Entries by Alan Godwin

August 17, 2018

Dear Drama Observers, I’d like to say a few things about the tension between winning and principles… but first let me tell you a story. As Larry King once said before marrying his seventh wife, I’ll try to keep this short. My dad dropped me off at college one Sunday night to begin my freshman […]

August 10, 2018

Dear Drama Observers, People lie for many reasons. I’ll occasionally hear someone tell me, “So-and-so is a pathological liar,” but a closer look would suggest that so-and-so is not so much a pathological liar as a pathological conflict avoider. Saying what’s true might cause conflict so a lie is told to dodge the tension. But […]

August 3, 2018

Dear Drama Observers, I’ve always been taken with Samuel Clemens (1835-1910) who is best known by his pen name, Mark Twain. He was a prolific writer, but he was also a pioneering observational humorist. No one else thought to comment on the hilarities of everyday life. He was to his era what, say, Jerry Seinfeld […]

July 27, 2018

Dear Drama Observers, Have you ever had that experience of reading or hearing a term that you sort of knew what it meant but weren’t quite sure? You were familiar with it, but since it’s not part of your everyday vernacular, the term’s meaning was a tad obscure. Faustian bargain is one such term for […]

July 20, 2018

Dear Drama Observers, If you’ve been reading this weekly missive for a while, surely you’ve noticed a recurring theme of mine—the confusion that surrounds Drama People. I saw a client for the first time recently and she described her Drama Person in a way I’d never heard before. . . But I liked it. “It’s […]

July 13, 2018

Dear Drama Observers, A common topic of discussion these days is civility . . . or its lack thereof. Things do seem to be getting worse [see: “Congressional Hearings, 7/12/18”] and perhaps that’s right. Or maybe it’s always been this way but we’re now more readily aware of it, what with the rise of social […]

July 6, 2018

Dear Drama Observers, There’s so much in the news these days about civility—or its lack thereof—that I had planned to say something about it in this week’s letter. But alas, given the revelry of vacation, it’ll have to wait. Instead, I’d like to post something called “The Porcupine Dance” which is actually the first chapter […]

June 29, 2018

Dear Drama Observers, I’m on vacation this week so I decided to send you a “Best-Of” edition of The Drama Review. I’m concerned that referring to one on my letters as a “best-of” might sound a tad egotistical. Which doesn’t really worry me though because I’m re-running one that wasn’t written by me but by […]

June 22, 2018

Dear Drama Observers, In my early teens, my parents sent me to a North Carolina summer camp where we could see Mount Mitchell, the highest point east of the Mississippi. Mount Mitchell majestically looms at 6684 feet. I grew up in a state where the highest elevation is 806 feet. . . I was duly […]

June 15, 2018

Dear Drama Observers, For several years now, I’ve traveled and conducted seminars about manipulators or what I refer to in this letter as Drama People. That’s a pleasant little topic, no? Manipulators are nothing if not perplexing. The mental discombobulation they generate often elicits numerous hard-to-answer questions. For example: I would never do something like […]