“Go With The Flow”: Monday, October 13th
Stories about accepting reality and not fighting it, river stories, and even stories about female menstrual cycles.
“Train Wreck”: Monday, November 3rd
Stories of terrible disasters or accidents and wild ways of folks who really need to get their life in order.
“Outside The Box”: Monday, December 8th
Stories about thinking differently, unconventional wisdom, and yes, shipping!
“Slippery Slope”: Monday, January 19th
Stories about dangerous pathways, skiing, sledding or snowboarding, and situations that spiral out of control.
“Two Peas In A Pod”: Monday, February 9th
Stories about siblings, best friends, or lovers. Don’t discount the possibility of a great story about farming or cooking peas!
“Writing On The Wall”: Monday, March 16th
Stories about situations where imminent doom seems unavoidable, kids writing on the wall, or any type of writing snafus.
“Happy Camper”: Monday, April 20th
Stories about camping, outdoor adventures, summer camp, or unconventionally happy people.
How Can I Participate in Oral Fixation?
To submit your story for consideration, please read this information carefully then fill out the following form in its entirety for producer Nicole Stewart.
What are the Requirements for My Submission?
Your story must be true, have happened to you, and must be between 1200-1500 words in length. If your story does not exhibit an obvious and direct connection to the theme, it will not be considered. It is advised that you write a piece specifically for a theme that speaks to you as opposed to attempting to tailor a piece you’ve already written to fit in with one or more of the themes. Neither poetry nor songs are acceptable submissions.
What are you Looking For?
We are most interested in tales of transformative times of life: times when an event or series of events changed you. You were one person before and became someone new afterwards and that difference is still with you today. As far as tying in with the theme, we’re looking for either a literal or a figurative take on the theme. See below for suggested takes on each theme. We love stories that are funny, thrilling, horrifying, exhilarating, embarrassing, sexy, poignant, bold, raw, revealing, and any combination of the above. The show is generally R-rated so avoid profanity unless essential and feel free to include the raw truth on matters of sex, drugs, and violence.
What do you Suggest as far as Story Structure?
The most compelling stories possess a clear beginning, middle and end. In the beginning, share the context of your life before the story happened. Remember that YOU are the main character of your story (yes, please tell it in 1st person) and that your character must be developed. Don’t assume the audience knows anything about you. We need to understand who you were (and where and what you were doing) before the event or series of events began so that we relate to you and root for you as you move through your journey. Along the way, let us in on why you made the choices you did and how you were thinking and feeling at the time. Dialogue can be a useful tool. In the end, reflect on how you have changed because of your story. Let us in on where you are today and why this story remains significant to you. Stories are most often told in chronological order, but that is not a requirement if you are inspired to create an alternate structure.
What Kind of Tone is Appropriate?
The medium of writing personal nonfiction for the stage needs not be poetic or formal. Rather, your story should read in a way that sounds authentically YOU as if you were telling a dear friend about a time in your life they don’t know much about. Allow your personality, sense of humor and point of view to show through your writing.
What is the Editing Process Like?
Your submission will be considered a first draft. It is the story itself, its connection to the theme, and your ability to submit a story appropriate to the topic that is considered most heavily. If you are accepted, then you’ll go through an editing process to pull forth the truthiest, juiciest parts of your story and get you ready for the stage. This involves a couple of thirty minute video conferences with Nicole Stewart during which she will ask you probative questions designed to stimulate your memory and flesh out the most relevant details of your story. In between each session, you’ll be expected to apply the notes given to you into an updated draft. Your draft will be finalized by the Friday before the Saturday rehearsal. It must read aloud at approximately 8 minutes.
What Happens at Rehearsal?
At the rehearsal, you’ll meet the other storytellers, get acquainted with the space, receive training on how to best perform your story and get a chance to read your story aloud both for time and for notes on your delivery. On the night of the show you’ll read your story from the page.
How Do I Pick a Show to Submit For?
See which you respond to instinctively. There are a few ideas listed with each theme, but feel free to come up with your own unique take. Then strap yourself to a chair and spit your story out onto the page- sometimes this is the hardest part so turn off your internet connection, put on some music and/or light a candle, and dig into your memory to mine the best, most relevant parts of your life experience that resonate with the theme you selected.
When Do I Submit?
Submissions may be sent in well in advance. You are encouraged to strike when the iron is hot- when inspiration finds you. But note that casting won’t be finalized until the dates listed under submission deadlines. In other words, if you submit a story in October for the March theme, don’t worry if you haven’t been notified one way or the other until late February.
What is the Time Commitment?
In addition to the 2-3 thirty-minute editing sessions over the three week period after you are cast, you’ll need to set aside time for working on your revisions (allow 2 hours each for 2-3 revisions). You’ll be expected to rehearse your story on your own by reading it aloud several times before the group rehearsal. Then you must attend the two-hour mandatory rehearsal the Saturday before the show (exact time and rehearsal location will be stated in your acceptance package). Finally, you will be expected to be at the venue from approximately 5-10pm on the night of the show. Be sure to confirm your availability for both the performance and the rehearsal before submitting.
“Go With The Flow”
Submission Deadline: Friday, September 19th @ 6pm
Casting Announced: Monday, September 22nd @ 6pm
Rehearsal: Saturday, October 11th from 12-4pm @ Wyly
Performance: Monday, October 13th @ 8pm @ Wyly
Submission Deadline: Friday, October 10th @ 6pm
Casting Announced: Tuesday, October 14th @ 12pm
Rehearsal: Saturday, November 1st from 12-4pm @ Wyly
Performance: Monday, November 3rd @ 8pm @ Wyly
“Outside The Box”
Submission Deadline: Friday, November 7th @ 6pm
Casting Announced: Monday, November 10th @ 6pm
Rehearsal: Saturday, December 6th from 12-4pm @ Wyly
Performance: Monday, December 8th @ 8pm @ Wyly
Submission Deadline: Friday, December 12th @ 6pm
Casting Announced: Monday, December 15th @ 6pm
Rehearsal: Saturday, January 17th from 12-4pm @ Wyly
Performance: Monday, January 19th @ 8pm @ Wyly
“Two Peas In A Pod”
Submission Deadline: Friday, January 16th @ 6pm
Casting Announced: Tuesday, January 20th @ 12pm
Rehearsal: Saturday, February 7th from 12-4pm @ Wyly
Performance: Monday, February 9th @ 8pm @ Wyly
“Writing On The Wall”
Submission Deadline: Friday, February 20th @ 6pm
Casting Announced: Monday, February 23rd @ 6pm
Rehearsal: Saturday, March 14th from 12-4pm @ Wyly
Performance: Monday, March 16th @ 8pm @ Wyly
Submission Deadline: Friday, March 20th @ 6pm
Casting Announced: Monday, March 23rd @ 6pm
Rehearsal: Saturday, April 18th from 12-4pm @ Wyly
Performance on Monday, April 20th @ 8pm @ Wyly
To submit your story for consideration, please read the DETAILS tab thoroughly then fill out the following form for producer Nicole Stewart.
Be sure to include the show for which you’d like to be considered. You may submit for multiple shows, just send separately.
*Please note: All Season 4 shows are on Monday evenings at 8:00pm at the Studio Theatre at the Wyly with a four-hour mandatory rehearsal the Saturday afternoon prior from 12:00-4:00pm. Be sure to confirm your availability for both the performance and the rehearsal before submitting.