Sunday, April 23


I believe that the way to write a good play is to convince yourself that it is easy to do—-then go ahead and do it with ease.

Don't maul, don't suffer, don't groan—till the first draft is finished.

Then Calvary—but not until then.

Doubt—and be lost—until the first draft is finished.

A Play is a Phoenix—it dies a thousand deaths.

Usually at night—In the morning it springs up again from its ashes and crows like a happy rooster.

It is never as bad as you think.

It is never as good as you think.

It is somewhere in between and success or failure depends on which end of your emotional gamut concerning its value it actually approaches more closely.

But it is much more likely to be good if you think it is wonderful while you are writing the first draft.

An artist must believe in himself—Possibly not so passionately as Lawrence—but passionately. Your belief is contagious...

— Tennessee Williams, Notebook entry for October 5, 1941, from The Paris Review 176