He responded, “How to not get bitter.”
We laughed darkly.
There are multitudes of things to be bitter about in this industry, and multitudes of ways to be bitter about them. And if I tried to write about ALL of it, I’d be here for months. But I have an audition tomorrow morning, so here’s a little about Rejection. It’s like, numero uno on the Bitter List for lots of actors. But it doesn’t have to be. It’s not top on my list. This is how I break it down for myself, and how I move on without harboring a lot of resentment:
First of all, I try not to look at it as REJECTION, but as just not getting a job. Not getting cast is not a slur against me; it’s about the director’s vision. The director’s choice is her or his choice and I respect that. If they like me, GREAT! I hope I’m what they are looking for (and so do they!), but if I’m not, I haven’t lost anything.
I give it my blessing. I’m no worse off than when I went into the audition. I don’t always see their vision, but then, it’s not my production and I don’t have to see it.
98.9% of the time, not getting a job is not about me. It’s not about my who I am, about my favorite food, which Avenger I’d rather date (Captain America, hello.) or my ideal vacation spot. So there’s no need to take it personally. I say hello, enjoy my time performing in the audition, and continue being my own person my own way.
75% of the time, it’s not over anything I could have changed. I’m talking about my height, my age, my bone structure, my eye color, my skin tone, my build. I know who I am, I know what I look like. If they wanted a tan teenage blonde, or a mid-thirties African American woman, that’s okay! Again, that’s not on me. Nothing personal.
I will be honest, I still get bent out of shape over not getting a part. I’m only human. But it’s a very rare occurrence.
Hopefully this helps some of you if you find yourself frustrated or aggrieved, and you can discover a better taste than bitter.