4 m, 4 w
A Small Town Newspaper Office
Rockford, CO – Present Day
Cast of Characters:
Lewis (34) – off-Broadway playwright
Tanya (33) – publisher/Lewis’ ex-wife
Bo (36) – chief editor
Nelda (39) – junior high school teacher
Nancy (59) – circulation manager
Alisha (42) – reporter/copy editor
Matt (23) – reporter/photographer
Daryl (62) – a large producing farmer
Read a sample of Mourning News – MOURNING NEWS SAMPLE
Synopsis: Recently divorced, off-Broadway playwright LEWIS GREEN visits his ex-wife TANYA in an attempt to make good on their divorce decree. However, he soon finds himself on the edge of professional peril, stuck in the middle of her hometown in southeast Colorado.
Tanya, who recently inherited her father’s daily newspaper, the Rockford Daily Informer, is trying all she can to keep the publication’s dropping revenue afloat since taking over operations. Attempting to keep the quality of writing contributed to the paper, she formulates a scheme to keep Lewis in town.
After a call to their judge, Tanya snares Lewis into paying the $96K he now owes her by reporting for her small town news rag over the next three years. Realizing he is being extorted, Lewis quickly phones his manager, trying to get the judge’s approval reversed.
Meanwhile, Lewis becomes aquainted with the paper’s colorful staff, including ALISHA, the seasoned news writer, MATT, the youthful sports reporter, and the easily annoyed BO, their editor. As his stay in Rockford grows longer, under his wife’s rule, Lewis formulates a plan of his own, attempting to get fired by writing falsehoods and insults about the town’s people.
However, Lewis’ plan backfires, as his readers find his parodies hilarious, boosting the newspaper’s advertising and subscription sales. The more outlandish the story, the more popular he becomes, except with Bo. Convicted to keep quality news in the RDI, Bo builds resentment towards Lewis, which only grows with his secret feelings for Tanya.
As Lewis continues to sink the paper with lies and inuendo, his plan is soon derailed after being assigned to write a story about NELDA, a junior high school teacher unfairly terminated for having her students read “The Diary of Anne Frank.”
The play culminates to Lewis discovering why his marriage failed, why some people prefer rural living to metro lifestyles, and most of all, news that’s important to only one town is still important enough to write about.
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