Read My Newsletter

Home Page of Jonathan Dorf, playwright, screenwriter, teacher and script consultant

Happy new year! (Yeah, I'm a little late.) Hope your 2018 is off to a great start.  And now...

Want to read my newest play? It's a ten-minute parody, Great Expectations, or What I Did On My Summer Vacation, and it's recently been published by YouthPLAYS as part of Lit on Fire, a collection of a dozen parodies of reading list classics. But it's yours to read for free as a member of my email list! Just email me with your full name and organization and I'll send you one!

It was a blast working with the students (and their awesome drama teachers) of Lompoc High School (Lompoc, CA) and Westmont High School (Campbell, CA) on their co-premieres of Me, My Selfie & I. The play in a few lines:

We live in a world of social media, one in which we seem to be recording our every experience. But are we making memories or missing out on them? Through a series of scenes and monologues—everything from an accidental first date to a most unusual art exhibit to creating that last, best selfie—we meet a group of teens who are struggling to find the balance between documenting their lives and living them.

Dramedy. 40-50 minutes (with the flexibility to remove scenes for running time). 2-20+ females, 2-20+ males (6-40+ performers possible). Available through YouthPLAYS here!

Me, My Selfie & I at Westmont High School (Campbell, CA; photo by Brandon Thomas)

My complete playwriting course in a book is ready to help you with plenty of no-nonsense, practical advice and lots of writing exercises. Pick up your copy from YouthPLAYS today! And if you enter coupon code JONSLIST through 2/28, you can save 20%!

Want to study with me online? My next Introduction to Playwriting class through Screenwriters University begins tomorrow (which may be today by the time you read this), February 8. It's not too late to sign up!

Best of all, why not bring me to your school or conference in person? I love doing guest artist visits, so if you'd like to know more, email me and let's talk! (I'm also available for virtual instruction via Skype, as well as script consulting.)

Speaking of conference visits, in recent months I taught workshops at Arizona Thespians, Pennsylvania Thespians, Kansas Thespians and the Texas Educational Theatre Association's TheatreFest. Upcoming, I'll be teaching playwriting (and occasionally screenwriting) workshops at Alabama Thespians (Feb 22-23) and California Thespians (Mar 29-30), so if you're at one of these conferences, stop by and say hello!


As you may know, I
 have many, many plays that are well-suited for schools and youth theatres. Everything from wacky one-act comedies like Just Add Zombies and Harry's Hotter at Twilight to thoughtful "dramedies" like 4 A.M., After Math, Dear Chuck, The Magic Hour and Rumors of Polar Bears. For a complete listing of my "teen favorites,"
click here! Need recommendations? Just ask me!

Me, My Selfie & I at Lompoc High School (Lompoc, CA; photo by Bree Jansen).

In honor of the publication of Me, My Selfie & I, this one is called "M.I.A." Lizzie, a teen girl, talks about a friend who has completely cut off contact with her for reasons she doesn't understand.


So let’s say you have this friend. Dana. Yeah, let’s call her Dana. You’ve known her since you were in kindergarten, and maybe she’s not your very best friend, but she’s pretty high on the list. Like if you’re in a play, she always comes. Well, except for that time she had tonsilitis--and you go to her Science Olympiad, which is pretty huge considering you’re sitting there for hours not understanding anything. But then summer comes, and I’m away, and she’s away, and then...she’s gone.
I text her and she doesn’t text back. I figure she’s still away, but I try again three days later--which takes incredible willpower--and still nothing. “R U OK?” Nothing. At all.
(As Dana’s voicemail:)
“Hi, this is Dana, you got me-don’t got me--leave a fat, juicy message.”
(As herself leaving a message:)
Hey, Dana--it’s me. Everything good?
(No longer leaving a message:)
And then I Facebook stalk, but we’re suddenly not friends. What?! And her Instagram [or social media platform of the moment] has selfies of her and her dog and some randos and the last one is from yesterday, so what just happened here? It’s like we...stopped. Dana, I’m not sure what’s going on, but if I like did something--
Nothing. And I know she’s out She’s got this whole series of dog selfies and I try liking and then even commenting. She likes all the other comments, but for some reason she’s just decided that I don’t exist. What did I do? And I’m replaying everything over and over trying to come up with a clue, something...
And fall comes, and she’s not back at school, but apparently she’s bought a cat, and some people are kind of in touch and it hurts that I’m not one of some people, but there’s nothing I can do about that. And I start to think, maybe it’s not about me. I still don’t understand why somebody would do that, but maybe it’s time to stop trying to find out.

Did you know that my website has monologues and scenes that are free for classroom or audition use (like the monologue you just read?!)? Now you do!

Click here to become a fan on Facebook!

Click here to follow me on Twitter!

Click here to follow me on Instagram!

More soon, but before I sign off, I want to send some extra love to all of my fellow Californians affected by the fires and/or the mudslides that followed. Hang in there.


Co-Chair of the Alliance of Los Angeles
, member of The Dramatists Guild of America, and life member of the Philadelphia Dramatists Center.

Final Draft Resident Playwriting Expert and author of

Resident Playwriting Expert of The Writers Store.

Recent News
World Premiere!!!
Me, My Selfie & I co-premiered at Lompoc High School (Lompoc, CA) and Westmont High School (Campbell, CA) at the end of September. This one-act with a flexible cast introduces us to a group of teens as they struggle to find the balance between documenting their lives and living them. 
Take My Online Playwriting Course!
Want to study playwriting from the comfort of your home, workplace or anywhere at all?  In Introduction to Playwriting, you'll get all of the basics of playwriting and be well on your way to writing a new play, but you don't even have to get out of bed if you don't want to!  Look for a new session this summer.  Get more information and enroll here:
The Midnight Club is Now Published!
Read a sample of my latest play, the short comedy The Midnight Club, my teen monster-themed homage to the classic John Hughes 80s film. It's now published by Playscripts as part of a new collection, Scared Silly!
Playwriting Webinars!
Now available for purchase, two great webinars from yours truly! Each is nearly 90 minutes and packed with info (with a PowerPoint too!):
Playwriting 101:  Everything You Need to Know to Write a Play
Writing Plays for Young People: How to Write for the Biggest Market Nobody Knows About

Upcoming Productions
The Magic Hour
Viking Theatre (Rock Hill, SC), February 2018
Dear Chuck (one-act version)
White Knoll High School (Lexington, SC), February 2018
4 A.M.
Thurso Players (Caithness, United Kingdom), February 2018
Dear Chuck
Hardee High School (Wauchula, FL), March 2018
Me, My Selfie & I
The Young Creatives (Portsmouth, Hampshire, United Kingdom), March 2018
Me, My Selfie & I
Berkhamsted School (Berkhamsted, Hertfordshire, United Kingdom), March 2018
High School (non) Musical
Montrose Area School District (Montrose, PA), March 2018
Dear Chuck (one-act version)
Fremont High School (Plain City, UT), March 2018
Thank You for Flushing My Head in the Toilet and other rarely used expressions
Del Valle High School (Del Valle, TX), April 2018
Dear Chuck (one-act version)
H. Hardcastle School (Edam, SK, Canada), April 2018
From Shakespeare with Love?
Bad Theatre Co. (Asuncion, Paraguay), May 2018
Me, My Selfie & I
Woldingham School (Woldingham, Surrey, United Kingdom), May 2018
Pepperoni Apocalypse
St. Helen Catholic School (Georgetown, TX), May 2018
High School (non) Musical
Coakley Middle School Drama Club (Norwood, MA), June 2018
After Math
Pope John Paul II High School (Hendersonville, TN), November 2018
Stay tuned...: I've got multiple play ideas I'm developing. See what appears first...
Plays for Production
Free Monologues
Young Playwrights 101
Script Consulting
About Me
Connect With Me
Starting out as a writer? Get help by clicking here. You'll find playwriting instructional tips, links to young playwrights contests, sample query and cover letters and even a suggested reading list!
Can't figure out why your script isn't working? I can help. For a reasonable rate, I will give you detailed feedback to get your project back on track.

Click here for information.