One thing this acting business is teaching me is to truly enjoy the journey, both figuratively and literally. The road to being a working actor is filled with ups and downs, so you have to appreciate the hustle and the struggle as you try to achieve your goals, even if you don’t quite succeed, or at least not on the first try.
After finishing my blog post on Friday, I got a request for a self tape. I had submitted Thursday night and it was filming Saturday afternoon, so time was of the essence. When I never heard back from them, I was okay, because it gave me more time to prepare for my agent meeting. I checked out the agency, chose the perfect outfit, rehearsed my lines with other people, made lists of why they would be lucky to sign me, questions I wanted to ask them, etc.
By Sunday morning as I drove to Toronto, I was ready. My phone was also stocked with nerdist podcasts, which were pivotal in the literal part of enjoying the journey, since I spent over 12 hours in the car that day. As for the meeting itself, my destination…it was kind of bittersweet. It started out with them looking over my resume, asking about my experience and how long I had been without an agent. I thought it went well, and then we did the scene that they had asked me to prepare. I was completely off book, and wasn’t thrown by having to do it sitting instead of standing, since I had practiced it both ways (the swivel chair was slightly disconcerting, but I think I managed it well). I thought we would get into my questions at that point, or at least discuss how it would work if they represented me, but instead they thanked me for coming in and the meeting was over. Since this wasn’t an audition, it wasn’t like they were going to call me with their decision. If they had wanted to, they would have either signed me then, or given some indication that they would be sending me the paperwork to look over or something.
I had spent the day driving and was no closer to having an agent, but as I drove home, I did not see it as a waste. I had thoroughly prepared for that meeting, and even if I didn’t get to use it, I still had all my answers and questions ready for my next agent meeting. I got interview experience and would be less nervous next time.
It wasn’t until Monday that I started to feel slightly defeated. I had so many things planned for this week, once I would no longer have to stress about the agent meeting, but I found myself making plans and schedules instead of actually doing anything, which is what I do when I am not happy with where I am at. Finally, after supper I decided to do some research on headshots and tips for finding the right outfit. Eventually, I ended up on Ms in the Biz, and after reading her headshot advice, decided to read an article by a girl whose picture I recognized from Bonnie Gillespie’s group. The article was called “Ready or not, Here I Come!” and from the first few lines, I recognized myself. I often spend more energy finding excuses for why I am allowed to not do something than it would actually take to actually do it. Not to mention you feel awesome after going to the event in question, and super guilty if you don’t. Or at least I do.
The actress’ name is Sarah J. Eagen, and after loving that article, I decided to check out her website. Starting from her first blog post up to the one she had posted that very day, I read them all. So many of them resonated with me. It was like I could have written half of them, because I had gone through the exact same struggles, or felt the same, while others were exactly what I needed to hear, in general, and yesterday specifically. Discovering her site was the best thing that could have happened to me last night, because instead of wallowing again today, I woke up and started working on 100 day challenges and preparing myself so I would be ready if I got an amazing part/audition/agent meeting for next week. If ever you also find yourself needing some acting inspiration, check out: www.sarahjeagen.com 🙂
“No excuses. Tomorrow, what will I wish I had done today?”
-My new daily mantra, thanks to Sarah J. Eagen