Donna Hoke offers page-by-page script analysis and career coaching for a reasonable fee. If interested, please inquire at


June 7th, 2020 donnahoke


Welcome back! If you’re still here and haven’t subscribed, please take a second to do so at the right.  Thank you!


Short and sweet this week as I finish the utility scene I started last week. This week, I have to put the girls on the road, though I realize that since they aren’t hitting the road until 45 pages in that this may not be exactly a road play. If it were, I think they would have needed to get going much sooner, like by scene 2. They may have three scenes away from home, but maybe that’s not enough to constitute an actual road play. I don’t know… I’m going to be needing to put in some heavy writing hours this week to figure some of this stuff out. Messy middle. Bear with me.



And now, let’s join FINDING NEIL PATRICK HARRIS, already in progress:


He's Back: Neil Patrick Harris to Host the 2013 Primetime Emmys ...


KATIE: It doesn’t: every time you make a plan, you change your mind. Completely expected.



CHA-CHA  (stung): My plans aren’t supposed to be funny.



KATIE: No, they’re just a joke.



CHA-CHA: It’s just not the right time.



KATIE: You said it’s all about time!



CHA-CHA: Even a broken clock is wrong most of the day.



KATIE: I was serious when I said I only wrote my sitcom to practice being funny but if you’ve got five, you’re serious. And if we don’t find NPH, okay, but maybe using Tonio as a reason to get out there is what you need to give it a shot. And if I’m willing to do this–



CHA-CHA: Did you fall off a fucking rutabaga truck?



KATIE: What?



CHA-CHA: You don’t just march out to Hollywood and push your script in someone’s hand. That’s not how it works.



KATIE: But if you don’t even–



CHA-CHA: You have to know people. Don’t be stupid.



KATIE: Don’t be mean. I just thought–



CHA-CHA: I don’t have five pilots, okay?


KATIE: How many—


CHA-CHA: None.


KATIE: …You lied?


CHA-CHA: [shrug]


KATIE: But you gave me titles–



CHA-CHA: I’m good at titles.












CHA-CHA: I wanted to be better than you. I didn’t know Tonio was gonna fucking die and call my bluff.



KATIE: You could have said two. Two would have still been better than me.



CHA-CHA: Five is a funnier number.



KATIE: How do you know things like that?



CHA-CHA: Instinct.



KATIE: Like the unexpected thing?



CHA-CHA: No, my father taught me that.



KATIE: So if you have instinct, then maybe–






CHA-CHA goes back to work cleaning the basins. KATIE goes back to her computer, types a little.



KATIE: Oh my god…



KATIE opens her bag and slaps the plastic bag of ashes on the table.



KATIE: What about Tonio? Was that all bullshit? Did we act like crazy people putting ashes in my purse for nothing?



CHA-CHA: I wouldn’t call learning about a rare avian disease nothing.



KATIE slams the bag again and it breaks and ashes spill on the floor.



CHA-CHA: Shit.



KATIE: Between the ones on the carpet at Tina’s and this, there’s not going to be anything left to fling on NPH.



CHA-CHA: Which doesn’t matter, because we’re not going to California.


KATIE: Exactly right.


CHA-CHA: Glad that’s settled.


KATIE: We’re going to New York.



CHA-CHA: Unexpected but still not funny.



KATIE: No really. They live in New York. I can’t believe I didn’t know that.



CHA-CHA: And you call yourself a fan.



KATIE: We’re going.



CHA-CHA: Why? There aren’t even TV producers in New York.



KATIE: If we don’t go, then Tonio’s dream dies.



CHA-CHA: Dreams die every day.



KATIE: How often do you have a chance to make one come true?



CHA-CHA: I have my own dreams to worry about.



KATIE: What are they?



CHA-CHA: I’m not telling you.



KATIE: Where do you want your ashes flung?



CHA-CHA: I never fucking thought about it.



KATIE: Me either. But maybe that’s something a person should know.


See you next week for scene 8!




(Click on the home page to read about my plays!)

–Please follow me on Twitter @donnahoke or like me on Facebook at Donna Hoke, Playwright.

–Playwrights, remember to explore the Real Inspiration For Playwrights Project, a 52-post series of wonderful advice from Literary Managers and Artistic Directors on getting your plays produced. Click RIPP at the upper right.

–To read #PLONY (Playwrights Living Outside New York) interviews, click here or #PLONY in the category listing at upper right.

–To read the #365gratefulplaywright series, click here or the category listing at upper right.

–For more #AHAinTheater posts, click here or the category listing at upper right.


3 Comments on “EPISODE 13: FINDING NEIL PATRICK HARRIS, A Play In Process”

  1. 1 Tony Schwab said at 8:50 pm on June 8th, 2020:

    Maybe the pilot Cha wants to write and the one Katie wants produced is the play we are seeing. Maybe the road trip is them trying to move down the road of life. They may never leave the salon! But they are moving.

  2. 2 Bill Crouch said at 12:54 pm on June 9th, 2020:

    Cha-Cha: “Unexpected but still not funny” great line…I laughed out loud, which I needed after three months of being a Pandemic shut in. LOVE THIS PLAY.

  3. 3 Lynda said at 11:36 am on July 13th, 2020:

    Love that there were not five pilots. That Cha is just good at titles. Love the switch to New York….

Leave a Reply