Monday, 8 September 2014

Self-Guided Studies - Stepping Out of Actor Shoes

Ginger Soup for the Actor's Soul - Self Guided Studies: Stepping Out of Actor Shoes with Taylor Hastings and cat

There comes a time in every actor's life, where everything sucks and you aren't getting any auditions and you haven't booked a job in over a year and you now have a day job that requires you to wear a kilt and you bang your head against the wall and wonder why you didn't just get a stupid degree and become a stupid accountant like your dad said you should!

Yes. Every actor's life. I am not alone in this, don't even pretend you've not been here, or are not here right now!

These are the times when it is not enough to rely on acting as your only creative outlet. Acting is an art, it is something we are passionate about and it can truly fulfil us. When we're not actively working on it, or immersed in it in any way, we can start to feel empty. Believe me, I'm in the trenches of it right now. And the feeling is not a good one. But I've decided instead of spending a ton of money on schooling to get a job that will eventually leave me emptier than I am now, I am going to find myself another temporary outlet.

Before I decided that acting would be my career path, I had many different interests and passions. Besides wanting to be Batman or a unicorn equestrian, I had a long list of potential job possibilities - as any kid does. At 7, I actually called the Vancouver Aquarium asking how I might go about becoming a dolphin trainer. After the nice lady on the phone dashed my dream of becoming one immediately, I continued exploring my other options. One, in particular, that I had settled on for a long time was journalism.

Pens and pencils and highlighters for Taylor Hastings writing challengeI have always loved writing, and as a fairly opinionated and indignant teenager, journalism and editorial writing seemed like the perfect fit for me. I wrote a couple of accusatory articles in the school paper, and may have gotten a little carried away. And though I still considered that path after high school, it never became a fully realised dream for me. However, now as I search for some sort of challenge that allows me to step out of my actor shoes, my mind immediately wanders back over to writing.

So, I'd like to invite you to join me on this self-guided study of mine, into the world of creative writing. I am challenging myself to learn as much about narrative writing, and to finish a first draft of a novel - something I have wanted to do for a long time. I'm hoping that having this to focus on, not only will I learn something new, but I can release some of the stress I have from waiting by the phone and perhaps even improve my acting along the way! I'll be posting updates of my progress on here as motivation to keep on going!

I'd also like to invite all of you to explore what else fulfils you outside of acting; be it writing, painting, some sort of sports thing (clearly not my path), or any other passion you can think of! Post it on here, or even submit an article that I can post here about your experience! Send me videos of your passion and exploration of music, or artwork or just your thoughts on it all! Let's get out of this rut together!