ALMEREYDA: What was your sense of identity as an artist at that point? Were you just biding your time?
SHEPARD: No, I mean, I was writing all the time, so I wasn’t waiting for anything. I think a part of the reason that those early plays were short was that I just kept having these ideas and I’d just go off and write them. I wasn’t trying to write one-act plays—it’s just how the ideas would be expressed. Every condition I was in seemed like it could be a play. Everything seemed like a possible play.
ALMEREYDA: It seemed like it was a time when the whole culture was kind of shaking itself awake.
SHEPARD: It was also a bit scary. I mean, people talk about the 1960s in a nostalgic way, but to me it was terrifying. People were getting assassinated. There was Vietnam. There were race riots. It felt like everything was going to get blown up sky-high. It didn’t feel like flower power. It felt like Armageddon.