I have tremendous affection for New York and my life, but I'm a satirist at heart. And it's easy to satirize New York.

Because I'm an American woman, and I write straight plays, it's always been sort of assumed I would never be done on Broadway. But that was never the goal.

Some people think big audiences are crass and that, say, a comedy that appeals to a wide audience is pandering. Other people would argue that you could say that about Moliere.

You have to respect who the character is. It has its own internal truth, and you can't betray that. And if you don't betray that, it will not betray you.

Why is being a female having an agenda any more than being a misogynist - which David Mamet most certainly is?

It's sort of a mystery where ideas come from.

I am curious about a lot of things. I'm perplexed and engaged.

Obviously, a theatrical masterpiece needs more than a plot; many television shows are nothing but plot, and it is doubtful that they will stand the test of time. But I also don't think that making fun of plot or acting like we're all somehow 'above' structure is such a good idea.

The audience just doesn't care. They are just as interested in women-centric stories as they are in stories about men.

In the theater, there's an emphasis on the singular voice. You know, it's your play. And in television, there's so much institutional involvement. So you end up having to negotiate with a lot of people, and that provides a kind of wear and tear on the spirit.

Honestly, the thing that I have found to be most useful over a long career, or maintaining a long career, is taking back the power at some point and self-producing.

I sincerely believe that for the New York theatre to remain relevant, all our major producing institutions should be presenting new American plays.

My son is a musician who next year will be attending the LaGuardia High School of Performing Arts in New York City, which his mother helped him get into by making him practice all the time.

That stupid postmodern emphasis on image over content has slammed us right into a dramaturgy that willfully leaves the audience behind and then resents the fact that they don't 'get it.'

I write a lot because, if I don't, I start to panic, and I calm down when I write.

When I go to Ohio to visit relatives on holidays, I am often astonished by the level of casual dismissal offered up by way of discussion.

I like working with television. I do.

In America, the average playwright makes less than a receptionist in a non-profit theatre. We don't have decent health insurance - or any health insurance at all.

I'm an impatient person.

I actuall have to defend realism in theatre because I think TV does it badly - so corrupted by layers of bureaucrats who want to leave examination or psychology.

It's one of the central problems of American culture: telling you if you're younger, more beautiful, more famous, whatever, that then you'll be happy.

When people tell me I'm a prolific writer, it's a nice thing to say. But I think to myself, 'Yeah, but I don't do anything else.'

I work hard. I like getting to the end of things. And I write my plays that way.

I think new plays are vastly more surprising and challenging and inspiring; I hear from audiences all the time that they are delighted when they see plays about the world we live in now, at this moment.

Spielberg read the 'Understudy' and decided that was the voice he wanted to write 'Smash.' He wanted a story that had humanity and humor and high-stakes dreams.

I actually think we should be trying to be rigorous in our thinking about television and the way it enters our lives and shapes the way so many people think.

Is the American theatre allowing itself to become irrelevant? The problem isn't that playwrights aren't being paid enough. It's that theatres all over America are looking towards New York to tell them what new plays to do.

We have this powerful ideological basis to the country that I don't think any other country in the world quite can brag about. It's a very complicated nation, and it's very fertile.

Denver's commitment to giving contemporary storytellers the stage is crucial to the American theater. That's something embraced by 'Smash.' We should be telling our own stories.

So in case there was any doubt, I am here to report that having a play on Broadway does not suck.

I'm not afraid of just cranking it out and seeing what comes out of my subconscious. Because I don't always know what I'm feeling. I do a lot of rewriting later. But that first blast feels like a spigot - like it's coming from somewhere else.

We need theatre that is contemporary, lively and relevant, and the only way to do that is to take care of our playwrights and produce their plays.

I go to museums. I buy art, even. You should see my house; we don't have any wall space left.

Why on earth is the 'New Yorker' publishing puff pieces about pretty girls who go to parties? Does the 'New Yorker' ever run photos of cute boys just because they're cute and they come from money and they go to lots of parties?

I was born and raised in the Midwest, where people were taught that decency and integrity and community were all important values. We were democrats with a little 'd.'

In television, what you are doing is trying to fit your voice into a particular mold.

We were told that hard work and talent and character would get you somewhere. At school, we learned it was important to share. On Arbor Day, we all planted trees.

Art is great. At its best, it engages the intellect and challenges the spirit; it connects us across history and reminds us of our humanity.

I have always worked consistently, even in small ways and even in smaller theaters where I'll do One Acts or something.

Show business is a struggle. I certainly wish that I had just blasted on the scene and not had quite such a hard time. But there's a great sense of the relief in that you don't have to prove yourself anymore.

New York was the Promised Land growing up. Writers were gods! The great gods of American culture... I thought.

Sometimes I feel that my job on earth is to put Julie White through horrible things, watch her writhe and then recover.

Rarely do I try to pull a creature out of life and make it a character.

I had such a good experience doing 'The Understudy' with the Roundabout, and people were really enthusiastic about the work.

Our distorted media culture sees men as subjects and women as objects; in films, Woody Allen gets older and older and still dates 20-year-old babes; movies about women are called 'chick flicks,' and men make fun of them.

It's not my responsibility to write plays about the way the world should be.

I see how the Midwest distrusts the East Coast. The Midwest sees itself as morally superior. The Coast sees itself as intellectually superior. And the two are actually the same thing.

Generally, what I try to do is always have a money gig and an art gig.

There's a thing that happens to Midwesterners - we spend a lot of time talking about having a different set of rules about manners. I don't know about ethics, but certainly about manners, what you would say and what you wouldn't say. And that is not very East coast.