Quarantine yields creative outlet for Mass Bay instructor Dr. Ted Eaton
Posted by Babs Mountjoy
The quarantine times have given many of us the opportunity to try new things we may not have had time for, once upon a time. Author and college professor Edward Eaton, known to colleagues as “Dr. Ted,” has branched out from his regular classes by starting two series of YouTube videos, one on assorted writing topics, and the second on Haiku Reviews.
The idea was based on a suggestion from his provost at Mass Bay Community College, he says, but “they have taken on a life of their own.”
Eaton holds a PhD in Theatre History and Literature, and has worked extensively as a theatre director and fight choreographer, most recently for the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Theatre Shakespeare Ensemble. He has been a theatre critic, and has a background in playwriting.
The videos on craft are not only directed to his students at the school, but they are for anyone, he says.
“If you are interested in Literature and film as a consumer, it might be nice to understand how the pieces are put together. If your interest in film is deeper or even professional, it might be nice to know that the ‘three-act’ structure is not the only one. So far I have mostly been playing with Aristotle–though there were two other videos that touch on related topics.”
Eaton said he plans to do several more videos on Aristotle, and then move on. “I want to share this information with people who have an interest in theatre and writing and want a good solid overview of the subjects.”
He specifically works through examples people will find it easy to relate to, such as Romeo and Juliet, Star Wars and more.
The Haiku Reviews came to be in specific reaction to other reviews he found online.
“I’ve gone on Youtube to look up movies to see what people think about them only to be stuck with 30 minutes (or more) of commentary. Sometimes it can be interesting, but usually I start yelling ‘Strunk and White!’ at the TV. ‘Get to the point and move on!’”
But it wasn’t just those. “When my kid was little, I would ask him about what he was reading or watching. He would go into such detail that I would get exhausted. At about the same time, I was asking students to write book reviews. Four-fifths of their papers would be synopses. So I started writing and sharing (with students and my boy) a synopsis of a book or a film in the form of a haiku.”
His format of three haikus that cover story, analysis, and judgment is different than others he’s seen. “(Those) reviews included a haiku and then commentary–like a comedian explaining his or her joke. I’m not going to explain my little haiku, unless the pictures I choose help.”
During his Covid-19 quarantine time, he’s also learned “how much fun it can be to play around with PowerPoint.” And he’s excited about the new creative ways he can reach out to readers.
“Absolutely. I had these ideas before. However, without the quarantine, I doubt I would have bothered to start my Youtube videos. Maybe I would have done the Haiku videos, but not for a while.”
His current Haiku videos include The Caine Mutiny, The Hobbit, Amadeus, the Magnificent Seven, and more.
Edward (Ted) Eaton has studied and taught at many schools in the States, China, Israel, Oman, and France. He is also an avid SCUBA diver and skier. He currently resides in Boston with his wife Silviya and son Christopher.
Publications include: Young adult series titles ROSI’S CASTLE • ROSI’S COMPANY • ROSI’S TIME, and drama titles ELIZABETH BATHORY • GIANTS FALL • HECTOR AND ACHILLES • Orpheus and Eurydice (2010), all from Dragonfly Publishing. See all at his Amazon author page.
For more information, check out and subscribe to his YouTube channel, or see Dr. Ted’s website: http://www.edwardeaton.com/Edward_Eaton/Welcome.html
Posted on May 31, 2020, in book, guest author, Uncategorized, writing, writing craft, video, young adult trilogy and tagged Edward Eaton, Elizabeth Bathory, guest post, Haiku Review, Lyndi Alexander, novel, reviews, Rosi's Doors, stage fight choreography, Uncategorized, writing, YouTube. Bookmark the permalink. Comments Off on Quarantine yields creative outlet for Mass Bay instructor Dr. Ted Eaton.
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