At my ripe old age of none of your business, I have decided to revisit a passion of mine and pursue a career in acting. To be quite honest, I wouldn’t characterize this as a “career” move as much as something that I am dabbling in for the sake of creative pleasure. For every overpaid screenwriter or A-list actor, there are millions of people who lack either the talent or luck to be able to list any income from anything in the creative arts when it comes time to file a tax return. Even as an award-winning author, this is true of me as well. That said, I will certainly try to write off all the money I’ve spent on parking in my quest to get cast in something that pays nothing but promises IMDb credit.
I’ve been a creative all my life and I still have to “work” for a living doing a lot of other things that have nothing to do with painting, composing music, doing stand-up comedy or the occasional voiceover or commercial. I’ve done all those things and I can still walk down the street without anyone asking for my autograph. In my spare minute, I pick up the occasional weekend gig while still showing up and playing the part of a responsible adult and doing my job well the other five days a week. That this position for which I stress myself out and over-perform like a circus animal is the slowest get rich quick scheme known to man cannot be overstated. The last time I got a raise was when I played poker and that was sometime back in the ‘80s.
I’m officially 99.99% not famous.
What I’ve learned about this acting stuff is that it prepares you for a lot of waiting around to be called or called back and that you are one of a bazillion faces that are going through the same motions at casting calls all across the country. It’s like being on the dating scene all over again without the free dinner or movie. But at least you get to see what your competition looks like and feel as if someone else is the loser when you’re chosen for the role with two full lines of dialogue and those lines get cut even before the director yelled, “Action!”