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"Love Failure" And Other Tips That Don't Seem Like Tips, But Are Pretty Good Tips.

I’m currently taking classes at UCLA Extension for producing. Meeting wonderful classmates and teachers, learning about myself and this business, and having a different perspective on what it takes to get film and TV made.


Tonight, my post-production teacher, editor Tyler Danna gave this advice:


“Learn to love the failure. The wins are few and far between, that if you learn to love the failure and what it teaches you, it helps you understand that it’s all about the journey, and not the prize.”


Yup. I found an ace I could keep. I love my auditions that don’t book. Obviously, I love when I win, but I also love the creative process, and these little pieces of craft that I send out to be considered by casting directors that are a snapshot of the artist I am today.


This week, we announced a show we've been working on, THE CROODS: FAMILY TREE, which will drop on September 23 on Hulu and Peacock. Getting to play the role of Grug has been a lifetime dream come true, and booking it is is a hole in one.


The thing is, I've taken countless swings at that pin and it finally went in. And you have to learn to love THE SWING, not the result of where the ball lands.


I play GRUG on THE CROODS: FAMILY TREE, heading to HULU and PEACOCK on September 23rd

Here's some other tidbits that keep me warm on the cold dark nights of the soul….


QUIT WHEN IT ISN’T FUN - I credit my fantastic director at Disneyland, Sue Hamilton, for this one. If you aren’t loving it, having a great time doing the work, what is the point? When the wind leaves your sails, it’s worth sitting on the bench and either figuring out why or calling it a day. There is no shame, no judgement, no guilt associated with this decision. There are so many folks who commit to this path and stay on it for reasons outside of the pure joy of it. When the winds change follow them. Be Neil Young about it.


Neil Young was doing a tour with Stephen Stills and mid tour, he up and quit. Sent Stephen a telegram saying something to the effect of, “Things that start spontaneously can end the same way. I’m out. Eat a peach. Neil.”


Trudging forward because you said you were gonna usually doesn’t lead to the result you hope. If you’re heart leaves it, examine why and you need to change directions, do so. The only mistake is investing time into something your heart has left.


BRUSH YOUR TEETH - Nothing worse than doing auditions and work in your home studio with crappy breath. Plus, freshening up your mouth with reinvigorate your reads. I will sometimes run stuck on something, leave the booth to go brush or drink some water, step outside, get a new perspective.


Nothing feels like a new perspective better than minty fresh goodness.


GO TO BED - My late night reads are not as good as my morning reads. Even if I have something due before 9a. If it' ain’t done by 11p, I shouldn’t’ be doing it…. too many times I break this rule, but if I treat my VO auditions like the on camera ones and them done in the daylight, I’m better off, more creative and more ENERGIZED.


Now look, if you are a vampire, and do your best work at 2a, don’t let me stop you with this advice. It’s more about finding your power time of day and working then.  (I’m driving my daughter to school at 7a, so I need my 7 hours, and my work should be done when I am at my greatest self. When we were working at Second City, that would be from 1a-3a.)


Any other suggestions? I’d love to hear additional tips that don’t sound like tips, but are actually really great tips. Please share below!

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