The funny thing about going SAG is that once you do it, you start to see all these other opportunities you would've had if you had stayed non-union. Now with the advent of digital cameras, anyone and everyone can be a filmmaker. So, if you're an undiscovered genius, there's not a whole lot of incentive to try and raise big bucks for your first indie. No way. Just shoot what is basically a home movie, edit it on your Mac and burn DVDs. Then what? Well, do what a colleague of mine does: create a ruse like a birthday party, then show your friends your home movie. Of course, since they're your friends, they'll say nice things to you, creating a nice, safe atmosphere for the screening. Happens all the time to the pros in Hollywood. Why not with you? Just don't use other people's birthday parties to try to show your home movie or you won't get invited anymore.
The thing is not to concentrate on what opportunities you've missed and focus on what you COULD be doing. After all, why look in the rearview mirror when you can be looking at the road ahead? Yes, I know, that sounds very Pollyanna of me, but no, it's just the Zen philosopher in me. The grass is never greener in someone else's yard. It's just grass. My grass is just grass. Your grass is just...well, you get the picture.
In my first post, I mentioned I could be out of a job. Well, it's been over six months since I've worked at the office. I still have a desk, apparently. Just collecting dust. What have I been doing? Working on my writing projects, going to auditions, freelancing on side projects such as a start-up magazine or writing advertising copy, and collecting a steady paycheck from the unemployment office. How much, you ask? $332 a week. It's enough to pay for rent, expenses, but that's about it. My current year's benefits run out in three weeks. Then I can refile in April. So, I have to play it cool for about a month. Or book a job, whichever comes first.
I've figured out that my next year's weekly unemployment check would be about $404 a week. That's a decent chunk of lazy change. Some don't make that much by working. Yeah, but it's not good for the soul. Believe me, I've struggled with this. I don't know how actors do it. I just don't feel comfortable living on the lam...