San Diego Playwrights

Getting San Diego Playwrights Produced on San Diego Stages

Local Flavor Play Reading of FREEDUMB by James Caputo


Tell us about yourself.

I am an actor, who became a director, who became a playwright. I find that both experiences inform my work.

In what way?

To give just a few examples: as an actor. I know how much time is necessary for an emotional swing; as a director, I know the importance of stage dynamics.  I write to accommodate such considerations.

What are your strengths and weaknesses as a writer?

I suppose dialogue is my strength. I find it a very natural thing – a flowing of the mind. My weakness is definitely plot. It is a constant screeching worry.

Speaking of plot, do you always work from an outline?

I never work from an outline. I wish I could, but it never works for me. It takes me forever to write one, and when I do I wander off of it almost immediately. It’s just not my process.  Freedumb started as a few monologues that eventually wound up in the middle of the play.  After 30 – 40 pages, a story may start to suggest itself, and for the first time, I have a vague sense of direction.

Tell us about that process, how much rewriting do you do, how many drafts?

I never look forward to rewriting, and my draft count is a few at best.  I write very slowly. I labor over each sentence, each word. I think when you do that, rewriting becomes less important. On a good day, I’m happy if I write three pages.

What are your successes?

My plays have been produced in 10 states from New York to California.  Locally, I have had full productions of four different full lengths.

What are your challenges?

Finding extended alone-time to write has to be my #1 challenge, isn’t it everybody’s?

Tell us about your play, that just had a Local Flavor reading.




Leigh Akin, Hannah Logan, James Caputo, Lydia Lea Real, Krista Feallock, J.d. Burke and Steven Oberman (Not Pictured: Joe Paulson)

Freedumb is about talk-radio and its influence on our country. At a time when technology allows us the ability to be the most informed nation, we have become the most uninformed. The play examines those people: what they believe, what motivates them. We had a great audience for the reading, and I came away with excellent notes which I am incorporating now. Thank you San Diego Playwrights and Scripps Ranch Theatre for this wonderful opportunity. And a big shout-out to my director, Hannah Logan and her excellent cast: Lydia Lea Real, Joe Paulson, J.d. Burke, Krista Feallock and Leigh Akin.

What is your next step?

Freedumb is a political play, and political plays have a very short shelf life, so the usual development path is out of the question. I will be sending it out to political theaters and posting it on the New Play Exchange as soon as possible.

Thanks for talking with us, James! Break a leg with Freedumb!

For submission guidelines visit Local Flavor Play Readings.

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