“I get out and hustle because nobody’s casting anything in my living room.” — Stephon Fuller

I think about this quote all the time. Actors all over the world pursue their acting careers from their apartments; from their makeshift office spaces; from the occasional workshop facility or acting class, sure; but mainly from their living rooms.

And there’s no casting going on there.

Sure, you can submit on projects using Actors Access, check out what’s happening using CastingAbout, read up on the news at Deadline, and make sure IMDb is all nice and updated, but doing that work takes much less time when you just stick to the work and save the grousing at Facebook or moment-to-moment updating at Twitter to a minimum and actually do the work and then get out there and meet people.

Yeah, I love to quote Blake Robbins, who says, “Pursue the work, not the people.” Love it. But the work — unless you’re in the thick of writing act three of your phenomenal new script at your laptop — is outside! Oh, and because your laptop is portable, consider even doing some of your writing “out there” too. You never know who you might meet, as you work at a great little spot in a park or on the pier or at a coffee shop or even at the public library.

Get out there. And surround yourself with people who inspire you. I used to say “surround yourself with people who motivate you,” but then recently I heard someone explain that motivation is more like trying to push yourself (or someone else) into a creative, hustling place from the outside, while inspiration is being IN a creative, hustling place and inviting the reluctant part of yourself (or someone else) in, to join you.

I love that! And I love being inspired!

So, are you spending time around people who inspire you? Are you plugged in with a group whose mere existence makes you smile and “yes, and…” even when you’re not together? Or are you doing that “artist all alone” thing?

Well, if it’s the latter, stop that. I wrote about places to connect in New York not too long ago. I’ve written about places in LA several times. How about tonight at the LA Actors Tweet-Up? Or tomorrow at Naked Angels’ Tuesdays @9? Or wait a week and hit next Wednesday’s Actors’ Lounge.

When you’re alone, work in “sacred space.” Clear the clutter. Play great music. Light a candle. Make it FUN to find projects online and to submit where most appropriate. Read, learn, and think critically and creatively about the industry trends you’re observing. Create a ritual and stick to it. Reward yourself for making things happen. And when you’ve finished the tasks that do require “alone time,” get off the ‘puter and get out there. Find your tribe. If it’s not already gathering somewhere, start it up. Grab a group of friends (not Poison Playmates, but instead co-conspirators and collaborators) and start creating. Keep creating. Never stop creating!


Bonnie Gillespie is living her dreams by helping others figure out how to live theirs. Wanna work with Bon? Start here. Thanks!


Originally published by Actors Access at http://more.showfax.com/columns/avoice/archives/001294.html. Please support the many wonderful resources provided by the Breakdown Services family. This posting is the author’s personal archive.

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