|Donald Payton wrote his first play, "Bobbysox," as a teen fresh out of high school. He submitted the manuscript to Heuer Publishing, having noted the company's name and address from a cast copy of a play he appeared in during high school. The family-owned company took a chance on the unpublished playwright and the play became a hit.
What inspired Mr. Payton to try his hand at playwriting? - "An early fascination with live theater," he recalls. "I attended a small Missouri high school, there were just 12 in our class, and extracurricular activities were limited. I landed a role in our all-school play as a sophomore and from the moment I appeared before a live audience I was hooked!"
Upon graduation, the curtain appeared to close on Donald's acting career. But his interest in theater never waned. He thought about writing a play, even roughing out plots and putting words in mouths of imaginary characters. One day he stretched matters "slightly" by telling his former drama teacher he had written a play. "Good," the teacher said, "Maybe we can produce it." So Donald had no alternative: that weekend he sat at his old typewriter and wrote "Bobbysox." "Now write a couple more and we'll have an evening of Payton plays," the teacher said. The rest, as they say, is history.
During a 30-year administrative career at Southwest Missouri State University, his alma mater, Donald continued to write plays; was a popular columnist for a local newspaper; and wrote for numerous publications. Recently, Donald Payton was chosen for the inaugural Wall of Fame at SMSU. He resides in southwest Missouri with his wife, Charlene. Donald's writings take the audience through an amazing journey of excitement, cheer and surprise.|
|Plays by Donald Payton with Brooklyn Publishers:|