Laziness is the Actor's Enemy
Look in the mirror. It's time for a reality check. Ask yourself "Am I where I want to be in my career right now? If not, are you doing everything you can to change that? Be honest. Are you simply waiting around for your agent to get you auditions? Are you constantly making excuses and complaining about your lack of success? Acting involves tremendous work ethic, serious training, and a comprehensive understanding of how you are marketing yourself. Are you submitting every day, creating your own opportunities, networking, meeting people, updating your reel, and constantly honing your skills? If not, now is the time to make changes.
Laziness is the actor's enemy. It prevents us from taking our career into our own hands, it stunts our growth as artists, and is very unattractive to buyers. There is always someone working harder than you, who wants it more than you, who is more prepared, and ready to step in at any given moment. There are far too many actors, and far fewer opportunities. If you really want to do this, ask yourself if you are giving 100% of yourself to learning the essential skills and being the best artist you can be.
April is a time for agents to rethink their client list. Pilot season is done, they may be dropping some of their lower-earning clients, and they are now seeking new talent, perhaps by referrals, or by going to the big showcases. If you don't have an agent, now is the time to target them--in a smart way. I've written articles on this, and while there is no one way to do it, I can tell you that the one way NOT to do it is to blanket the town with headshots. That is lazy. You have to do your research, see which ones are right for you, and then target them. Do the work.
What if you already have an agent? Well if you are unhappy, then maybe it's time to make a change. I hear far too many actors who are "freelancing" with an agent, and haven't heard from them in a year. They are worried about leaving, because it's scary. I'm telling you that you are better off finding someone who is excited about you, even if that means you have to put a lot of hard work into finding a new one. It's your career, you are in control of it, and it's up to you to make the changes necessary to get to the next level. It's your career, and it's totally up to you where it goes.
Are you a good actor? Could you be better? If you aren't in a good acting class, then you are stunting your growth. Actors should never stop training and working on their craft. Trust me, when you step onto a TV set, it's expected that will deliver on a dime. The director doesn't have time to worry about you. Sometimes it's a huge emotional crying scene on the first day of filming, and sometimes cameras are swirling around you while you are doing a monologue. If you don't have a good foundation in training, then you are going to feel out of place, and not be able to concentrate on the circumstances of the scene to get you grounded. You constantly need to be practicing, and should find a teacher that challenges you, inspires you, and understands your journey.
If you are interested in TV and film, you should be getting together with friends and reading scenes on-camera all the time. Treat it like a gym, and work that muscle every week, whether you are in class or not. If you want to be a TV and film actor, you should be spending time on sets, learning about lighting, camera angles, whether you are doing student films, network TV shows, or helping your friends with their projects. You should be reading books about directing, about cinematography, spending time in an editing room, to fully understand what goes into a screen performance, and all the different parts that come together. Actors should always be learning, always be working their creative muscles. If you are serious about acting, there is no excuse.
It's the beginning of spring. Make some goals for yourself. Book that first costar role. Take that acting class you have been thinking about. Produce that web series you wrote. Drop your agent and find a new one. This is the season to take your career more seriously, to bring yourself to the next level, to give it everything, and see where it takes you.