The wonderful Stayci Taylor was in residence at the Urban Writing House in July, non/fictionLab’s space for all things research, writing, and the city. Stayci is a screenwriter and playwright, whose creative practice PhD project (female perspectives in comedy screenwriting) is, at the time of writing, under examination. Stayci teaches screenwriting at RMIT, and is currently in development with the New Zealand Film Commission with a feature film comedy screenplay. Her TV credits include 10 seasons of an award-winning bilingual serial drama, and a prime time sitcom, both in her native New Zealand. Stayci’s research interests include script development, gender, comedy, creative writing practice and celebrity studies. Among her publications are the journals Senses of Cinema, New Writing and TEXT.
Stayci says: “Time in the Urban Writers House seemed far too good an opportunity to squander on a PhD, but this could not be avoided. Lists grew on the blackboard, filled with serious intent. I was freshly back from overseas and, adjusting to a Melbourne July; I wrote in fingerless gloves and a beanie, eschewing both when practicing yoga beneath the looming lists. I’m a seasoned procrastinator but the seclusion proved productive despite me – a solitude broken only by the welcome visit of Peta Murray and Mattie Sempert, during which we composed our bonkers journal submission (peer reviews pending). The surroundings, the rolling skateboards outside, and the design of the UWH (if I were a Block contestant, I’d call it something convoluted like Industrial Urban Scandi): it all inspires. This meant that, as the week progressed, the call to writing something creative pulled me from my scholarly endeavours. My ongoing efforts to trouble screenwriting conventions were aided by a newly found and timid excursion into nonfiction. The resulting piece (for non/fictionLab’s Spotlight) – raw as it is – sees the most of myself that I’ve put on a page for quite some time.”