aspects of upcoming events. Read the preview of this show.
Sammy Gleason: Our writing process is really one big jumble of smaller “processes” all mashed together. A scene or commercial or episode will start as an idea, usually blurted out by one of us in the car, at Denny’s or in a store.
Cory Moosman: Then we’ll spend a few minutes haggling with each other about details and beats -- accompanied by the occasional high-decibel guffaw, usually from Sammy.
Gleason: I’m loud. What can I say?
Moosman: And then ending with a mad dash to Sammy’s iPhone to type down what we just “wrote."
Gleason: I usually try to word the actual joke “my way” at this point so that when Cory asks, “What was that goldfish and a melon joke we came up with again?” and I can just pull out my phone and say “We decided it was ... ”
Moosman: It doesn’t always work though. Sometimes we have to re-remember what we were going for.
Gleason: Sessions like those eventually lead to a dual writing system on separate computers in separate cities at separate times.
Moosman: I’m based in Pueblo.
Gleason: And I live in Colorado Springs.
Moosman: Which makes writing together a challenge.
Gleason: We use Dropbox, a nifty piece of software that allows us to share documents and other tools instantly, rather than all that mucking about with emails and Facebook.
Moosman: One of us will start a piece of material, and either write a completed first pass at an idea or at least write until we’re out of ideas.
Gleason: Then a quick text alerts the other party to “Pick up where I left off.”
Moosman: Some of our best editing is done this way because we can make changes or suggestions to an idea with plenty of time to fully realize and think them through. We also try to nitpick all during the process to make sure what we’re writing feels “vintage” and right for the voice of the show.
Gleason: You can’t imagine how hard it is for two comically minded individuals to try and fully explain a joke before they both start interrupting each other to build on or improve it. But we never had a fist fight over anything so far.
Moosman: Not yet, anyway.
Gleason: Then it’s more reading through material in various voices, trying out rhythm and sound for the feel of the show. This happens in person, on the phone …
Moosman: Over days, sometimes weeks, then we eventually come to some rough semblance of the script sequence. And that gets us to the rehearsal stage with our crew -- and then the writing process takes on a whole different life.
Gleason: Which is a story for another time.