Short Plays and Monologues



Look at that.  Short Plays and Monologues is sandwiched right between Shakespeare and McDonagh.  I’ll take it.

“Seven short plays and monologues written by award winning West Virginia playwright Jonathan Joy. Included is the “Write like Mamet” award winning script “The Gentleman Caller” and “The War on Halloween” and other pieces that have been successfully staged in West Virginia, Ohio, Minnesota, Texas, North Carolina, California, and New York City.”

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Writers Can Read event at Pullman Square

Today, in honor of World Day of Theatre for Children and Young People, I’ll be reading “Buck vs. The Great Chili Monster” at Empire Books. And in honor of World Poetry Day, I’ll be reading a porchsittin’ poem. And since it’s almost Root Canal Awareness Week (a real thing), I plan to perform painful tooth surgery on one lucky audience member/fellow writer. So come down and join the fun tonight 7:00-8:30 at Empire Books in downtown Huntington. And bring something to read, share with the group.

Eliot Parker organizes these Writers Can Read events once a month and it’s a great way for writers and lovers of literature to meet, share, discuss ideas.  I’m looking forward to being a part of it.

Scentsy Spirit at the WSAZ Home and Garden Show


That’s a lot of Scentsy in my Kia.  To see what kind of great deals are inside these boxes, check out my wife’s booth at the WSAZ Home and Garden Show this weekend.


And this is what it looked like, all unpacked and on display, a few hours later.  Hard to believe this is Rissie’s sixth year at this awesome event.  It’s her biggest of the year.  And there’s a popcorn vendor, so I’m set…and a petting zoo for Levi to play in.  Let’s do this!



Wrestlemania Plans?

wrestling pic2

Since I was ten years old, I had dreamed of being the Intercontinental Champion, and for that one moment in that one Big Lots, I was.  United States Champion by my side.

I was tempted, but I didn’t buy either one of these belts.  They were about twenty bucks each.  When I was a kid (oh my god, have I really started using that phrase?)  I would make my own championship belt out of some spare cardboard and markers.  Then, I’d wear it down to the mound in the Vegas’ field and defend it in a match against any one of three or four different friends.  Sometimes I’d win.  Sometimes I’d lose.

True story.

Levi’s First Theatre Review

little mermaid

What’s below is a theatre review Levi and I wrote together two and a half years ago.  I thought of it on a recent trip to Huntington High School to see a wonderfully colorful and energetic production of The Little Mermaid musical.

I published this on facebook originally, but didn’t save a copy anywhere else.  Thankfully, Chuck Minsker posted it on his Tri-State Theatre blog ( and I was able to find it there.  Thanks, Chuck.


Let’s get a review from a theatre newbie (and his much more experienced dad), as local playwright Jonathan Joy joins forces with his three-and-a-half-year-old son Levi to review “Superman:”

(Jon notes that this review contains SPOILERS regarding the preshow.)

Jon: Did you like the play?
Levi: Uh-huh.

Jon: What was your favorite part?
Levi: Spider-Man. (Spider-Man makes an appearance during the preshow and my son is a huge Spider-Man fan.)

Jon: Did you like the singing and dancing?
Levi: Yes.

Jon: Did you like it when Superman was flying through the air?
Levi: Yes. 

Jon: Do you want me to take you to see more plays?
Levi: Yes!

He also talked quite a bit about the ninjas and, upon returning home, proclaimed at least six times, “It’s a Bird! It’s a Plane! It’s Superman!”

He thoroughly enjoyed it.

He was also a big fan of the bathroom at Huntington High School, as we made at least five trips in just under two hours.

He did have one suggestion. He thought Iceman and Firestar should have also been included in the preshow. (Big thumbs up for including one of the Incredibles, though.)

I was a bit concerned halfway through the first act when he asked to leave, but it turned out he just had to go to the bathroom. Each time we went to the bathroom he said, “We better hurry. Superman is going to be very angry.”

Nice job, First Stage! Thank you very much!


Okay, back to present day now.  On our recent The Little Mermaid trip, Levi only made one trip to the bathroom and was thoroughly engaged for every bit of the show’s two and a half hour length.  (The popcorn and Sprite helped.)  If that’s not a testament to the fine work Helen Freeman and her students did, I don’t know what is.  I tried conducting a similar interview to concoct another review, but he only shared that he really liked the show, all the characters, all the songs, etc.  (He didn’t want to pick any favorites.)

In short, congrats Huntington High School on a fine performance.

2 or 22 votes

In Kentucky Presidential Caucus news (local edition), Sen. Cruz won Greenup County by 2 votes. So when we’re all saluting our Trump overlord in a year or so, you can’t blame Greenup County.

Trump won Boyd County, home of Ashland Community and Technical College, by 22 votes (out of almost 2,000) over Cruz. At the bottom of the results ladder, Ben Carson got 2 votes total. So I almost tied Ben Carson, which is pretty impressive considering I didn’t spend anything at all. I did tie Jeb Bush, an accomplishment I’ve already added to my resume and the annual report I submit to my employer.

In another county near and dear to my heart – Elliott County – Trump scored a 2 vote win over Cruz.  (Out of 39 votes total.)  What’s most amazing about this is the discovery that there are 39 Republicans in Elliott County, a county that at one time had a Democratic registration of well over 90%.