The Happy Hour
WITH MALLORY JANE WEISS
SUNDAYS @ 4 PM
Join acclaimed playwright Mallory Jane Weiss for a virtual drink and a no-pressure writing class! Enjoy a peek into the mind of Root Beer Occasion’s brilliant resident artist as she offers insight on inspiration, your unique voice, structure, and revision.
PICK YOUR POISON
You can register for one class, all four, or anywhere in between. Like a good whiskey flight, the discussions are designed to be fun and fulfilling whether they're built upon each other or standing alone.
SHARE A DRINK
Each class is paired with a classic cocktail. We'll send you our curated recipe a few days before we meet so you can mix your drink at home.
TIP YOUR SERVER
The Happy Hour classes are pay-what-you-can with a suggested $15 donation. All proceeds will go directly towards supporting artists and creating new art (including future Mallory Jane Weiss productions!)
YOUR SPECIFIC GENIUS & WEIRDNESS
JANUARY 3, 2021
INSPIRATION & GETTING STARTED
DECEMBER 27, 2020
FINDING THE STORY & DOING THE WORK
JANUARY 17, 2021
VESSELS & STRUCTURE
JANUARY 10, 2021
— ALL CLASSES ARE ON SUNDAYS AT 4:00 PM (EST) —
SUNDAY, DECEMBER 27, 2020
4:00 PM (EST)
Inspiration & Getting Started
This week is like mixology 101. That first cocktail of the night, when the evening is full of possibility. How do you stare at a blank page and turn it into something else? Where can you find inspiration? What does your creative process look like? And how can you curate your space, your tools, your mindset, in order to serve as your own muse?
In this happy hour, we’ll talk about the ingredients that make up your work. We’ll look at some pieces of work that inspire me at the beginning of a process. We’ll do some short writing exercises (which have been stolen, lovingly, from other writers) in order to track down your own personal obsessions and get at the heart of what matters to you as a writer right now.
The Old Fashioned
"So, what'll you have?"
SUNDAY, JANUARY 3, 2021
4:00 PM (EST)
Your Specific Genius & Weirdness
“Wait. Y’all. I think this might be the best idea I’ve ever had.”
This week taps into that moment, two cocktails in, when you feel untouchable. When everything in the world (or the bar) makes sense. That moment of drunken clarity. How do you tap into that confidence, that deep knowing, in your work? How do you write the thing that only you could write?
In this happy hour, we’ll look at how to turn our stories, our memories, our dreams, into pieces of art. We’ll read some specially chosen poetry and think about how that which is so inherent to who we are requires translating if it is to make sense to the world. We’ll begin to think about the people we know who might make for good characters, and how our specific ways of making sense of the world might inform what we write about.
SUNDAY, JANUARY 10, 2021
4:00 PM (EST)
Vessels & Structure
"I just love you guys so much!"
This week takes inspiration from that moment (which, for me, is about three cocktails in) when the lights are low in the bar and you’re struck by those deep emotions. Love, melancholy, lust, loneliness. How do we put words to those feelings? How can we use language and structure to convey emotions genuinely?
In this happy hour, we’ll look at structure — of a play, more generally, and of monologues and scenes, more specifically — to see how the vessel plays a key role in authentically describing a feeling state. We’ll discuss my hatred of outlining and why we should let our characters make mistakes. And we’ll start to think about the various ways we might depict the “tough stuff” through monologue, metaphor, and deep structure.
SUNDAY, JANUARY 17, 2021
4:00 PM (EST)
Finding the Story & Doing the Work
"Where's the ibuprofen?"
This week is that feeling you have the morning after the night at the bar. When you just need to pull it together and have a glass of water, since you’re an adult. How can we respect our creative process and also make room to do the work? What does our inner editor need in order to do their best work? How can we approach our work in a non-precious way and when is that appropriate?
This happy hour will be a bit of a shift from the generative process. We’ll explore the process of rewriting (so challenging) and talk about when a play is ready for your criticism. We’ll discuss how to incorporate notes and think about “judges.” We will also talk about how to find the heart of the play and what comes next.