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Free Western

On this, the 18th day of March 2024, I come to you having just finished writing for the day. Unless, of course, you count this.

I recently took a seminar with a very successful Casting Director (I capitalize for effect), or CD. She was head of casting at HBO for 14 years and knows her stuff. I know this because I've taken classes from her before and her advice works. Not only does her advice work, she's refreshingly honest. By that I mean she's not just hawking her wares. She actually said "no" when someone asked if her program was right for something for which it wasn't right. I know, right?

This seminar was free. Especially in "Hollywood," free means devoid of any real content. "Buy my program/t-shirt/attitude, whatever," is what it usually means. Honesty and integrity are moving targets. But, not her. She gave real, practical advice that took me years to glean on my own. Absolutely free.I know, right?

Totally refreshing. Oh, to be young and naive and find her completely free seminar a revelation. I'm not. Young and naive, not anymore. (And, do I REALLY want to go back to naivete and learn everything over again?) But, for those who are, it was a great entry into the world of modern day auditioning. Don't get me wrong, she had a program to sell. But, the free stuff was valuable. I think that deserves applause.

I hesitate to use her name because I didn't tell her I was doing this. But, she was the head CD at HBO for 14 years. I think you can find out.

I mention this because "Hollywood" constantly surprises me. I admit, when I came to the Southland I expected firey devil worship and human trafficking. Or some such evil. I thought, in my naivete (check), I would be a light in a dark industry. But, "Hollywood" isn't nearly as malevolent as its publicist makes out. I keep finding good, honest, loving people doing good, honest, loving work. Trying to make a living, but trying to make a difference too. Who could ask for anything more?

As I said, I just finished writing. It's a western novel about a woman trying to find her son, stolen by her estranged husband, and her interaction with the Navajo people. I'd guess I'm, maybe, half way through.

A couple months ago, before I started it, I said to my wife, "I think I need to write a western." An idea, well emotion, really, kept bouncing around in my head, and it was time to put it to electronic paper. Sure, I'll print it out when it's done so it will be on real paper, but for now...

Those bouncing ideas are the real nirvana. They keep tugging and tugging until you just have to look 'em straight in the eye. That's where the fun starts.

I find it endlessly fascinating when an idea is put to print. The whole process is an expedition of discovery. Invariably, the place it ends only vaguely resembles what I thought when I started. And, that's fun. And, shouldn't we all have fun?

For now, it's called "Placeholder Western Story." When I finish and settle on a title, I'll let you know.

I had two callbacks the last week or so and haven't heard anything yet. Sometimes, one doesn't hear, but if I do, I'll let you know that too.

All for now. Have a blessed day.


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