"How different would people act if they couldn't show off on social media?" - Donna Lynn Hope
I've only been living in Los Angeles for six weeks now, and I've already worked on Grey's Anatomy, Secrets and Lies, How to Get Away with Murder, and an exciting new show debuting in October called Crazy Ex Girlfriend. I've done scenes with Terry O'Quinn, Juliette Lewis, and Sarah Drew, among others. I was accepted into the UCB Improv School and signed across the board with a very well respected talent agency, Media Artists Group.
Here's the truer version of the above paragraph...
I've been living in the Los Angeles area for six weeks now, and I've only been able to secure background work. Anybody with a driver's license and social security card can do what I've done. My blurred image will be seen behind the mentioned actors, but I certainly didn't "do scenes" with them. Aside from some inconsequential small-talk, I didn't even interact with any of them. UCB doesn't hold auditions to get into their classes. They hold fees. I paid the fee.
The agent part is true, and while I'm excited to have representation already, I owe it completely to a connection I had.
I've always been one to highlight the thorns over the roses. So be it. I have nothing against positivity -- I'm really trying to improve mine -- but spinning things in order to get shallow Facebook comments of "You're a superstar!" or "So proud of you!" or "PTL" is just not my bag, baby. Truth be told, I've unfollowed plenty of peers who lack any sense of self-awareness and realistic assessments of what they've accomplished.
So let me just get this off my chest: I've accomplished nothing. I'm nowhere near where I want to be. I don't deserve praise or accolades for anything on my resume or IMDb page or, God help us all, YouTube.
When and if I ever do feel like I've accomplished something in Hollywood, I'll be sure to brag about it all over Facebook. But I'll be sure to be secretive about several details so I can get the much-desired comments of "Tell us more!" or "Can't wait to hear all about it!" or "You're a superstar [even though I don't have any clue what you're talking about]!".
Some people. Right?
Look, I'll admit that I've actually enjoyed my background work. As I've always said to my real Industry friends, the worst days on set are still alright. I've actually been treated pretty well for the most part, aside from one PA who was a distant relative of Satan. How she gets work is beyond me.
The food is always good. I meet good people. I see the pros doing their things. I make almost enough money to buy a tank of gas.
I wouldn't have these opportunities in Minnesota, so I'm thankful to be out here. Not exactly living the dream, but I feel closer now than I did before we moved.
September 3, 2015
"This hill goes on forever!"
Says I when I run in the hills overlooking the Santa Clarita Valley.
"It's a good burn!"
Says I when I near the top.
"What? That's NOT the top?"
Says I when the road winds around a corner and my muscles turn to undercooked cheesecake.
"Stop talking to yourself."
Says I when people give me weird looks.
So I'm here in Los Angeles(ish). Actually a little north. But only a half a podcast away from the places I need to go. Well, the places I hope to need to go.
But as I laid out in my first post nearly seven years ago, my journey was never specific to geography. So while I've technically made it to Hollywood from Minnesota, I am still a long ways away.
But I'm closer than I was seven years ago. Seven months ago. Seven weeks ago. At least I hope I am.
I've still got a lot of big hills to climb, metaphorically and literally. Seriously, running in my neighborhood is brutal. If nothing else, living out here is going to get my quads back into shape.
I can vouch for the views at the top of the hills. They're amazing. Dry. But amazing.
So as I continue to climb uphill, I remind myself that the view from the top is worth it.