Acting Made Stupid Simple

28 Mar

“How long have you been acting?”

I hear that question a lot. The problem is,  I don’t have a clear answer. I remember doing school plays in 5th and 6th grade. I also recall a high school play in which I got to kiss a older girl. The memory was quickly tarnished by a comment she apparently made that got shared with me: “he kisses like a Muppet.”

The truth is, in my junior year of high school I probably did kiss like a Muppet. I hadn’t dated by that time despite two long-time crushes. Fortunately college helped me catch up quickly. That’s also where I solidified my interest in acting, and learned a lot in the theatre and in the classroom. Unfortunately, my only “plan” was to apply for MFA programs and when those auditions didn’t lead to acceptance by a university, I abandoned my dream of acting professionally.

A career in radio began instead, which lead to working in television. I found my way back to acting as I briefly trained in improvisation with a troupe in Albany, New York. Then three years later, after my TV station in Houston shut down, I decided it was time to make the move into acting. That’s not the most direct path to take.

Since then I have met hundreds of people who wish they were actors or dabble in the craft. I get asked questions frequently, and they’re the same questions I would’ve asked an actor when I was 22 or even 32.

How do I write a resume?

How do I get an agent?

How much does acting pay?

It’s easy to waste a lot of time trying to get started or spend years wondering if acting is a viable option for you. Knowing what I know now and going back to age 22, I would find a good acting coach and commit myself 100% to developing the skills and knowledge to give it my best shot. Since I don’t have a time machine, I have decided to focus on helping others save time, and my helping hand is coming in the form of a book: Acting Made Stupid Simple.

The book publisher chose the title. He’s a talented writer himself and highly intelligent.  I mean, he asked me to write the book. That’s awfully smart!

So in the next few months I’ll be creating a how-to guide filled with bite-sized tips, flavorful anecdotes and easy-to-digest action items. Maybe all these food references will make you feel like less of a starving artist.

I anticipate a length of 150-200 pages, a little bigger than you can fit in the pocket of your skinny jeans but still small enough to easily carry with you to Starbucks so you have something to read while you’re waiting for the friend who is always late.

I might amuse you with some pics and colorful diagrams. That will be especially helpful for those with an attention span that doesn’t reach beyond two sentences. I know my audience. Actors tend to have ADD, even if it’s not the diagnosable kind.

Expect a reasonable price as long as your definition of reasonable doesn’t include items on the Dollar Menu at McDonald’s.  I won’t be getting rich by writing this book but if one of my reader’s uses the information and signs a lucrative deal for a network television series, then I’ll have a success story to write about in the next book.

And everyone will want to buy that one.

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