When I was nine, my eleven-year-old sister came home, full of news from her field trip to the county courthouse. Her favorite part had been the withered, creaky-drawled judge entrusted as their guide through the judicial system, or what passed for it in Texas.
Yes, Texan Justices float. We all float down here.
When asked about the weirdest experience of his career, he related one trial where the defendant had become so enraged by the testimony of the key witness, that he jumped up from his seat, tackled her in the witness box, and bit off her nose. In his words, my sister gleefully reported, “it sounded exactly like he had taken a bite out of an apple.”
I was already no stranger to the importance of sound in telling a good story: while seven, reading to my indulgent grandmother, I had asked for a glass of water not because I was parched, as she suspected, but to speak through it during  one crucial passage. I also had a passing understanding of Foley work, and knew the Golden Age of Radio had both its triumphs and its liabilities.
It wasn’t until I moved to Chicago, however, that I saw Foley work employed in a theatrical production. Repeatedly. Well. With clarity, cleverness, and cohesion, augmenting the storytelling in a delightful way that would stay with the audience not only while living their own kitchen sink dramas, but while making lunch in those same kitchens.
So imagine my own delight when I was invited to play with WildClaw for the first time last year, as the third member of their Foley team on Deathscribe 2011.
Which paled in comparison to my excitement this year, as a new company member, reading our semifinalist submissions and preparing for a knock-down, drag-out, Thunderdome debate amongst my awesome peers to decide, of the 25 that entered, which 5 may leave. It was great to learn about my co-company members’ tastes, defend my own, and explore together not only what we find scary, but funny, sexy, and to what end.
It took nearly three hours, four filibusters and lots of snacks, but we ultimately winnowed down nearly one hundred contenders to an evening of 5 deliciously unique tales of terror, helmed by 5 of Chicago’s best and bravest directors.  We will reveal this year’s selection of scary scribes this Saturday, September 15th, at our Clockwork Nightmare Benefit.

Our benefit? Why yes, it’s this Saturday! And not only are we revealing the dark delights that will make up Deathscribe 2012, but we’ll have great music, awesome entertainment, sinfully good food, and a silent auction featuring one-of-a-kind adventureslocal events, and art and jewelry from talented artisans from across the country.
I hope you will join us for this unique evening of scaring and sharing, benefiting the only theatre company in Chicago dedicated to bringing horror to the stage!
Because one of you may get inspired to write a script featuring a nose-biter. I have just the thing.