Read Through: The Leaves of Evelyn

Some time ago I attended a creative writing class in Cardiff chaired by the novelist and short story writer, Tessa Hadley. She tasked us to come up with an idea for a story on the spot. I can't quite remember the requirements since it was like four years ago, but my idea was this: what if there was an old guy who's wife has died and he projects all of his unresolved grief and residual love onto a household plant?

I thought people were going to be intrigued but they weren't. Needless to say, I believed in my Kafka-esque, Beckett inspired masterpiece and years later I've realised it as a full-length script!

But in all seriousness, I have spent a lot of time on this idea since that class, developing the characters, piecing together the story - with a little biography here and there - and learning to professionally write a script by reading others and so forth. I've also held two readings, which have added to the several redrafts that have taken place. The second reading is featured below with acting students from the Italia Conti Academy of Theatre Arts. I hope you enjoy it and feel free to comment and share your thoughts!

Sam Cleal