Pat the Dog invites you to join our “Bake Off”!
(*No sourdough starter required)

What is a “Bake Off”?

Originated by playwright and teacher Paula Vogel, a bake-off is a quickly written exercise on an assigned theme with assigned elements that folks do within a 48 hour period of time. It is a reaction to plays and works of art that are responding to another writer or artist, preferably centuries apart; the bake-off continues this conversation.  When the 48 hour time period is up, groups of participants gather (in this case, digitally) and read the bake-offs!


Our bake-off will take place over 48 hours between May 16th and May 18th.

What is the theme?

Paula Vogel has created a special “COVID Bake-Off” theme that we will follow.

Part 1. Read  La Ronde  by Arthur Schnitzler, if you have time.

We will steal the plot construction that Schnitzler uses: the pattern plot, or repetitive form (Event A, Event B, Event C, Event A, Event B, Event C), which is the sequencing form of the virus itself replicating. But Schnitzler also uses a hybrid plot form: the play itself makes a circle, i.e. the circle plot where the end is the beginning.

Rule #1. You must begin and end in 48 hours.  You will be assigned to a group of 3-7 others who will write their bake-offs in the same shared 48 hours, and then share their bake-offs.

Rule #2. You may not rewrite.  After the bake-off you have all the time in the world to turn it into a full length or one act play, a novel, a poetry anthology etc.!

A fishmonger in a market place in Wuhong
A couple coding in a cafe in Dublin
An opera singer in Milan
A writer in solitude in (wherever you are writing this bake off)
a discarded face mask
cotton swabs
a soliloquy from a pangolin
The fishmonger’s granddaughter plays in the marketplace in Wuhong as her mother reopens the family food stall.

How to Join

Anyone is welcome to join the bake-off – you do not need to be a playwright or a theatre artist! Just e-mail by  Thursday May 14th to let us know that you’re interested, and we will send you more information about the theme, the rules, the “ingredients”. We will also assign you to a bake-off group of 3-7 people that you can keep in contact with throughout the 48 hours, and with whom you will share your bake-off.