In Real Life

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Dramatists Play Service, Incorporated, 2005 - Drama - 52 pages
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After graduating from drama school in Chicago, Charlayne Woodard, a young African-American woman, eagerly packs her bags and heads for New York City to live with her white boyfriend and pursue an acting career...she's cast in the original company of the hit Broadway musical Ain't Misbehavin'. IN REAL LIFE cannily chronicles Charlayne's initial seduction into the thrills of stopping a show as well as the physical and emotional price of sustaining the energy to do so night after night.

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About the author (2005)

I was born in Washington, D.C., on New Year's Eve, 1952. A younger sister followed about twenty-two months later. I had a happy, normal childhood in every way. Although shy and quiet in my early years, I began to get a little rebellious in my teens -- but nothing far out of the ordinary.

"The only thing unusual about my life was that I was born with a hearing loss, inherited from my father's side of the family. From childhood through my twenties, it was a moderate loss, and I was able to attend public schools (where I took lip-reading lessons) and go on to college with few problems. In my mid-twenties the loss worsened and, by graduate school I needed a hearing aid. When I was in my thirties my hearing really deteriorated, and I took a job at Gallaudet University and began to learn sign language. I've never let it hold me back from doing the things I wanted to do. I just adapt and go on.

"I'm not sure when I first thought about being a writer. I've always had 'a way with words' and took a few stabs at writing a novel when I was in my twenties, but I never finished -- perhaps because I did not have enough life experience to bring it to a satisfactory conclusion at the time. I put it off and pursued other things -- a brief marriage, my career, traveling around the world, photography -- but the desire to write was always in the background, and although my career as an editor was progressing fairly well, I realized it wasn't what I wanted to do for the rest of my life. So I took another stab at writing.

"This second attempt resulted in Sisters and Lovers, which sold 105,000 hardcover and 325,000 paperback copies, and is being made into a television miniseries. Sisters and Lovers appeared on the bestseller lists of the Chicago Tribune, Washington Post, Boston Globe, Boston Herald, USA Today, and Publishers Weekly.

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