Howie's Last Words is in the collection Guilty Moments from Original Works Press

by Arthur M. Jolly
Cast: 1w, 1m.
Running time: 15 mins.


A stuntman returning home late, still reeling from a close call.

Howie's wife has been waiting for his return, becoming increasingly worried.

A bedroom.

A stuntman, home late after a fire stunt that went disastrously wrong, confronts his wife who wants him to quit.

About Howie's Last Words

Drama, 10 min, 1w, 1m

Greg Weiner and Shana Youngblood
Greg Weiner and Shana Youngblood in the 2005 premiere at the Miami Summer Shorts Festival.
Directed by Barbara Lowery.

In HOWIE'S LAST WORDS, Howie comes home after a fire stunt. He's late - and he had a close call: the valve on the air tank jammed, and he started hallucinating from the lack of oxygen. His wife, already worried out of her mind, demands that he quit, but Howie's unwavering even if it kills him... again.

Why this play?

This was my very first play. I had been writing short stories, and I saw a call for submissions to the Miami Summer Shorts Festival for ten minute plays. I'd never even considered writing a play. I saw the notice and thought "Ten minutes? I could write a ten minute play." Luckily, I had the good sense to pick something I knew (stuntwork), choose the most dramatic moment of my life as a basis - the fire stunt that goes wrong in the play is absolutely true to my experience, including the hallucinations that resulted. Luckily, it was accepted from over 850 submissions, or perhaps I might never have written another. A couple of months later, I was watching my first ever play on stage in front of an audience of 300, sandwiched in between Paul Rudnick's Pride & Joy and Colin Mitchell's The Leap. Feeling the audience response all around me clarified what I wanted to do in my writing and in my life... and any time I think I might like to go back and do more fire stunts, I read this play. You should too!

Sample Dialogue...

Howie's Last Words