Every summer, the island of North Haven — specifically, its Waterman’s Community Center — stages a theatrical show, showcasing and entertaining both summer people and year-round residents. This year’s is a world premiere musical — but its subject could not be more local.

“On Island,” written by critically acclaimed novelist, short story writer, poet and screenwriter Susan Minot, plays four days only and likely will be sold out by its Thursday, Aug. 2, opening. But it is intended to have a longer shelf life.

“Waterman's commissioned it, and for the next couple of years, Waterman’s and I will share the rights,” said Minot shortly before arriving, well, on island for the summer. “It's got a large cast, but it's very adaptable, so other communities in other places in New England or Maine might be interested.”

The two dozen-plus characters could be played by a smaller ensemble of actors, although the premiere will fill the stage at curtain. Like the vignettes they present, the characters are a mix of locals and summer residents (one of the latter is director Lily Thorne’s husband, Josh Hamilton, who stars in the new film “Eighth Grade”).

Minot’s qualifications for creating “On Island” are strong, even aside from her bestseller (“Evening,” “Thirty Girls”) writing chops.

“Since I was a child, I've been spending every August there with my large, bustling family and then in 2000, I moved there full-time. I married an islander and lived there for the next nine years and then moved back to New York just for the school year,” she said.

As part of her island engagement, Minot is on Waterman’s Drama Committee, which decides the summer show each year. A couple of years ago, there was discussion of doing something akin to “Islands,” the Cidny Bullens-scored original musical that went from the Fox Islands to New York City in 2001.

“And, you know, David Hopkins said, wouldn't it be nice if one of the writers who happens to be on our committee would want to put this together? And I've always loved theater and putting on plays,” Minot said.

In fact, she has written a play. “Little Locksmith,” based on the memoir by Katharine Butler Hathaway, was suggested by Vinalhaven’s John Wulp (who has a play of his own in revival off-Broadway this summer). He directed Linda Hunt in the solo show on North Haven in 2002. But “On Island” is a very different work — and different from the writing Minot is known for.

“My sort of inclination is to sort of go for the personal and the smaller and capture kind of the nuance of a place,” she said.

Sense of place is indeed captured in “On Island,” but it is mediated through a large number of characters — and it takes place during a single day on North Haven.

“I came up with the idea of doing a play that would be community-friendly that a lot of people could act in it,” Minot said. “I liked the idea of just zeroing in on a slice of life in the life of the town.”

She started by exploring the summer vs. year-round dynamics she knows from personal experience. The ferry figures large, as it does on an island — who’s arriving when; when’s the next boat; who’s the stranger who came to the island by mistake. There’s a summer family “bickering about where they're going to go on a picnic and who's going to inherit from the grandmother.” There’s a three-generation year-round family that runs a boat operation.

“And there's a birthday party and … you know, I really tried to pack it all in,” Minot said.

And then there’s music. Minot loves musicals, but she’s not a musician, so “On Island” is seasoned with existing tunes that reflect and comment on the plot. The show also features original songs by local singer/songwriter/actor/music teacher Courtney Naliboff and music of Fox Islands trio Toughcats.

“And we have Bill Trevaskis doing the sound and the music, and the wonderful David Wilson doing set design and the visuals. Lily Thorne is directing … we work very well together,” Minot said. “This'll be the third time the four of us have worked together.”

The set is simple, abetted by artist Wilson’s projections. Getting a cast together at any given time is not so simple in summer, especially in such a Vacationland mecca as North Haven. Minot specifically wrote “On Island” in a format that would allow smaller groups to rehearse at various times. The first week of August, however, everyone will get onboard together.

“I know North Haven so well, how the productions go and that challenge,” Minot said.

In fact, she was on the Waterman’s stage herself last year, as one of the readers of “Summer,” a one-act play for voices she wrote, inspired by her work on “On Island.” A Virginia B. Toulmin Foundation grant supporting female playwrights helped make both productions possible … and both share a through line.

“It's about appreciation of the island,” Minot said.

“On Island” performances are Thursday through Saturday at 7:30 p.m.; and Sunday at 1 p.m., Aug. 2 through 5, at Waterman’s Community Center, adjacent to the ferry landing. Ticketing is via brownpapertickets.com.