I started this website July of 2015, with the goal of reading all of Shakespeare's plays in a year and writing about them. The project was initially conceived as a bit of intellectual headspace for a newly unemployed stay at home parent. It slowly morphed from low-key pretense at academia to a place where I told stories about what was happening in my life/head, all spurned on by reading plays by a man who's been dead for 400 years. Many of these self-reflections helped me to figure out what was going on in my head, sort of a cheap form of therapy. I learned so much in that first year -- namely, how to find success in failure.
So here we are, another year later, and I'm still not finished. In fact, my output slowed a lot this second year on the project. There are all kinds of reasons for this, and I can easily point to my hectic life as the cause (HR contract projects, increased volunteer work, shuttling the kids around in their ever-busier schedules, my recent decision to pursue my masters). But it's slowly begun to dawn on me that I'm actually sort of stalling. I don't want to say goodbye to this project. I've been dragging my feet because I don't know what I'll write about when it's over. Because, until recently, I didn't really know what I wanted to do next in terms of career or pursuit outside of my family. I've made good friends and life decisions as a result of working on this project, which never really had an intended audience. But for those of you who have checked it out (even just to peek in and run away when you see how long each post is), please know how much that support means to me.
Here's what I accomplished this second year:
- 11 total plays read and written about (4 histories, 4 comedies, 1 tragedy, 2 romances)
- 154 sonnets read and written about
- 7 new (to me) films (TV miniseries included) viewed (2 of which were recorded live performances from renowned Shakespeare troupes, which leads me to...)
- 2 theatre troupes streaming services discovered
- 1 post about Shakespeare that was not a review/commentary on the plays
- 1 book read that was inspired by Shakespeare (The Gap of Time)
- 5 live plays attended, 3 of them with my young daughter (The Winter's Tale, Othello, Twelfth Night, As You Like It, and Hamlet - 3 of these plays I'd already covered, so I didn't write about the performances for the blog)
- 2 kiddie productions attended, 1 in which said daughter performed (Hamlet, Julius Caesar)
- 1 sonnet performed (again!)
- 1 audition for a local Shakespeare company, plus a call back! (I did Constance from King John)
- 1 hilariously anachronistic TV show watched, inspired by Shakespeare's life (Will on TNT)
- 4 books about Shakespeare purchased but not fully read (in the works!!)
I will reach that finish line. And I'll read these plays and watch them long after the project is over. I'm just grateful for how much it continues to give me. And for all of you.