Year of Graduation
Mothers & Daughters is my thesis play written after five years of coursework in the Hollins Playwrights Lab, from 2015 to 2019, and two years of writing over the course of four years, 2019 to 2023, due to some medical setbacks explained herein.
My first draft of the accompanying narrative essay was a (comparatively) compact 2000 words outlining the lessons I had learned about playwriting at Hollins and my process for writing this play. Todd Ristau, the Director of the Hollins Playwrights Lab and my first reader, wanted more and gave me both permission and motivation to do exactly what I wanted to do in the first place: tell my story of becoming a playwright, to mix in the biography of my journey while also objectively analyzing the tools that Hollins gave me along the way.
The result is a heftier nearly 15K word essay that serves both as a personal narrative and an examination of the development of a playscript that brought a lot of attention to Hollins and the playwright that wrote it — and which served as inspiration, even if at first unconsciously, for the work that followed.
It is this writer’s hope that, should some future reader stumble across this thesis essay and playscript, they will come away both with a deeper understanding of how Hollins develops theater-makers and perhaps to draw encouragement for their own growth.
McCord, Sean, "Mothers and Daughters" (2023). Playwriting (MFA) Theses, Hollins University. 8.
The purpose of the MFA in Playwriting thesis is to provide a definitive record of student progress upon completion of the degree. This text will not reflect any revisions to the play made after degree completion. For the most current version of the play, or for licensing information, please contact the author and/or the Hollins Playwriting Department.