I spent most of the day going through the stacks of submissions, reorganizing, shifting, reading through ones we're passing on to make sure we aren't missing any gems.
We're entering a really exciting phase in the selection process, as we've now narrowed it down to a manageable number to really talk about in our committee meetings.
As it stands now, we've got about 20 plays that at least two of our readers really want to champion, and another 30 or so that at least one reader feels really strongly about.
The first group will get read by the whole committee, and the second will be read by two more readers, who will help determine if it ends up in that final group. Then they'll be a lot of arguing, a lot of teeth gnashing, some voting, more arguing, and eventually a decision. Theoretically we're going to finish the selection process by the end of the month, although that's looking a little too optimistic.
At this point, every play I'm reading is really strong, which is both invigorating and anxiety inducing. If you've ever been a reader of any kind, you know there's no better feeling than picking up a play by someone you've never heard of and being astounded by the quality of the writing. It's happening a lot right now, and we only have five slots in the festival. Hence the anxiety...