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The End of a Win Streak

I’ve been on a bit of a win streak for the past 15 months. 26 Film and Television Auditions. No bookings. 0-26. In the upside down world, I’m batting .1000… In the real world, even a reckless optimist gets discouraged.

About a month ago I decided to call it quits. To throw in the towel. My plan- to take 6 months away from the audition circuit and get some more training with a new acting coach. My problem- my acting coach is out of town and I can’t start working with him until December. So as I’m wrestling with what to do, a couple of auditions come down the pipe. I figure I’ll give it one more shot.

I had 2 auditions on the same day last Friday. One for a commercial. One for a bit part in a TV show. I came out of the commercial audition and took a walk around the block. I keep an audio journal on my cell phone and I recorded an entry. I said, “If something good happens today, I know I’m on the right path…”

Something good happened. I booked the commercial! It’s a car commercial and I play a snowboarder making a New Year’s Resolution. Should be on the air in December.

So I’m going to keep at it. I am now 1-27 and I feel way more confident. I guess that would make me an optimist…

A Tale of Two Auditions – Part 2

For Part 1, click here: http://wp.me/pFrOn-ao

It’s Wednesday. 5:00pm. I am sitting in a waiting room with a handful of actors. This is the second callback for the commercial we are all vying for. There are eight of us in the room. They will choose two for the commercial. Four dogs, one bone. Let the games begin.

I am paired with a guy who looks about 10 years older than me.  I ask him if he wants to run lines together while we wait. He says no. We are teammates. But we are also competing against each other. Its awkward.

Our names are called. The client is in another room watching us on a TV feed. We run the scene once. Its stiff. We run it again, its loosening up. We run it again, its good. We switch roles and run it 3 more times and it feels great. The director is laughing. I am smiling as we step out of the casting room.

They have asked us all to stay in the waiting room so they can see some alternate pairings. What started as an audition for 80+ actors was cut down to a callback for twenty. Now there are only eight.

And then, the moment. A door opens and one of the women from casting comes out holding a piece of paper. “Anthony, are you here?” My heart races.

“Yes.” I reply.

“OK, you can go home. Sorry about that. You were great. It has nothing to do with you honey.” She smiles and I know her words are sincere. And then there were seven…

I’m not going to say it doesn’t hurt. It does. But there is a scripture that says, “And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose.” Who knows? Maybe the casting director will remember me and bring me in for something even better. Here’s to being an optimist ;o)

I heard the voice of God (He sounds like me!!!)

God spoke to me today. For real. Depending on your own personal beliefs, you may think this makes me crazy. But before you close this window and dismiss me as delusional, let me explain…

I was driving on the 401 in Toronto. This is a highway where God is spoken of often- usually betwixt much profanity and raising of fingers. I was sitting there  feeling quite bogged down with my career. You see, there are four things I love to do: Writing, Acting, Rapping and Speaking. I have been doing a lot of speaking lately and I have put all of my other passions on the back burner. And because speaking is what pays my bills, it is easy to justify that.

But… in the last couple of weeks I have been haunted by this terrible restlessness. I can’t focus. I’m indecisive. It’s awful. And today on the 401, I heard the voice of God. He simply said:

“There is very little that you actually love to do… so do it all.”

Pretty simple huh?

Now, you may be thinking: “If there is a God, and this God were to speak to you, why wouldn’t he tell you the name of the plant that can be used to cure AIDS? Or give you a strategy to create world peace? Or give you the winning numbers for next week’s lottery?” Good questions. And I don’t have the answers. But I do believe that God wants to speak to every person on the planet. There is a scripture in the Book of Job that says:

“For God does speak–now one way, now another–though we may not perceive it.”
– Job 33:14

Imagine that… God speaks. There’s no thunder. No lightning. No James Earl Jones voice. It is so subtle that we don’t even recognize it. God speaks and we don’t even notice.

I once heard a guy talk about this whole thing. He said, “God’s voice sounds like spontaneous thoughts that light upon the mind.” I thought that was neat.

Of course, I don’t think he only speaks in spontaneous thoughts. I think He speaks through emotions and dreams. Scriptures and convictions. Sunsets and images of Jesus that supernaturally appear on breakfast toast.

OK, maybe not the toast. But I do believe we can miss His voice. And I don’t want to miss it. So all day I have been turning this spontaneous thought over and over in my mind. And the more I think about it, the more I feel a peace about my career, the more I feel emboldened to fan all of my passions into flame. This little spontaneous thought accomplished quite a lot.

OK, I admit it. Maybe this was just me. After all, there’s no proof. No evidence. And I don’t have the name for some miracle plant growing in the Amazon. But I also don’t have that deep restlessness anymore. And for that, I am thankful. Now if you’ll excuse me, I have to go butter my Jesus toast.

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