Really! This blog will be serving the role of a discussion section for this group. DeviantArt doesn't offer those, so I decided to use this blog as a substitute.
Yes, this means that if you respond to somebody's post, he can hide your responses. It also means that you can create your own posts, where you can talk about what went on in the previous discussion. What it does not mean is that a pair of squabbling members can bypassing the blocking by creating an alternating series of blog posts, each following up on the last, because that will push the other content off the screen, bore our subscribers after I set up a connection between this group and Twitter, and really, really annoy your admin. Nobody else has signed up yet, this group being only about 12 hours old at this point, so this isn't directed against anybody specific. I'm just saying, let's not even start down that path.
Writing is about everything, and plays are ... what ... narrative brought to life, so absolutely ruling out "off topic material" would be difficult, and maybe not very wise. Do we want the plays we write to be vacuous when they're not self-referential portrayals of the experience of being actors or writers? There has to be a little wiggle room, and so, I have to call on you to exercise a little common sense, instead of handing you a series of legalistically applied and interpreted rules. Know that we're often here to laugh, and almost never here to scream, so allude to your heart's content, but let the hints not be too blunt and take the political debates somewhere else.
Know that while each of us might have some degree of expertise on a few subjects, not one of us can claim any deep level of knowledge on all or even most topics and, knowing this, when speaking of subjects of relevance to your writing, and mentioning something that reasonably well educated people can't be expected to just known, try to do as we did in college, and cite a few authoritative references. Somebody's post on a message board is not an authoritative source, and neither is Wikipedia, and no, I'm not going to entertain a debate on that matter. A college professor's site is such a source, when he is writing about his area of expertise. A historian writing about history, yes. A historian writing about oil exploration, not so much. This spares the rest of us from the need to do peer review without a license, so to speak, and leaves the prolonged discussion of non-theatrical matters of tangential interest where it belongs, where it has to stay if this group is not to degenerate into a "talk about anything you want" forum.
That's enough for now, I imagine. It is now 2:50 pm my time, on an early December day that, if only infrequently sunny at all, is too pleasantly mild to be wasted, and my afternoon caffeine fix has been delayed for too long. If experience is any guide, nobody is going to join this group for at least a year, anyway, even though I have posted a comment in the group description that should tell people that I know about the default settings for groups on DeviantArt, and knew that I needed to change the settings for this group for people to be able to join - which I did. So, I'll ... what ... go enjoy my tea, and look forward to welcoming somebody in April of 2014? Something like that.
My own scribblings, for what they're worth, should find their way in a little sooner. Oh, and yes - I am in Chicago, and will, at some point, be casting brave and gracious souls who will be willing to perform on the grass, in a city park, for free, as soon as I have something worth casting them in. Not tomorrow, but eventually.