The first story I wrote for public consumption beyond my parents and coerced friends was a play.
The summer between my freshman and sophomore years of college, I combined my favorite elements of the novel Frankenstein, the 1931 film of the same name, and a bit of Bride of Frankenstein, plus plenty of fully original material, into a full-length script. (My mom recalls hearing many a hot, late night the beep-beep my Smith-Corona word processor made for every word not in its dictionary—and the play included the word "Frankenstein" a lot.)
Like Frankenstein's "monster" itself, my story was a patchwork.
So I called it Frankenstory.
Nineteen years ago today, it debuted at Brandeis University. (Three days later, it closed. As planned.)
Meet the original 1992 cast:
Frankenstein would not have said his monster was one of his greatest creations; its imperfections frustrated and then scared him so deeply that he spurned it.
My little play—which, all told, consumed a year of my life—had plenty of imperfections, and trying to stage it was scary at times, but it will always remain among my top five most personal projects, no matter how many books I ultimately write.
And despite the review from the student newspaper. Smiley face.