We here at CARD are incredibly proud to announce the recent success of one of our recent TLA graduates, Erica King, at the 4×6 Fest. Erica’s internship was at PowerStories Theatre where she got to write, direct and produce her own play called Splatter. Prior to TLA, Erica attended Focus Academy, where she was able to hone some of these creative skills. Erica’s play at the recent 4×6 competition, titled Time to Get a New Car, won the top honor (beating 7 other plays), and because of this she has qualified to compete in the Tampa Bay Theatre Festival on September 2nd at the Straz Center! Her mother, Beverly King, a consultant here at CARD, could not be more proud, and the outpouring of support here at the office has been incredible. As someone who shares her passion for writing, I wish Erica all the best at the upcoming festival. Speaking of which, I sat down with Erica and asked her a few questions, not only about her play-writing, but also how she cultivated this amazing talent. Here were some of her answers:
Q: Where did your passion for writing come from? Has it been there from the beginning or did it develop later in life?
A: If I remember correctly, I think it developed in first grade. We had to write essays in our notebooks, and I’ve loved it ever since.
Q: When did your love for “normal” writing transition into play writing? There’s a pretty big difference between those two things, and I imagine the jump was a difficult one.
A: One day I just started typing up some scripts with actual characters. All of this happened when I was still pretty young, when I just wanted to make some cartoon characters I had created interact with each other. The Timmy Jimmy Power Hour on Nickelodeon was a big inspiration for that.
Q: You mentioned before that you attended the Focus Academy. Could you tell me a little more about that experience and how it affected you?
A: It was basically a school I attended twice a week. There were acting classes and other creative stuff. We’d all come together with our inputs and create a piece that had a bit of everyone involved in it. Then we’d rehearse and perform it for all the parents.
Q: On a similar note, could you talk a little about your time at the Learning Academy? What did you learn and what role did it play in your play writing career?
A: I learned a lot about interviewing at TLA. You can’t just go to an interview without a resume, you need to have references that aren’t family, and you can’t just be a Gaston and claim that you’re the greatest. As for my internship, I was an usher, and the only thing my internship really taught me was how to compromise on details of my play. I got to read one of my plays which allowed me to meet Brianna Larson, the producer of 4×6.
Q: Do you see yourself having a future in play writing, perhaps as a career? Or is this just your current interest that’s more fleeting?
A: I’m interested in both play writing and regular writing. I hope to one day be both an accomplished author and playwright.
– G. Sosso