bekah brunstetter
Bekah Brunstetter I care deeply. About a lot of things. Like really, really deep. Ow
playwright in brooklyn, NY

lady vs. woman

May 11th, 2017 by Bekah Brunstetter

Part of an actor’s job is to hunt for meaning and subtext in a writer’s words. The really good and intuitive ones tend to  find something complicated and rich in your play that you did not even know was there. Naturally, it is then your job to pretend that you totally meant to put that there, so that you remain mysterious and painfully intelligent. The actor playing Della (the baker / the hero)  in the upcoming production of my play The Cake asked why  her character sometimes calls herself and other gals Ladies, and other times Women. My initial reaction was that it was just sort of a random choice, as the two are practically interchangeable. BUT ARE THEY?  Kind of not. I looked back through the script and when Della says lady, it’s more casual, colloquial, and when she says woman, she is referring more to herself or other women in the biblical sense, like a woman as wife, a woman as mother, a woman as sex.  Lady is sort of dismissive and quick, while woman has this breadth and depth, like the word itself bears the weight of the entire Role. I think this is explains why every time I hear or see myself described as a woman I feel I immediately feel like I need a better bra but also  that I should start my own business because I could but also I should be washing my husband’s clothes in the river all at once. It might be the biggest word there is. LADIES AMIRIGHT?

Posted in a lot, hmmmmm, the writing of drama plays, theater, women, words | No Comments »

those who can’t sing / write and stare

May 10th, 2017 by Bekah Brunstetter


First I loved writing stories, then poems, then plays, then movies, then TV, then emails to high schoolers who just discovered they love plays, then the occasional succinct note in Morrison’s lunch, but most recently: MUSICALS. I’m currently working on a few, workshopping one in NYC then week, and it my NEW FAVORITE THING.  I would give multiple limbs for any sort of musical talent, so writing the book for one is a way to be a part of it without reading sheet music or having vocal vibrato ever at all. It’s the most fun. It’s not easy, as the book must elegantly support the song and never draw too much attention to itself, but it’s my new favorite thing to attempt to master. THOSE WHO CAN’T SING WRITE THE BOOK AND STARE IN AWE AT THE ACTORS AS THEY SING LIKE VERY HIP ANGELS AND LIFT US ALL UP FROM OUR EARTHLY PROBLEMS AND INTO THE AIR.

Posted in a lot, how interesting, i am lucky, music, the writing of drama plays, theater, YAY | No Comments »

TOO MUCH

May 9th, 2017 by Bekah Brunstetter

I think this email I just received is a perfect example of exactly what is wrong with the (my) world right now.

WHY DO I NEED TO WORRY ABOUT WHETHER OR NOT I’M SHOWERING AT THE RIGHT TIME?! AND WOULD IT REALLY ACTUALLY BE THAT BIG OF A DEAL IF I HAPPENED TO BE SHOWERING AT THE WRONG TIME? WHY SHOULD I EVEN WORRY ABOUT THIS? WHY DID I SIGN UP FOR AN EMAIL THING THAT JUST NEEDLES INTO MY SAFE PLACE WITH ABSURD QUESTIONS? AND WHY CAN’T I BRING MYSELF TO UNSUBSCRIBE FROM IT THUS FREEING MYSELF FROM ITS CLAWS? AND ARE THESE EMAILS ACTUALLY THE REASON BEHIND MY INCURABLE DISEASE IN WHICH I TYPE IN ALL CAPS MOST OF THE TIME?

Posted in a lot, whining, worrying | No Comments »

the wee Pearsons

May 8th, 2017 by Bekah Brunstetter

Yes, the grown up actors on This is Us are lovely people, etc etc etc, but let us not forget the wee actors, too, who are all weird and charming and wonderful in their own way. Take Lonnie, who plays little Randall. My first day with him on set he decided to tell everyone it was his birthday just for his own amusement. Last night, the show won the Best Tearjerker  at the MTV Awards, and Lonnie accepted with Milo. He started his acceptance speech by saying  ‘I can’t keep pretending like this isn’t heavy.’ He then handed the giant popcorn statue to Milo to hold instead. CLASSIC PEARSON MOVE (whatever that is; I think that’s a thing. Honest; charming.)

Posted in a lot, famous people stuff, I write for television? | No Comments »

TEN YEARS / SAME FOLK 

May 7th, 2017 by Bekah Brunstetter


It’s been ten, count ’em, TEN YEARS since I finished grad school at the New School for Drama with these beautiful people (and also some other ones who couldn’t make it to the reunion, for various life reasons mostly related to babies.) I can say with confidence that we all look exactly the same despite the occasional haircut, and in fact most of us are still wearing the same clothes, confirming my theory that you are basically the same person from when you are 25 until 70 so seriously, just accept that, but also maybe get yourself a new pair of pants BUT ONLY IF THE PREVIOUS PAIR HAS DISINTEGRATED. 

Posted in Uncategorized | No Comments »

Full circle, baby

May 6th, 2017 by Bekah Brunstetter


For years After grad school, I worked as the ‘customer service specialist’ for a corporate housing company (which, I should note, I was NOT GREAT AT but it did provide me with dear friends and also material.) Cut to 10 years later, I’m back in NYC for my ten year grad school reunion, and said friends put me up in one of the corporate apartments I used to get paid to fret over and it is truly a dream. IF THAT’S NOT FULL CIRCLE I REALLY DON’T KNOW WHAT IS THO LETS BE REAL ITS MORE LIKE A SERIES OF HAPHAZARD FIGURE EIGHTS

Posted in Uncategorized | No Comments »

why I need a uniform

May 5th, 2017 by Bekah Brunstetter

Sometimes, or, if I’m being honest, ALL OF THE TIME, I spend more time than I should thinking about what I should wear to a thing. I place a lot of value on outside appearances and neglect the interior. It trickles down even to my idea of what clean is. If a kitchen LOOKS clean, it is clean. No dishes in the sink but like quiet, secret pools of old chicken juice pushed under the dishwasher. A while back, I found this letter in a box of things at my parents’ house. I wrote it to Seventeen Magazine when I was 13 or so, for a ‘tell us why you need a Makeover’ type contest.

It is so sad and horrifying that I guess it’s also a little bit funny, but I keep it a picture of it saved on my desktop to remind myself that there’s some part of me that, for whatever reason, was trapped in this shallow loop at a young age, and that now I am an adult, and I can step out of this loop and just be a person who just wears the same thing every day, a uniform over her thoughts.

Posted in ....ew, a lot, silly, vices, wanting, what i am NOT wearing, what I'm wearing, whining, women | No Comments »

why to has cat

May 4th, 2017 by Bekah Brunstetter

I keep having to go out of town, and Cracker not only notices but he cares.  He lies on my suitcase in protest with deep worry and sadness whenever I start to pack.

This is course is nothing compared to what happens when Morrison returns after being out of town for a few days.

LOOK CLOSER. THEY ARE REALLY ACTUALLY HOLDING HANDS.

Posted in a lot, animals, ha, life, love, worrying, YAY | No Comments »

FACTS (hat)

May 3rd, 2017 by Bekah Brunstetter

Everyone is wearing this hat and something about it concerns me. I support facts in all of the their vague factualness, of course, but just because you purchase and wear a hat that says ‘Facts’ does it really mean you are actually invested in the finding of them? For some people, sure, but not necessarily EVERYONE who wears the hat, especially when it’s become a cool thing worn by assorted celebrities and girls running into spin class and boys writing screenplays in coffee bars. You can pop it on your head and project political values. But does it then keep people from the doing the work  to support the values? WHAT IS BENEATH THE HAT?

Posted in factual smarts, generally, hmmmmm, politics | No Comments »

layers of Irony

May 2nd, 2017 by Bekah Brunstetter

While I’m an upstanding member of the Writer’s Guild, I can’t say for sure whether or not I actually know the definition of irony, but LET’S TRY and also WHO DOES?  For the past few months, especially weeks, there’s been a tonnage of anxiety about whether or not there would be a WGA strike come May 1st. In the weeks leading up to the potential strike, I found that I actually had no brain or emotional space to worry, as I was too busy re-writing a movie based on The Secret. I gave pretty much NONE mental energy to the strike, and in fact, I convinced myself it wouldn’t happen. CUT TO 1 AM LAST NIGHT, when the WGA negotiators reached a tentative agreement with the Producers. No Strike. DID I JUST IN FACT USE THE SECRET TO AVOID A POTENTIAL WRITER’S STRIKE WHILE WRITING THE SECRET?

Posted in a lot, hmmmmm, how interesting, i am a grown up, i am lucky, I write for television?, LA angst, words, working | No Comments »

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