How to Write a Play: Letters from Augier, Banville, Dennery, Dumas, Gondinet, Labiche, Legouve, Pailleron, Sardou, Zola
The Floating Press
Publication date: May 2009
Digital Book format: ePub (Adobe DRM)
An education is likely to take the dramatist a great deal of time - unless he is so fortunate as to be a genius. Perhaps the main difference between the play-writing genius and the rest of us is that he can associate but briefly with audiences and know it all, whereas we must spend our lives at it and know but little. I have never happened to hear of a genius of this description; but that is no argument against the possibility of his existence.
As to the talented authors of these letters, they know excellently well - every one of them - how to write a play - or did while still alive - even tho some of them see fit to deny it; but they cannot tell us how to do it for the very good reason that it cannot be told. Their charming efforts to find a way out when cornered by such an inquiry as appears to have been made to them are surely worth all their trouble and annoyance - not to speak of their highly probable exasperation.