Wednesday, 26 July 2006

I'm pretty selfish really

I've always known and (mostly) acknowledged that I'm a fairly selfish person. I really *want* stuff and when I don' get it I can sulk with the best of them. There have been many decision in my life that would have seemed like sensible, helpful, even generous decisions, that were really, deep down, motivated by my own ego. I am a very jealous person too... not so much of romantic relationships but of friendships and of opportunties and recognition.

Anyway the reason I'm pondering this today is that I was thinking about the whole situation in Lebanon and Israel etc. I really know hardly anything about it (I don't watch the news... I know I should but that time of day is always hectic enough without trying to concentrate on the world's problems... I should put the radio on during the day maybe...) but I just get the sense of somethingbig and awful going on... not that those words do it justice at all... but, my goodness, people's whole lives and thee history and future of several countries are at stake here. And yet I hardly even think about it. As if my own little world and my own selfish desires are more worth thinking about than the lives and lifestyles of millions of people.

Now, I've always agreed that things are relative... that just because other people have bigger struggles, doesn't make your own struggles any smaller for you personally. And I do believe that is true. But really, one must stop and think about these things, and remind oneself how lucky I really am to be worrying about the amount of time it'll take to get my career going rather than the amount of time it'll be before my family and children are threatened by war.

Hopefully when I'm successful and wealthy (positive thinking...), I'll do the right thing and help out as many needy people as I can. Feel free to quote me on that, when the time comes. :)

Tuesday, 25 July 2006

That's interesting...

Apparently it's not true that Johnny Depp is lined up to play Michael Hutchence in the film about the rock star's life. Johnny "laughs off the idea".

He reckons he's not 'glam' enough. Oh well, them's the breaks.

Monday, 24 July 2006

More on "Pirates"

Here and here are two more great posts by Merlin about Pirates of the Caribbean... and if you look in the comments, some long and rambling discussion... actually, the original posts are pretty long and rambly too but if you have a few minutes to concentrate, they're a great read (if you're interested in film, Christianity and mythology).

I'm really enjoying the process of analysing these films with Merlin and digging deeper into the plot, characters, and myths they contain.

And, based on some of our discoveries, here's my quote of the day...

"It doesn't have to be fact to be truth."

~Me, or Merlin... can't remember who said it first...probably Merlin.

Sunday, 23 July 2006

Success and failure

Success is the ability to go from one failure to another with no loss of enthusiasm.
~Sir Winston Churchill

Just cos I like it.

Hopefully after a while, though, the failures dwindle, hey Mr Churchill? And achievements take over. We hope.

And now for something completely different (and yet quite relevant to the topic!) - what the??? is so good about The Princess Bride? I just finished watching it. I know there are many people utterly devoted to it as one of the best movies ever. All I saw was cheesy comic relief and Mandi Pitinkin doing his best Antonio Banderas impersonation. And that small guy with the annoying voice. And the hero - it took me half the movie to figure out that yes, he is a real man, not a lip-synching cardboard cutout.
So please enlighten me, if you can. :)

Saturday, 22 July 2006

Crazy things

In the last couple of days I've done a couple of crazy things:

1. Listed myself on one of the USA's online casting directories.

You know, just in case some huge hollywood director is after some random unknown Aussie actress and wants to fly her to the states. Roll your eyes, off you go.

2. Applied for an unpaid feature-length film to be shot (in four days apparently!) on the Sunshine Coast next January.

Yes, the Sunshine Coast. That's only about three hours' flight from here. But hey, we have been planning to have a holiday up there sometime. Noel can have a great holiday with the girls while I'm filming! And who says feature-length films can't be shot in four days???

Bring it on, baby....


Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one's courage.
~Anais Nin

And how much courage do I have? That is the question.

As well as: Even if I have sufficient courage, who will support me and come with me on the journey of "expansion"?

Just feeling a bit cranky and unsupported, you see, in these plans and steps I'm trying to make.

*sob sob*

*alas, alack*

blah blah blah...

Friday, 21 July 2006

More happiness?

How does a quote of the day sound?

I heard this on New Inventors, of all places, the other night.

When you relinquish the desire to control the future, you can have more happiness.
- Nicole Kidman

I reckon, though, that the reliquishing of said desire to control needs to be balanced with enough desire to be proactive and ambitious. Otherwise you'd never go anywhere or do anything. You still need to know what you want, aim for it and take steps towards it, but be content in the knowledge that the journey won't always look the way you expect.

That's very hard to do. When I can't see the big picture and know what's around the corner, it's easy to get down and anxious about where life seems to be taking me. I need to remind myself that I am taking the steps I need to take, and aiming in the right direction, and the rest is out of my control.

Thursday, 20 July 2006

A conversation with my girl

Miss T (3 1/2) saw the photo of JD and recognised him from the movie.

T: You found that one!
S: That's Johnny Depp.
T: Donny Depp.
S: Yes. Mummy wants to be like Johnny Depp one day.
T: Oh. You'll be a boy?
S: No, I'll still be a girl but I want to be a good actor like him.
T: Then you can't be a mummy?
S: It's ok, I'll still be a mummy.
T: No, you'll be a boy!


Tuesday, 18 July 2006


Just have to confess that Miss T and I are currently watching Curse of the Black Pearl (first Pirates movie, for the uneducated readers) for the 2nd time today, and the third time in a week.

And loving it. :)

Am dying to see Dead Man's Chest again but, alas, going to the cinema costs money. :(

One more little thing - I have been constantly laughing to myself about the fact that the chest, in said movie, belonging to the dead man, does in fact contain the contents of said dead man's chest. His chest contains the contents of his chest. *laughs with hilarity* Love it.

And if you haven't seen the film you're going to think I've completely lost my marbles, with that comment. So you'll just have to see the film!

Oh and I just found this:

Which Pirates of the Caribbean character are you?

That's it! I'm not obsessed by this because I want to be a fabulous actor like Johnny Depp - it's because secretly I want to be a swashbuckling charming pirate like Captain Jack! :)

What's the plan?

Yesterday I had a very encouraging and helpful phone conversation with an old friend from college, Sarah. She's been doing the struggling-actor-while-raising-two-girls thing for 6 years now. I actually called her to ask which agent she's with, which some people would find rather rude, but Sarah didn't mind at all and called back with some great advice for me. Thanks Sarah!

The gist of the conversation and her advice was that, yes, the industry is slow right now, and now's not a good time to try to get an agent. Rather, it's a good time to spend some time working on what it is I'm selling (ie myself!), and finding the most effective way to do that, then start doing it. This time of the year is the time to get organised with photos, submissions to casting books etc.

Another big thing to think about is What is my type? A good way to sell yourself to casting people is to decide on a "type" (eg "nice girl", "strong ambitious woman", "glamour girl"...) and key all your "marketing" towards that. Have a headshot that reflects it, so that when you turn up to a casting you look like your photo and it reflects the way you come across in person. Apparently casting people don't actually care how "diverse" your acting skills are, they just want to know what kind of part you would look and act best for. Only once you've made some headway with that should you try to diversify a bit more.

Basically, what I need to do is:
*decide/find what my type is.
*get proper headshots done and printed.
*write up an attractive CV with photo, and business cards with photo.
*submit my details to the casting directories.
*network! Find out what's going on and who's doing it.
*keep auditioning as much as possible.

Then, in a few months when it's getting back into the normally busy time of the year and all the agencies are over tax time etc, try again with the agents, this time with more confidence and knowledge of what I'm good at and where I'm aiming.

That's the plan! Quite a bif of it requires money, so I think the plan also needs to include get a casual job and save some money!

Sunday, 16 July 2006

Symbolism in Pirates

Ok well my ever-brilliant friend Lusiana just taught me (over the phone! Thanks Lus!) how to do links so here we go.

This is an extremely fascinating bloke, "Merlin", writing about the symbols, psychology and religious philospohy-type-stuff of Pirates. Merlin's gonna think I'm stalking him the way I've been raving about him lately! Here's some more. (You have to read through that one a way to find the stuff about Pirates - but the rest is great reading too. Merlin writes some very clever analyses of films and literature and their religious/psychological/philosophical symbolism.)

No time to ramble more about it now but I'm fascinated by it all. :-)

Aaaahhhh... Pirates...

That's a good aaahh, by the way. A happy sigh of euphoria and excitement, with a hint of desperate desire. It's a feeling that happens every now and then after I watch a particularly inspiring film or play.

I saw Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest last night. All the way through it, and ever since, I've felt the charged thrill of having witnessed something not only brilliant, but important too. Brilliant because of the superb writing, directing, cinematography, editing and acting... and important, I'm not sure why. It just has that feeling of "there's something big about this." It means something. It affected me in a huge way.

If someone can teach me how to do neat links to other people's blogs (please!) I want to put some links to some really fascinating people's thoughts on the symbolism and philosphies of the Pirates movies.

My overwhelming feeling is an intense desire to be a part of something like that. Imagine the thrill of bringing a character to life in such a great piece of work... a character that then moves and affects thousands of people in cinemas everywhere, inspires people, makes them cry, laugh, gasp... oooh I crave the opportunity to do that.

Noel and I had a big argument yesterday. I was upset that he wasn't supporting me in wanting to do some unpaid acting work and to pursue as much as I can my dream of acting. He made a comment along the lines of "yeah well everyone wants to be a big famous movie star". It really cut me because it made me question myself and my own motivation. Am I really a true actor, really pursuing this for the sake of the art or am I just after some fame and fortune? Seeing Pirates last night helped me remember and reaffirm that yes, I just love acting. I love film, I love theatre, I love what it does to people and the way it can have such an impact on people.

Of course, let's be honest - I would probably enjoy being a bit famous, and I'd love to meet clever successful people like Johnny Depp. I wrote in my diary last night (when I couldn't get to the computer to blog) that Depp is one of those people I have an "I-wanna-be-your-friend" Crush on. I discovered this phenomenon in high school when I was convinced I was in love with one of the boys in the musical. We hung out at rehearsals but never really had much to do with each other - I craved his attention and company. After a while I realised I wasn't interested romantically, I was fascinated by his brain. He was a very clever musician and mathematician and brilliant at observing and communicating. I admired that and just wanted to be around it - I just wanted to hang out with him and bask in his fascinating personality. The "I-wanna-be-your-friend" Crush feels almost like being in love but it's not, and it can happen with men, women, strangers even. Most of the people I have had it for have been musicians, actors, or both. I guess because artistic brilliance is the type I'm most inspired by.

I'm re-reading this and realising I just can't put into words the way I'm feeling. I'm inspired and excited and I'm longing for success. I sound like a complete dork, but it's because I've suddenly remembered the depth of my passion.

Saturday, 15 July 2006

Guess what

Nothing, that's what. As you can probably tell, from the lack of posting this week, I'm not up to anything.

I've been contemplating signing back up with the fairly dodgy agency I used to be a part of - they're the type who charge you to join them and mainly deal with extra work and TV commercials. But, they do actually get people paying work and I'm starting to think maybe that's better than nothing at this point. It would just require me being very assertive and demanding with them and insisting that they do actually get me the work they didn't get me last time.

And I would have to find the money for the "photography" and "marketing" fee. And we all know how much money I have to be flinging around randomly. I'm hoping (really really hoping) that Noel and I get a fair bit of moolah back from the lovely tax office and that there'll be a coupla hundred left after we pay a million other debts, and maybe I can use that.

That's a lot of hoping and maybe....

Anyway I'm really torn because we were always taught that the agencies that charge a fee are just beyond dodgy, totally pathetic and not worth the effort. My "pollyanna" side says that they'd be fine, they'd get me a few TV ads and stuff and then a better agent would be interested or I'd get *discovered* for a big movie or something. (yes yes, roll your eyes.) My not-so-pollyanna side says "Run! They'll take your money and do nothing and then you'll miss out on getting something better!"

And who knows, with the industry being so slow (as I am constantly reminded), even they might not want another person on their books.

Oh well, give it a couple of weeks. We'll see what I can manage with one more big effort to nab an agent, and after that we'll see what the tax man brings.

Tuesday, 11 July 2006

"Our books are closed"

and repeat. and again.

Shall I call back in the future then?

*sigh* *roll eyes* You could if you liked.

I suppose you gotta feel a bit sorry for them - they probably have to say that a hundred times a week. But you would think they could amend the script slightly to "I'm sorry, our books are closed".

Well, I phoned three agents and emailed another (who doesn't appear to have a phone number). Can't say I haven't tried.

Money money money...

Which makes it sound like I have some. Which I don't, at all.

Hence, I'm on the job-hunt again. I applied yesterday for an assistant position at a Toddler/Kindy Gymbaroo. Between 2 and 4 days a week apparently, whcih would be good. Gramma and Nan-Nan can do a coupla days babysitting. (Yay for grandparents who live close by!) Also doing the rounds of the local shops again. Wendy's had a casual spot advertised but by the time I saw the ad it was already filled. Plus there only looked to be 15-year-olds working there so I'm probably too old.

While Bear (super-clingy mumma's girl!) sleeps today I will start calling those agents. I'll spend the time between now and then psyching myself up and rehearsing a little speech which I'll probably change my mind about as soon as someone answers the phone and wonders who is the funny-sounding speechless person calling them.

That sentence was too long but I'm not editing because I'm typing left-handed due to aforementioned mumma's girl occupying the right.


Friday, 7 July 2006

Oh dear! Missing for so long!

Deary me, I haven't blogged for over a week. I'm sure you're all (whoever you are, oh People Who Read My Blog) pining away and missing me terribly.

Had a really lovely few days away with Noely and the girls. Stayed with my gorgeous friends Lus and Brett and their scrumptious kiddos, and then a night in freezing Oberon. Was sooo great. Noel's had two weeks off work but he's back on Monday. *sob*

So, what with keeping busy being a lady of luxury with my hubby home I've lost a bit of momentum. Have been spring-cleaning the house (Lusi's amazingly organised and happy home inspired me), which is long overdue and really refreshing... but otherwise not much happening.

I almost decided to be Stage Manager for our local theatre group's upcoming production of Cosi, but I just couldn't figure out how to make the timing work around Noel's unpredictable work schedule, and the girls' needs. I enjoyed visiting their rehearsal, though. How nice to be in a theatre again. To be honest I was really wishing I was there to be on stage rather than backstage. It was great chatting with the director - an hilarious lady who just didn't stop talking. She asked pretty doubtfully if I had worked backstage before, and upon learning I had a degree, majoring in fact in Stage Management, she was completely besotted with the very idea of me. I felt awful to have to let her down, because she was so dreading having to train someone who had no idea about stage management.

Ah well, them's the breaks.

When Noel's back at work next week my task is to phone all the agents to whom I sent my headshot a couple of weeks ago - to ask if they received it and how desperate they are to sign me up. *hah* *snort*

Haven't been getting many audition notices... things must really be very quiet... sshhh...

Wake up people! Make some more films! Cast some new shows! There are starving actors all over the city, come on!