Okay, so I’m totally stealing an idea from The Nervous Breakdown right now – the Self Interview. I’ve always fantasized about being interviewed – the person doing the interview changes depending on my current state of mind and obsessions, but they’ve spanned the spectrum from James Lipton to the ladies of The View. I have a sick mind sometimes.
What I’m really fantasizing about, in reality, is being INTERESTING enough that people actually want to hear what I have to say and hear my story. Silly, silly Chelsea.
So maybe this self interview will get it out of my system for a while.
Do you ever Google yourself?
Nope…never…how egotistical do you think I am anyway, geez. (silence) Okay, fine. I do. So shoot me.
Have you done it recently?
Actually, in preparation for this interview I did a Google image search and a picture of me in New York is the third in line after a pic of a pretty actress and a track runner. And then there are about a dozen press photos I’ve taken for various shows I’ve been involved with around LA at the Falcon, Sidewalk Studio Theatre and the Eclectic. So I totally DOMINATED that image search. That’s kinda neat.
How do you feel about “Google” becoming a verb?
I love it. I actually think people will start naming their kids Google pretty soon…unless Google has bought the rights on that sort of thing already. How would it feel to be sued over something your parents named you? It would be like the English football club suing me for using “Chelsea.” In college, the brilliant Jessica Fleitman and I wrote the first episode of what was supposed to be a serial theater show called “The Secret Location of Useless Things” (a name we FORCED to make sense since I liked it so much) – it took place in the future and one of our characters (a teenage boy) was named Google. I’m pretty confident we’ve started a trend…which people just don’t know about yet.
Speaking of writing…what is your relationship with sea monkeys?
I’ve never owned sea monkeys. I’ve always had real pets. My mother has always enjoyed keeping a minimum of three critters running around (dogs, cats, miniature ponies, pot-bellied pigs, turtles, fish, rabbits), and then repeatedly proclaims, “It’s a freakin’ zoo around here!” I don’t know if that’s supposed to be ironic or what. My guess is not. But with sea monkeys being a prominent subject (and character) in my upcoming play, I should probably buy a box of sea monkeys and see how it goes.
Now that “99 Impossible Things” is in good enough shape to move forward, what is your next writing project?
First, I need to work on the script for the holiday cabaret I’m doing at ECT in December. But beyond that, I’ve given myself the next six weeks to finish the draft of what will be my first novel, “Apt”, finish a treatment/outline of my first screenplay “Out of Focus”, and finish drafts of two full length plays (both of which I already have semi-rough drafts of) “The Dead Woman” and “Game Night” – both of which have mostly female casts. I also have a new blog in the works (which will be way better and more focused on a particular topic than this one). Too much? Maybe. But I don’t have time for excuses.
Lakers or Celtics?
The Office – UK or US?
While I love the more subtle horror that is the UK version, I really have a soft spot for Steve Carell. The man can do no wrong.
Traveling has become a prominent desire for you in the recent year – what are your next hopeful trips?
My friend Rebecca and I have tentative plans to drive to Yellowstone National Park and camp there for a week – which should be ultra exciting if it actually happens. Rebecca wants me to ride horses while I’m there…but I’m not so sure about that. It should be a nice trip before I disappear into a theater vortex starting in October until my play opens in January.
Any other trips you want to go on?
I want to go on a trip across America – not a road trip per se, but one where we use public transit and maybe a rental car or two to get where we want to go. I also want to backpack across Europe, which may seem random to people, but I feel like I somehow missed the boat on that, since most people seem to do that right after college. I, however, got a job. Boring. There are also a few retreats to Taiwan and China that I came across yesterday that I suddenly would really love to do (and they’re relatively inexpensive). All of these trips, of course, will last no less than a month…so apparently the idea of short term travel is evading me. But I’ll find it again.
What are you reading right now?
A Prayer for Owen Meany and The Martial Way and It’s Virtues. Both amazing, but taking me forever to get through.
Do you have a favorite quote?
I’d say just about anything Kurt Vonnegut ever said, including: “I urge you to please notice when you are happy, and exclaim or murmur or think at some point, “If this isn’t nice, I don’t know what is.” – Kurt Vonnegut
But also, a quote from the TV show Dr. Who: “When you’re a kid, they tell you it’s all… grow up. Get a job. Get married. Get a house. Have a kid, and that’s it. But the truth is, the world is so much stranger than that. It’s so much darker. And so much madder. And so much better.” – Elton Pope, Dr. Who “Love and Monsters”
And also: “You gain strength, courage, and confidence by every experience in which you really stop to look fear in the face. You must do the thing which you think you cannot do.” – Eleanor Roosevelt
That last one is really inspiring me to move forward on a lot of projects I have in mind.
Star Wars or Star Trek?
I have to say Star Wars just because of Han Solo. But Star Trek did have Whoopi…
Where would you like to be right now?
By the ocean. Drinking a margarita.
Finally, what is your idea of success?
Being able to do your work with your whole heart, to be able to do some good in the world while being happy yourself. To have true pride in your work. Being with those you love – knowing both what it’s like to be crazy in love and to have a love that is sustainable. To make enough money to keep you comfortable and free but not greedy. To see the world and experience how others live – learning to be sympathetic and kind at all times. Kindness and honesty are often overlooked as important qualities – but I believe they are both important to live a good life and to have meaningful relationships. Too much time is wasted by not being honest and direct. And too much pain is caused by defining success based on other people’s definitions or resumes.
What about sarcasm?
Oh, that’s important too.