Search This Blog

Sunday, March 31, 2013

Advice from Casting Directors On How To Get More Acting Jobs.


Wendy Alane Wright is a Hollywood Talent Manager with WAW Entertainment. Her clients have appeared in numerous national commercials, movies, webisodes, short films, and on television networks such as ABC, NBC, Comedy Central, BIO, Lifetime, plus many more. Previous to being a Manager and a Talent Agent at Burn Down Entertainment, she assisted many high profile Managers, Agents and Publicists in the careers of Neil Patrick Harris, Johnny Galecki, Sarah Michelle Geller, The Four Tops, The Bee Gees, Meatloaf, Whoopi Goldberg, Steve Guttenberg, The Cranberries Michael Jackson, Barbra Streisand, Kenny Rogers, and Neil Diamond. Wendy is also a Recording Artist, Actress, Author and Music Producer all  giving her a 360-degree perspective of the industry.

So you have your headshot, you have your growing resume. And you think I just need auditions. Once I get in the room and the see how great I am and how much talent I have they are going to hire me for the job. I don't need audition training, I am just going to wing it!" Yikes!!! Does that sound like you? I hope not. But the truth is, most beginning actors sound EXACTLY like that.

As a Talent Manager in Los Angeles, I feel it is my duty to tell you that is wrong! And make sure you have a change in your thinking right now, ASAP.

You studied acting in college or with a private teacher or in an acting school. Now that you have graduated it's time to put that that good acting training to use. So you move to Los Angeles or New York and are convinced people are going to hire you just because you are you. But, alas, that is not how it works. Auditioning is a very specific skill set. Unfortunately they do not teach it in college or in most acting schools. But being ignorant of the law, does not abolish the law. And the law of acting professionally means you will audition 90% of the time and act 10%. Therefore you must train extensively to become adept at auditioning. It is a skill you must master if you want to become a working actor.

When someone asks you what is your job? Your answer should be "I am a professional auditioner, who occasionally gets to act, and even more rarely, gets paid enough to pay my bills with it." (Until you are a well paid working actors that is).

So how do you become a well paid working actor? First, you have to get an audition, then you have to get a callback, and then you have to nail the call back (1, 2, 3, 4, or 5 of them) and then you get into the final running for the job and have to book the job! Once you get into the audition room its ALL about your audition skills. It is not about your talent because there are talented people all over Los Angeles and the majority of them aren't booking the jobs. The actors who have a strong audition technique to go along with strong acting techniques book the jobs. The skills go hand in hand.

COMMERCIAL AUDITION TRAINING

How may hours a week do you take On-Camera audition classes and Cold Reading class? How many hours in the last 365 days have you taken On-camera audition classes and Cold reading classes? I hope your answer is at least 1-2 classes per week and minimum of 200 hours per year.

If you are serious about becoming a working actor, then you need to get serious about becoming an expert at auditioning. Don't even think of "winging it" - that's a recipe for failure and you will likely be one of the thousands that flock back home after a failed attempt of trying to make it in Hollywood. Don't let that happen to you. You have talent, don't be ;lazy, cocky, or arrogant and think you can do it without very specific training. You can't, unless you want to be a broke actor who has to make their living from their day job.

If you a have Commercial Agent you should be taking an on-camera Commercial audition class every week with any of following expert teachers: (If it was me I would take one right after the other so in 2 years I would be 100% confident in my audition techniques, which would make my agent 100% confident in me)

Judy Kain
Carolyne Barry
Francine Selkirk
Stuart K Robinson
Scott Sedita
Terry Berland
Killian McHugh

I would read many books on auditioning, including:
"Breaking Into Commercials" by Terry Berland
"Making It In Hollywood" by Scott Sedita
"How To Get The art Without Falling Apart" by Margie Haber
"Hit The Ground Running" by Carolyne Barry
"How To Break Into Show Business; Secrets Of A Hollywood Talent Manager" by Wendy Alane Wright


THEATRICAL AUDITION TRAINING

If you have aspirations to work in television film (and by film I mean not student films), you need to have SERIOUS audition techniques. That's what separates the big boys from the wannabes. Novices without intensive scene study, audition technique and cold reading training fall apart along the way because they do not have solid audition skills to keep them in the game. A working actor has master of the audition room. They know who they are, what they have to sell, what is unique about them, how to break down a character quickly, how to play the opposites, how to make bold choices, not safe ones (and they know the difference between the two.) They also know the appropriate ways to interact with Casting Directors, how to dress for auditions, for the callback, when to make changes, when not to. Your audition techniques need to be as familiar and feel as natural to you as your breathing.

Here are some of the most common complaints Casting Directors have about actors in the audition room. Quotes are from the book: "Getting The Part" 33 Professional Casting Director Tell You How To Get Work in Theater, Films, Commercials and TV" by Judith Searle

"The biggest mistake actors make sometimes is stating anything negative before they have begun. I have found that no matter what you say thereafter to try and win back favor, the director has formed an impression and most of the time you can not get him (or her) to think differently. And it doesn't mean the person in not a good actor. But half of it is the acting, and half of it is the way the other person feels." - Pam Dixon, Casting Director

It's terrible when actors come in unprepared. Actors don't read the scripts when they are available. "They do not bother to take responsibility. You can make excuses, but you hinder yourself when you do things like that. You're not taking advantage of the things that are presented to you." Al Oronato, Casting Director

"I hate when actors come in for an audition loaded with props." - Barbara Claman, Casting Director

A lot of people are disturbed when actors come in and say, 'do you mind if I have two minutes to prepare for this?' Don't do that. Come in prepared to do it. People are looking at two things in auditions, They're not only looking at your talent, they're looking to see whether or not you're going to make problems." - Stanley Soble, Casting Director

Not being genuine. "The slate needs to be simple. I wouldn't pitch myself, like in music, more than a half step above how happy I feel on that particular day. You know what I am saying? Sometimes people come in and go "hiiiiii!" (With yards and yards of teeth.) You know they don't mean it; you know they're not feeling it. Some directors are so cruel - they just fast-forward from the slate. They don't look at the performance. So you could have given the greatest performance of your life on tape, but if they hated your slate you're gone. -Danny Goldman, Casting Director.

"Don't hang out too long. It's a business. Everybody's got a limited amount of time. Get in, do your thing, get out. Present yourself the best way possible: make sure your clothes are fresh, make sure you have a fresh face on, you are well mannered, you are polite to everybody - and just do your thing. I find it terribly disarming when an actor comes in - in character, because you don't know what that person's like and the camera is not always rolling. And if this person is in character, you have no idea who they are. So I like to see a line of demarcation between the person who comes in and the performance. Probably the biggest mistake actors make is when they start off on a scene, find themselves floundering because they've lost concentration, and keep going because they are afraid to stop. You have to stop yourself and say, "I'm sorry. I want to start again." - Pamela Basker, Casting Director

"They talk too much. I think it's nervous talk. There's never anything wrong with an actor asking a question that is pertinent to the material before them, discussing an approach to the material - making it concise and moving along. But a lot of times actors are too chatty. They are trying to ingratiate themselves and for that purpose, for the audition purpose, believing that saying the words effectively is what is going to get them the job. Seventy-five percent of the time the reason an actor is not chosen for a job has nothing to do with their skills. So most of the time I think your concentration should be on preparing and looking at an audition as an opportunity to act, an opportunity to show (us) that you belong in the business because we do so many projects that if you want it and you're working in the right way at it, it will happen." - Eugene Blythe

Lateness. Never - I repeat, never - be late to read for a casting director in a studio, for producers or writers, because if you keep them waiting they're not going to be in a good mood when you are seeing them. - Robin Nassif, Former Head Of Comedy Casting at ABC, Talent Agent

"I think the biggest mistake actors make is not respecting themselves enough. And that includes trying to do what you think is wanted rather than what your instincts are telling you to do. Caring too much about getting the job has a tendency to undermine your work. I think if you are good your work will ultimately be recognized. I think actors who get into a comfortable place with that in themselves bring that into an audition. They are not apologetic, they are not overly solicitous, they're not angry. They're just good and they know it." - Lacy Bishop, Casting Director

"Not taking enough time to prepare and being late...and being harried and having their minds somewhere else - on the next audition, or the fact they're going to get a ticket, or the fight they just had with their girlfriend. The inability to concentrate on the job at hand - the audition, that moment. When you're dealing with this kind of money, you can't let the fact that you didn't get any sleep the night before or somebody flushed your cat down the toilet or your car is totaled get in the way. Your job is to make these people (in the audition room) feel comfortable. They want you to be good. - Beverly Long, Casting Director

The biggest mistake is not understanding what an audition is. The audition really is about only the part at the moment, and performing at a level that can convince the director you are the person for that role. Auditions can't be attempts. They have to be choices carried out, and you have to give the impression that you can deliver. People who are not known (by casting) have to gain that assurance, that trust." - Jay Binder, Casting Director

If you liked this information leave a comment! Visit and "like" me on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/#!/pages/WAW-Entertainment/108466172546413 or follow me on Twitter @WAW_wendy FREE! FREE! FREE! FREE! FREE!

Get 3 FREE chapters of my new book "Secrets Of A Hollywood Talent Manager." It includes my secret list of the most important casting directors that you should meet! Just sign up below.


Sign up now for 3 FREE chapters of my new book "Secrets Of A Hollywood Talent Manager!"



We respect your email privacy
Email Marketing by AWeber
Wendy Alane Wright Smith
The Hollywood Talent Manager
WAW ENTERTAINMENT
wawentertainment@yahoo.com

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Top 3 Ways to Get A Talent Agent


 
Wendy Alane Wright with Talent Agent Fatmata Kamara of Abrams Artists Agency

Do you want to get a Theatrical Agent's attention? Here's one of my favorite secrets; Start getting CALLBACKS!

#1 GET CALLBACKS
What is a Call Back? A Call Back is what you get when you do a great job in your audition. Actors get call backs to come back in and read a 2nd or 3rd time for producers, directors, studios and networks. Getting a Callback is VERY IMPORTANT and means you did something right in the first audition that the Casting Directors liked, and they think the big wigs will like it too. So, Actors go back in and do the exact same thing they did in the 1st audition to give other people a chance to see what the Casting Director saw.

Actors who get callbacks are closer to actually getting the job than the actors who did not get a call back. Usually a Casting Director will see 20-100 people for each role in the pre-read  (audition) and only a handful of actors will be called back. You want to be one of those. When you are getting a lot of callback you are seriously in the running for a job and are more likely to make an agent money than the actors who are not getting call backs.

When Agents sign actors, they see within a year which actors are getting callbacks. The actors who are not getting call backs are typically dropped  by their agents at the end of 1 year. So if you are getting a lot of call backs they would much rather have you on their roster than the actors who are  not getting callbacks. Make sense? If you are getting callbacks and their own clients are not...you will become very interesting to agents.

So lets get started....

#2 SUBMIT YOURSELF LIKE CRAZY AND BUILD YOUR RESUME
Start building your resume with THEATER. Here is a resume of a 16 year old in Kentucky. She is serious about becoming an actor and her resume PROVES it. Look at the training she has had and the theater she has done. How does yours compare?  Click on this link to see Alicen's resume. This is what you need to start building your resume into.


Then, submit yourself like crazy for projects on Actors Access, La Casting and Backstage - get out there auditioning for Low Budget Films, Webisodes, and Shorts. You will book some along the way. Remember to always add these important credits to your resume to continue to build your credibility as an actor.

(SIDE NOTE: You really should be subscribing to Backstage.com if you aren't already. It is full of audition notices and chock full of acting business articles that will greatly expand your understand of this business. If you are not constantly reading how this business works you will have a difficult time navigating it. Remember, you are a business owner. You are the CEO of your company. And YOU are the product. Nobody runs a business on a wing and a prayer. Do your research.)

To continue...so your out auditioning like crazy and booking some jobs. Then what? Keep track of your callbacks. Every single time you get a callback send a postcard to your target agents letting them know you got a callback for...and write name the specific project and the casting director. Do not be vague. Don't say "I am getting a lot of callbacks" Instead, be very specific and say:

Hi Mark, I just a callback for "The Prodigy" with casting Director Fern Champion. Would love to meet with you! 


# 3 CONTACT AGENTS 
When YOU are getting callbacks NOW you have something wonderful to offer! It will distinguish you from the pack of wannabe actors who have a dream but no proof of concept. When you are getting callbacks for most of you theatrical auditions that's the time to get an agent. Create a list of 5 - 10 Agents you want to meet. You can create this list by getting the book "THE RIGHT AGENT" from Samuel French Bookstore either online or in Hollywood. The book lists Talent Agencies, agent's names, address and often email. Below each Agency is a description of the types of clients they represent; kids, teens or adults, union or non union. Often they also list what they are specifically looking for right now; 18 to play younger, ethnic looking, character types or leading man, etc.

Read through the entire book, highlight the agencies that may be right for your type! Make a list of 5-10 Agents that are accepting submissions from your type and send them your Headshot, Resume and demo reel to introduce yourself. Put links to your website and/or IMDB page. Be sure to tell them what acting jobs you have booked, call backs you have gotten recently and where you are training. Then follow up with that same agent every 3 months and continue to tell them what acting jobs you have booked and the call backs you have gotten recently. It often takes several contacts with an agent before they will be willing to see you. You have to prove to them that you are booking and getting callbacks and can MAKE THEM MONEY. This is a business and they are not a charity. They want actors who can make them money, period.

SHOWCASE I always suggest if your target agents are attending showcases... go perform in front of them. Nothing makes an impact like a live acting performance. They need to see you do great work. Make sure you choose a light, or funny scene to present. Nothing heavy or dark. A good laugh goes along way. Get coached on your scene before you put it up. Showcase for these agents so they can see your acting live then follow up with a phone call or email asking of you can set up a meeting with them, If you don't ask you won't get anywhere. You won't always get a yes but you will only get a yes if you ask.

If you are in Los Angeles you can coach with these great coaches! (myself included) 

Wendy Alane Wright  wawentertainment@yahoo.com
Gloria Garayua             Gloria Garayua@gmail.com
Kimberly Crandall        Kimberely_Crandall@hotmail.com
Josh Latzer                    Joshlatzer@yahoo.com
Rodney Rowland          Rodrlan@aol.com

SKYPE COACHING - If you are outside of Los Angeles:
Gloria Garayua and Wendy Alane Wright do Skype Coaching. So you can work with us from anywhere, just email visit out websites for rates and times. secretsofahollywoodtalentmanager.com and  gloriagarayua.com

FOR MORE HELP GETTING AN AGENT WATCH MY VIDEO:
  "WHAT AGENTS REALLY WANT"
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7NCpXqScvIY&list=UUN3nGR_nF4g1Qo5lJl4NxAg

Good luck. And remember, follow your dreams and don't let ANYONE discourage you or get in your way. Have faith in yourself and keep on going. You can do it!

FREE! FREE! FREE! FREE! FREE!
Get 3 FREE chapters of my new book "Breaking Into Show Business; Secrets Of A Hollywood Talent Manager." 


Sign up now for 3 FREE chapters of my new book "Secrets Of A Hollywood Talent Manager!"



We respect your email privacy
Email Marketing by AWeber
If you liked this information leave a comment!
Subscribe to my Secrets Of A Hollywood Talent Manager TV You Tube Channel with over 200 FREE Videos! And follow me on Twitter @WAW_wendy

Sunday, March 10, 2013

How Bad Do You Want A Career in Show Business?



Wendy Alane Wright

Wendy Alane Wright is a Hollywood talent manager and the president of WAW Entertainment. Her clients have appeared on television networks such as ABC, NBC, TNT, CBS, Comedy Central, BIO, Lifetime, and more. They have booked TV shows including “Modern Family,” “Blackish,” “Extant,” “The Colony,” “Animal Kingdom,” “My Haunted House,” and “Henry Danger,” as well as hundreds of commercials for major spots including Shutterfly, Mercedes, Visa, Taco Bell, Honda, Legos, Hot Wheels, and many more. 
Prior to being a manager and a talent agent at Burn Down Entertainment, Wright assisted many high profile managers, agents, and publicists. For 20 years she was a recording artist, actor, and music producer, and is now the author of five books called, “Secrets of a Hollywood Talent Manager.” Wright teaches the business of acting all over the country and is on the faculty of schools including the New York Studio for Stage and Screen in North Carolina and LA Acting Academy in Phoenix, Arizona. For years she has appeared in numerous magazines, and on radio shows and talk shows including “The Oprah Winfrey Show.”


 Actors, it is so important to see yourself realistically. Recently, I had an actor come to me for representation. He turned out to be a nightmare. He didn't have a reel yet, although he had some footage. He knew 1 casting director in soaps and he directed 2 shorts, one was a music video. So not much going on yet, but I loved his passion. I also liked him personally, his interest in India and helping starving children we shared that cause. I wanted to see him be successful and share his talent at a much greater level. So I took him on. He lasted 4 weeks on my roster. As soon as I started giving him direction, he started bucking my suggestions. His ego came out and the know-it-all attitude was strong. He saw himself as much further along than he was. And sadly, he could not see himself realistically.

I saw him as a beginning actor with no TV credits, no casting director relationships, no reel, average headshots (all things I can change) and 2 shorts under his belt. Shorts no one has ever heard of. Granted, I love that people create shorts and are making an effort to express their creativity in independent projects. I really like that way of working in Hollywood. Not waiting for the opportunities to come to you, but rather forge your own. But, the problem with this actor was, this small bit of work he did made him believe he was Steven Spielberg. (Mr. Speielberg wouldn't act like this fool did ha!)

So this actor got angry when I gave him suggestions, said he didn't need to learn about the business, that he was "a player, a doer and an og." (I don't know what that means.) He was above taking direction, above learning about the business and went on my facebook page criticizing the business end of this business and demanded I get him agent right now. When I told him he wasn't ready for me to take him to any agent, that he wasn't seeing himself realistically - he began swearing at me, and calling me filthy names, even the "C" word. Of course I terminated him from my roster immediately.

Actors it is important that you see yourself accurately in this business. You are a unique and individual commodity. Your job is to learn your brand and figure out how to sell it, better than anyone else. If you haven't put hundreds of hours into your marketing, forget it. You won't be able to compete. You also need to stay humble and work hard because there are thousands upon thousands of other actors trying to get work in this town. There are over 165,000 members of SAG-AFTRA, 49,000 members of Actors Equity, and a few hundred thousand non-union actors all trying to work their way up. You have to be humble. Nothing is owed you. You have to prove to talent buyers that you can do what you say you can do. No one is going to take you at your word.

Making a living in this business is a gift. It comes to a handful of very lucky, well trained and hardworking people. Bulldozing over people with a big ego, demands, entitlement issues and not much to show for it isn't going to get you anywhere. Actors need to be in acting class training all the time. It's one of the biggest mistake new actors make all the time. They are not in class. Agents don't take actors who are not in class seriously. You need to have incredible audition skills in order to beat out the thousands of people you are always competing with. You cannot walk into an audition room and think just based on who you are that you can compete at a professional level with people who have trained and studied and know what they are doing in an audition room. I can't stress this enough. New actors whine about not having an agent, or their agent isn't getting them out enough...they just want to get into the room and audition. But without impeccable audition skills you are not going to get the callback, and you are not going to get the role. And if you are not ready, you won't be called in again by that Casting Director, maybe for years. You need to understand this business and your place in it realistically. If you don't have an agent who cares? Use this time to become a better actor, do theater, get your audition skills to their highest level. Because even if you get an agent, it's so temporary. If you don't have great audition skills and you don't book, they are going to drop you, CD's wont call you in and agents will stop sending you out.

If you are serious about making a living as an actor. Get into an exceptional acting class with a great teacher. Take more cold reading and audition classes that you think you possibly can. Figure out your type and learn how to market it. Your headshots, your demo reel should show your type and how you want to be cast. If they don't it will be ineffective. If your strong suit is to play a "take no shit, cut throat criminal" your demo reel should not be student films, shorts and features of you playing a teacher, or a basketball player with a bad knee. You need footage of you being a cut throat bad ass. And the footage needs to be great.

If you are play a woman raped, or a drug addict and gravitate to really meaty roles that require depth of emotional, your demo reel can not be scenes of you playing the girl next door, or the happy friend who lost her dog. Your demo reel needs to have footage that shows you can get gritty, dirty, emotional. Your media is not supposed to be a compilation of every practice role you have taken on while getting experience and credits. There is a process to building a career. You do the student films and shorts to get experience and use that to convince indie directors you have enough experience to take on more. Then you do some stronger roles that reflect your type and keep taking on more of those types of roles. You graduate in a sense from just doing anything you can get, to doing roles that show what you do best. Then you take THAT footage and begin a reel. Until you have that footage to show an agent, you are just another wannabe actor who says they can play anything, blah, blah, blah.

Your media has to be clear and concise because in this day of technology, companies that create great demo footage, actors who produce their own high quality projects, one click and I can see someone else's great reel - other actors are presenting strong media to talent buyers that simply blow you out of the water. You walk in with your student film footage of you chasing a dog and you will not be taken seriously. This nightmare actor I mentioned above said his strong type was "tough guys" but none of his footage had him playing a tough guy. He also said he payed the sensitive boyfriend yet, he had no footage of him playing a boyfriend at all. But he wants me to get him a good agent today. Yikes. With what? The wrong media, nothing to show for and an egotistical, rude and lousy attitude? Oh vey.

It's a good thing I have a roster filled with humble, loving, hardworking and talented people who make me remember why I love this business so much. I always look forward to achieving great things with them.

Actors this is not a business you just "wing it" in. You really have to understand how it all works if you want to be a Series Regular, or if you want to be a Movie Star, even if you want to be employed and earn your living as an actor and not need a day job to pay the bills. I hear actors complain all the time, I don't have enough money for headshots, so they shoot with their friends at school for free. Crap. One of my amazingly talented and incredible clients Ron, lived in his car for a year so he could afford to attend the New York Film Academy and get outstanding shots. I love him. He has shot 19 films in the last 2 years and played the lead in half of them. He reminds me of James Dean who said he would rather act than eat, and he went without eating often. I even fed Ron when he came to my office last week. Some actors today are just lazy. They think things are going to be handed to them. They think mediocre headshots are better than nothing or I went to college for acting, why do I need more classes? Wake up! This business is going to go on with, or without you. And most likely without you unless you learn how to play the game. If you don't you are never going to be noticed.

Get into a type class and find out how others really see you. Take many hours of actors marketing classes to learn how to present yourself professionally and correct to type. Your media has to be great in this day and age. Get outstanding headshots. Create a powerful, strong demo reel. Follow a target list of casting directors and make sure they get to know you and what you can do. Do scenes in agent showcases and casting workshops that reflect your type and the type of role you want to be cast in. Understand you are a beginner and always learning. Lose the ego. Get grateful for every bit of help you get along the way. Work harder than every other actor you know. Don't burn bridges. Realize you have a long way to go...so make the journey fun and help others along the way. And if you get real lucky, you just may make a living at this incredible profession that you are lucky enough to have been born with the talent to do.

As always follow your dreams. God gave you talent so you could use and share it with the world. Don't get in your own way.

FREE! FREE! FREE! FREE! FREE!
Get 3 FREE chapters of my new book "How To Break Into Show Business; Secrets Of A Hollywood Talent Manager." It includes my secret list of the most important casting directors that you should meet! Just sign up below.


Sign up now for 3 FREE chapters of my new book "How To Break Into Show Business; Secrets Of A Hollywood Talent Manager!"



We respect your email privacy
Email Marketing by AWeber
Wendy Alane Smith
Talent Manager
WAW Entertainment
wawentertainment@yahoo.com

Sunday, March 3, 2013

If You Believe It, And Work Hard, You Can Achieve A Career in Show Business!

Wendy Alane Wright is a Hollywood Talent Manager with WAW Entertainment. Her clients have appeared in numerous national commercials, movies, webisodes, short films, and on television networks such as ABC, NBC, Comedy Central, BIO, Lifetime, plus many more. Previous to being a Manager and a Talent Agent at Burn Down Entertainment, she assisted many high profile Managers, Agents and Publicists in the careers of Neil Patrick Harris, Johnny Galecki, Sarah Michelle Geller, The Four Tops, The Bee Gees, Meatloaf, Whoopi Goldberg, Steve Guttenberg, The Cranberries Michael Jackson, Barbra Streisand, Kenny Rogers, and Neil Diamond. Wendy is also a Recording Artist, Actress, Author and Music Producer all  giving her a 360-degree perspective of the industry.

I was listening to Casting Director Amy Jo Berman talk about the time she coached an actress who landed a series regular role. Amy Jo said, this actress became a series regular because she had been planning on it for years. She had visualized it and had determined nothing was going to get in the way of her getting it. In fact, everything single choice the actress made in her life was to lead to that outcome. In her mind she already was a series regular, as if it were her truth. She believed she was meant to do this. Amy Jo said that kind of focus and specificity is why people reach their goals and become successful.

I thought back about my own career to see if that concept applied, and found, yes it did. I had that kind of focus for a very long time, from age 10-35. When I first decided I wanted to hear my voice singing on records I was about 10 years old. I knew that was what I was going to do. Everything I did from then on in my life was to advance that goal for myself. I practiced singing 3-4 hours every day for about 7 years. I went to counseling to overcome feelings of inadequacy, and did insight seminars twice and EST to gain more personal power for myself and to become less fearful. I entered singing contests, I studied voice at college and finally packed my bags, left home and moved to LA to sing. I got a job in the office of an entertainment company so I could learn how everything works and get close to people who could help me. I had no doubt I was going to be a singer. I had no doubt I would sing on records. I wasn't going to allow any other option. In fact, there was no possibility for me not to do it. I was going to make it happen, no matter what. Period. This is the kind of focus and mind set Amy Jo Berman was talking about.

I looked for opportunities, and I took every opportunity that came my way. I studied with one of the best singing coaches in the world, Seth Riggs. (He also taught Michael Jackson, Barbra Streisand, Ray Charles, Tina Turner, and Anita Baker.) I auditioned, I met producers in banks and sang for them, I ran into execs at Hollywood parties and sang for them. People were going to see what I could do because I was singer, I had talent and I knew I was good. Period. I knew I was good enough, (if not better than most) and I knew I was good enough to be on records. So I was going to be. I had 3 jobs and sometimes no money for food. But I had a goal to fulfill and I wasn't going to stop until I reached it. After I sang on over 65 records, (well they turned to cds shortly after I started singing professionally) I started writing and producing songs for other artists. I wrote a single for Dutch artist Tatjana Simic that went Platinum. Then I decided I wanted to sing with a live band and sang with three amazing live bands for a few years. I opened for big artists. I wanted to go on tour so I did. I wanted my music to be on TV, in commercials and to release a couple of cds of my own. I did all of that. I had been working as a professional singer for 13 years and one day, I no longer had the desire to sing like I used to.

At first I was mortified and confused, because that hunger had driven me and defined me since I was 10, and all of a sudden I no longer had it. I was sad at first, but I evolved into an amazing place where I decided I would rather help everyone else achieve their goals. I could share all my knowledge with young new talent who had the same dreams I had. Now I have a new hunger, to see each of them become successful in their goals. It drives me, keeps me awake at night and working in my office all hours of the nights. I love it.

I truly believe you have to have that kind of hunger to drive you to succeed. You have to see that you have no other options. Your passion for your talent and what makes you happy has to be all consuming. It has to be everything you are, everything you think, want and exist for.

When you have that kind of focus, you will always find a way. Quitting, or any other form of self sabotage like procrastination, fear, laziness etc, are just not acceptable and are qualities that can ruin everything for you. You must get rid of those at all costs. Use positive affirmations, go to therapy, pray, mediate, surrounds yourself with positive people who are doing the same things you are and believe in you. There is a saying, "The 5 people you spend the most time with will determine how far you will go in your life." Make sure you choose them wisely.

I lot of people "say" they want something, but do they really? Or are they just giving it a "try?" There is a huge difference.

I saw myself as a signer. I saw myself in the studio making records. I saw myself on stage performing for thousand of people. I saw myself being excited and happy doing it. I knew I was meant to be on stage singing. That's who I was already in my mind before I ever did it. I was a professional singer in my mind. I think you have to have that kind of confidence in who you are, passion and determination to succeed in this business. I had some insecurities, we all do. But I never had insecurities about who I was going to be. That kind of passion will have you talking to people you would normally be intimidated to speak to. It will have you going for it, when it is scary. It will get you up in the morning and make you say, okay what next? What can I do today to meet someone who can help me? It will drive you to meet other singers, to get into the studio, to write a song, to record someone else's songs, to contact producers, to practice singing.

Of course the same focus and determination applies to acting, or sports, or any other dream you have. If you can see it, really see it in the depths of your soul, you can be it, you can achieve it.

I say step back and take a real honest look at your life. If you have anybody around you who is trying to bring you down, or squash your spirit or your dreams, get rid of them. If they are a family member, move them off to the side for a bit. If they are a boyfriend or girlfriend, they may not be the right one for you. You need people around you who believe in your dream with you. You will always believe in your dream more than anyone else, because it's your dream. But when you can see it, others can see it too.

My advice is to go within. Look deep in your heart. What do you want? What is driving you? Then be true to your heart and listen to what it says. Maybe your true passion is in the entertainment field, maybe it isn't. Follow your heart and your own path. Don't do anything because of other people's expectations of you. Be true to yourself. It's your life. You can make anything happen if you just believe.

If being a successful actress or singer is your goal, decide that nothing is going to get in the way of that for you. Nothing. You are going to be successful at this. Period. Stay focused, stay committed, never stop. Keep believing. See yourself there. You are there. Do it!

If you found this helpful or inspiring leave a comment below. I love to hear from people. Check out my other blogs too. If you have any questions go ahead and ask. I want to help you :) Follow me on Twitter @wendyalane1

And as always, make your life everything you dream it can be. You are worth it!

FREE! FREE! FREE! FREE! FREE!
Get 3 FREE chapters of my new book "How To Break Into Show Business; Secrets Of A Hollywood Talent Manager." It includes my secret list of the most important casting directors that you should meet! Just sign up below.


Sign up now for 3 FREE chapters of my new book "How To Break Into Show Business; Secrets Of A Hollywood Talent Manager."



We respect your email privacy
Email Marketing by AWeber
If you liked this information leave a comment! Follow me on Twitter @WAW_wendy