Friday, August 25, 2006

My $50 Experiment - Part Deux

An agent. I need one.


Knowing that is the easy part.

The hard part is in obtaining one. A GOOD one, that is.

That brings me to "My $50 Experiment - Part Deux", in which I'll be shelling out another (fairly large) sum of money to snail-mail query letters to agencies in the hopes of gaining representation.

It's not exactly as if I hadn't though of doing this before. I have. I just knew (then) that I wasn't ready.

All right. I'm a big enough person to admit it was my WORK that wasn't ready. But, through sheer effort, time, and exhaustive ... oh, cut to the chase already!

I've written, re-written, and RE-re-written enough pieces to the point in which I feel they are finally marketable. Apparantely, so do others, because one of them made the top 10% at Nicholl, and received "consider" status from a coverage company.

I'm good at writing. What I am not good at is marketing - myself, that is. And, therefore, I need a champion; someone to go out there and help me fight the good fight.

I may now have steel balls, but they are not cannonballs!

I hate doing cold calls.

Haaaate it! (Insert Jim Carrey's voice here)

When I get on the phone to market my work (and myself), the "Fight or Flight" syndrome takes over and I automatically begin hyperventilating. What I sound like, I can only imagine, but I know it ain't good. And, in order to be believable and come across as a true professional, you must sound good.

You'd think that 20-odd years of acting experience would be helpful. Right?

Yeah, well, I thought so, too. But, I was wrong.

I know I'll still need to get out and market...well, ME, but I figure it will be somewhat less painful knowing there's someone else out there who's rooting for me, even if it's only to get their 10%.

Saturday, August 19, 2006

My $50 Experiment

Okay. I admit it. I'm frustrated. No, not THAT kind of frustrated, thank you very much. Frustrated in the "I've had my worm out there forever, but the fish aren't biting" kind of way.

So, I decided to bite the bullet and part with a bit of cash. $50 to be exact.

The target? InkTip.

The bait? My family feature, "A Ghost of a Chance".

The goal? A sale, duh!

Will it happen? Only God knows.

But I figure it's like the old joke:

Saul wants to win the lottery - badly. So Saul pleads with God.

"Dear Lord, PLEASE let me win the lottery this week!"
Each and every week, Saul give the same plea,
"Dear Lord, PLEASE let me win the lottery this week!"
One day, just after Saul utters his usual plea, he hears the booming voice of God.
"Saul, do you want to win this week's lottery?"
"Yes, Dear Lord, YES!", Saul cries.
"Then do me a favor." says God
"Anything. What is it?", asks Saul
"Buy a ticket!"

I'll keep you all updated on my progress.

Sunday, August 13, 2006

Losing More Than Touch

It's 12:28 am, and I just finished watching "The Rock". I've seen it before, but I never realized that a friend of mine was in it. As the credits were rolling, I noticed his name - SAM WHIPPLE.

When his name came up, a flood of memories came to me. You see, we went to college together. He was a skinny/geeky kid, who always smiled. He was someone you knew you could trust. We were part of a group of up and coming talent.We were going to be the next hot actors. Donald Petrie was one of us. He performed with Sam and me in college. My recollection of those times is still strong today.

Unfortunately, I wasn't as committed as Sam was. I never developed that thick skin so vital to survival in Hollywood as an actor. Sam, on the otherhand did. And he did quite well because of it. You probably don't know his name, but you sure as hell know his face. He did commercials, television, and features. The skinny/geeky kid I knew in college turned into a seasoned professional.

We lost touch after college, but I always got a thrill to see him on the screen - both large and small.

So, back to tonight. After seeing his name in the credits for "The Rock", I immediately got online and went straight to IMDB to find out what he's been up to.

There he was. The same face, the same openess in his expression. Only something was horribly different.

Sam was dead.

My friend Sam died in 2002 of colon cancer, and I hadn't heard of it. As I write these words I am crying; for him, for me.

Damn me! Why hadn't I kept in touch with him? I loved him. He was so true, so genuine. I regret not having been a better friend to him.

If there's someone you keep meaning to get back in touch with, but life just keeps getting in your way, PLEASE do it now.

You will never regret it.

Friday, August 11, 2006

Do You Have Balls of Steel?

In Hollywood these are a "Must Have" item. They may be the only things that keep you going between bouts of rejection from production companies.

Did you know that if you don't have 'em, you can buy 'em? I sure as hell didn't ---until David Freedman, of the Hollywood View agency, pointed this out.

Try as I might, I couldn't get my hand on a pair. Until yesterday.

There they were; just sitting there waiting for me - in Chinatown. And they're p-r-e-t-t-y, too! Feel real nice in my hands... smooth...round.

They even tinkle!

SAY WHAT ?!?!?!?

Let me explain. During Expo 4, David Freedman made an analogy using (of all things) Ben Wa balls. For those of you who haven't heard of them, they're small metal balls made in China and Japan, and they're used, well...shall we, an act of pleasure??? Not that I would ever do that. (Well, come to think of it, I'm not sure I even COULD do that!)

Anyway, The real purpose of my $3.00 purchase is to remind me each and every time I receive a, "This isn't quite what we're looking for" letter, to get past it and go on.

And so I shall.

And, they really do tinkle nicely!

Tuesday, August 08, 2006

Life: Where the Best Material Comes From

So, today I'm taking my two kids to PetSmart for some unnecessary supplies, and my 8 year-old asks me,

"Mom, which kind of pets are the easiest to take care of?"
To which I replied,
"Dead ones, honey."

Doesn't get much better than that.

Sunday, August 06, 2006

Call for Help

Okay, I admit it. I'm an idiot. Actually, I'm not an an idiot, but I am computer-challenged. Greatly.

Try as I might, I simply cannot figure out how to add links onto my blog.

Yes, I've already read the directions. yes, I've already contacted the IT people. No, I do not understand what everyone has told me. Like I said before; computer-challenged.

Several of you have kindly added me onto your blogs. I would love to reciprocate - if I could, that is.

Would someone out there PLEASE give me simple, straight-forward instructions??????

In ENGLISH, preferably.

Oh, and thank you!

Tuesday, August 01, 2006

May I Validate That For You...?

Validation. What a wonderful thing to have happen. In my opinion, it just doesn't happen often enough; and to people who truly deserve it, too.

I got some today. And, I really needed it.

It came in the form of a rejection letter from the Nicholl Fellowships in Screenwriting competition. It seems I didn't make the Quarterfinals (rats!), but... a small note at the bottom of the form letter stated that, "You were close --- among the top 10% of all entries into the competition". All entries, being a total of 4,899 good, so-so, and truly horrible scripts.

Well, good golly, Miss Molly, if this news didn't brighten my day!

I am in love with the screenplay that I wrote. I know, I know... everyone says that. But, I REALLY believe that this one is special. This could be THE ONE that gets me where I want to go. God knows, I've tried hard enough.

Kudos to those who go forward with the Nicholl. I couldn't be happier for them.

Or, for me.