So, our first Internet Play is complete and posted. Looking back, I’m very proud of what we did. I was going to write a long post all about what Goodnight Princess is about and the writing process we went through to get it from idea to finished product. Instead, though, I’d like to write about the reactions people have had (I am going to write about the process, but I’ll post that next week). Firstly, though, please take the time to watch all three acts (together they last less than 10 minutes):
UPDATE: I’ve added a new page to the site for Goodnight Princess where I’ll keep you up to date with developments.
It’s bittersweet, this life.
The Verve have two songs that often bring me to tears. I can’t listen to “The Drugs Don’t Work” without having a Kleenex to hand and a few minutes to spare so I can swallow down the lump in my throat and compose myself. The lyrics get me EVERY SINGLE TIME and yet I still want to experience it. It brings me back to a time when grief was raw and ragged and consuming. When I’m done with the drugs, “Bittersweet Symphony” is the palate cleanser. Still a mournful song but one that does leave me with hope. [I was just writing this when I saw the first hummingbird of the year!]
When we posted Act 1, I was careful to say it was an ‘Internet Drama’, and different to what I normally do. I love the humour, it’s the part of me that I express the most. On my other blog, I slant most things to the lighter side because that’s the way I see things. “Goodnight Princess” is a counterpoint to that, but is not without intentional (and possibly unintentional) humour. I was nervous about what people might think. Maybe no one would be interested, or they might think it was crap – and I didn’t want anyone to think I was tricking them into watching something they would rather not have seen.
A New Hope
I am immensely thankful to all the people who have watched so far. Many are people I’ve known for a long time on the interwebs through the various communities, message boards and social media sites I’m a part of. Some are new people who stumbled on the videos and stayed to watch. Comments have been really positive, but it’s clear people are interpreting events in different ways – AND THAT IS JUST FINE!
Back to School
Remember in English Literature classes, when you had to write an essay about what the author meant in the poem/play/book you were reading? And how disappointing it was when your teacher told you, in front of the whole class, that you were completely wrong and how stupid you were for thinking that a sunset might be, you know, a sunset? This graphic demonstrates the phenomenon exactly.
My Dad used to quote T S Eliot to me: “Great poetry communicates before it is understood.” I think that’s right, and doesn’t just apply to poetry (great or otherwise). I love imagery, word play and subtlety. Songs, films, pictures, TV shows, webseries – all can have meanings beyond what is placed in front of us. Sometimes an avatar is just an avatar. And sometimes it is something very different.
I am not T S Eliot
I don’t think “Goodnight Princess” is all that (radculture reference), but we did write it to have meaning beyond the words spoken. What that meaning might be is clear to us, but we left it open enough for people to bring their own experiences and interpretations to it. This was a labour of love, and a gamble. Shortform online drama is not any sort of recognised genre for webseries and though I have looked for other examples, I’ve yet to find them. The fact that people have watched all the episodes and cared enough to comment about it means a great deal. It has moved people, maybe even made them think a bit. Job done.
Over to you
So, what do you think? Were you confused by Goodnight Princess? Do you like to know what things are about from the writer/creator, or are you happy to keep your own interpretations?