Other Literary Forms
Though known primarily as a playwright, Marsha Norman began her career as a journalist, writing a number of highly regarded feature articles and reviews of books, plays, and films for the Louisville Times in the mid-1970’s. During this same period, she created and edited that newspaper’s celebrated children’s weekend supplement, “The Jelly Bean Journal.” She has continued to write reviews as well as articles on playwrights and on women’s issues. Her first novel, The Fortune Teller, appeared in 1987.
Norman has adapted a number of her works for television and film. Her film version of ’night, Mother appeared in 1986. Her teleplays include adaptations of The Laundromat (1985) and Getting Out (1994). This success led to other work for television: A Cooler Climate (1999), about an unlikely friendship that develops between a wealthy Maine woman named Paula, just separated from her husband, and her just hired housekeeper Iris, a once-wealthy divorced woman. Especially popular teleplays include Custody of the Heart (2000), based on a book by Barbara Delinsky, about a successful woman sued for custody of her children and her much publicized Audrey Hepburn Story (2000), a somewhat sensationalized life of the actress.