For more years than there have been “social networking” sites known as Facebook, Twitter, MySpace, or even Friendster, I have used the same logline as a part of my various online profiles. I first debuted the line in my “about me” section for a column I wrote for a humor magazine back in 2000.
Now, before you judge me, it was a humor magazine. My job was to write about being a single woman knocking on 30, trying to date in Hollywood. I was paid to be snarky and flirtatious. Here is the logline that covered that — and then some — so well that I used it for more than a decade, all over the Internet:
Eh… pretty much your standard average everyday sarcastic, cynical, anal-retentive, obsessive-compulsive insomniac perfectionist with a great rack.
I even used that on LinkedIn. Until last week. Last week I had an epiphany thanks to a friend’s insistence that I buy and read Steven Pressfield’s The War of Art. I was in a stuck place, feeling completely disconnected from way too many things. Important things. Despite all my attempts to keep my mentoring work in the shadows, I kept hearing more and more people valuing my facilitation of their tier jumps. I kept getting signs from the universe, as they say, that no matter how many times I refused to call myself a coach (much like I refused to call myself a writer for so many years), others were going to come to me for coaching. Period.
As I revealed in a recent interview that I have been transitioning to casting only the projects on which I am also producing (or ones on which I’m so ridiculously in love with the crew and the material that I just have to say yes), I felt myself wince, thinking, “Are you sure you are ready to put that out there? Because the universe will respond. The casting jobs will stop coming!” And then I thought back to a conversation I had with a casting mentor, two years ago, about my many jobs in this life. I said, “If I were told I could be the most successful casting director on the planet, but I wouldn’t be allowed to write for actors or teach actors or consult with actors ever again, I would never take that deal. But if I were told I had to give up casting entirely in order to continue writing for actors, meeting with actors, helping them along their path? I’d do it in a heartbeat.” Clearly, what I am passionate about is working with actors. Casting is one of many ways in which I get to do that. And I have been very lucky to cast some phenomenal projects and work with some of the most creative, brilliant people in this industry.
But at the end of the day, my heart sings when I get an email from an actor I’ve never met, telling me the order in which I arranged words in a book or a column somehow made a shift that got that actor closer to her goals. Yes, I like the thank-you notes that come from actors thrilled with their time on the set to which I sent them, but this is different. This is my purpose.
So, after reading The War of Art; after being invited to tour this fall in Chicago, New York, and Toronto; after being approached about turning my Self-Management for Actors Seminars into web-based courses for actors worldwide; after being invited to pitch the Self-Management for Actors book into an adaptation for a major franchise of instructional titles; and after getting very clear that I’ve spent more than a decade preaching that actors need to get clear on their brand so that their buyers GET them while never really focusing on my brand to make sure people GET me… here it is. My new logline:
Living my dreams by helping others figure out how to live theirs.
Yup. Now, I know the column is already coming off as all about me this week, but since I’ve never asked for this sort of help before, I’m gonna do it now. Have I helped you? Shoot me a vid, saying so. Want me to bring a Self-Management for Actors Seminar to your town or get on my mailing list for whatever it is that comes next? Start HERE! THANK YOU!
Okay, thanks for allowing that indulgence. It’s tough for me, but I’m trying to get over my allergy to self-promotion so that I can have this next tier jump, which will allow me to help even more people connect with their paths. And now… about your next tier jump: Is your logline in line with where you’re headed? Are you teaching us how to GET YOU?
It’s not so much about having a succinct logline on your website or in your “about me” all over the social networking sites — although that’s good use of that space — as it is about walking around with a sort of one-line non-musical soundtrack every day, so that any quick check of, “Is this on-brand?” gets answered easily and confidently.
As Pressfield states on page 157 of The War of Art, “Let’s ask ourselves like that new mother: What do I feel growing inside me? Let me bring that forth, if I can, for its own sake and not for what it can do for me or how it can advance my standing.”
Yes, getting clear on your logline, your brand, what you’re “selling” is absolutely beneficial to your buyers’ understanding of you (which leads you to the work, faster), but if you let the clarity come from the place where you create every character and tell every story, it’ll be so freakin’ simple. It’ll be so dang clear. And you’ll never have to think that much about it again. Because you’ll be living it.
Thanks to all of you, I sure am living mine!
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/001360.html. Please support the many wonderful resources provided by the Breakdown Services family. This posting is the author’s personal archive.