I have just finished reading Bill Ballantyne's article "Writing a Play." The entire article can be found at http://www.scene4.com.
A few sentences that caught my eye and may be the point to start discussion of this piece that attempts to explain what (but not how) playwrights do:
"A play essentially, is an event. An event is an occurrance in which something actually happens."
"Playwrights create an event....The defining principle, however, remains at center: something must happen....Our words are not designed to be read, they are designed to be performed, carried into effect. We are not writing literature... we are making an experience."
"A good play makes no judgements, nor offers up solutions. There is no "solution" to life. Life is strange and erratic and difficult and uncontrollable. Things rarely come out even. The purpose of drama is to remind us of that...."
Thanks Billy. Hope to get a short play festival underweigh here next year and this will be a great piece to put, particxularly younger writers, on the track. Must confess I didn't know of the existence of the Ezine. It's now firmly in my favourites list.