NOTHING Can Replace or Diminish a Strong Work Ethic
It doesn’t really matter whether you’re an actor, writer or IT professional.
You must have a strong work ethic to survive and thrive in this world.
From an observational standpoint, I use a lot of child stars as an example. Not all, but a lot of them were quite lucky from an early age and the only job they ever had was to be an actor.
Pretty great, huh?
However their experience is not a realistic one and it did not prepare them for the world at large when/if their careers stalled.
A lot of them are not prepared and were not prepared for curve balls that headed their way, because they didn’t have any other skill than being an actor.
It has nothing to do with having an Plan A or Plan B, per se.
It has to do with your world and life experience.
From my own observation when I hear of a young star or starlet being “difficult” or showing up late, keeping people waiting, being snotty to fans...it’s not shocking to me.
They don’t appreciate what a gift they have been given.
Those of you in the trenches waiting tables, tending bar, substitute teaching and on and on are believe it or not SO lucky & SO much more prepared for life.
When/if you get those bookings and triumphs, you appreciate it and do not take it for granted.
They were simply not prepared for a world that didn’t include a hit TV show or film career.
On one hand, I believe if you’re a good person you’re going to be that same good person regardless of the money and success that comes your way.
On the other hand, the young starlets and stars that behave in such a manner are not much different than this younger generation coming out of school and expecting everything handed to them.
They haven’t had the struggle. They never waited tables or worked in a chaotic call center. They have never been sick to their stomach as the 1st of the month approaches. For them, that does not compute.
There are always exceptions. Always. But I see it quite frequently with successful actors that if you followed their journey you realize that they were pretty darn lucky.
True, we don’t always see their struggles and their work.
But if they have been a working actor since their teens and early 20’s, color them fortunate.
I have been working since I was 11 years old.
I was “the” neighborhood babysitter and was known as the type of responsible kid that parents trusted. And I did that consistently until I was old enough to get an official job at the mall. And many many jobs and careers followed including acting.
I went to school with kids that didn’t have to work. If we took a trek to the mall their parents easily and readily gave them a couple $100 to blow on whatever.
If I wanted whatever, I had to work to pay for it.
I’m bringing up Work Ethic because I believe it is so important for aspiring and working actors. You’ve often heard the phrase that your agent makes 10% so you’re responsible for 90% of the work.
And it’s SO true.
So many actors think once they sign with that agent that their work is done.
I talk about this in my book, “ACTING…It’s Not For Sissies”.
Once you sign with an agent THAT is when the work begins. NOW you’re in a position to capitalize on that connection and that person who is working to get you into doors.
So when you make it in that door you had better be ready.
How are you going to be ready?
Classes, workshops, up-to-date professional headshots, updated resume and of course TALENT.
And how you are going to pay for all of that? Work! Work! Work!
This business has ebbs and flows for everyone no matter their success level. You must be willing to venture out into unknown territory and take the reins.
You cannot sit and wait for your agent or anyone else to bring things to you. Go out and get it!!
There will always be actors that are working actors that people refer to as “difficult”, that will never change.
However, in most cases, do you want to know why it’s “who you know”? That’s because no one wants to spend a 15-hour day with a pain in the ass!!
If a director has worked with an actor and had a great experience, they’re going to hire that actor again.
That’s why it’s “who you know”.
There are producers and directors that say, you know what, I could get this person who is a much bigger “name”, but life is too damn short and if we’re going to embark on this creative journey, let’s enjoy it too!
Life is happening all around you.
You may not currently be at your chosen destination.
But please know if you’re armed with a healthy work ethic, you will always get the better of those challenges that life throws your way.
Break A Leg!
“ACTING…It’s Not For Sissies”