Monday, August 17, 2009

Artist Myth #10e: Agents

Myth Ten: If I only had an agent, my worries would be over.
For the longest time, I didn’t understand why I couldn’t’ attract the attention of an agent. It seemed like on paper, at least, I was an agent’s wet dream. I had national reviews in The Washington Post, features in Backstage Magazine and American Theatre Magazine, many interviews on NPR and even a PBS Special. But even when I contacted agents whom I had met and (some who were my friend on Facebook), I seemed to get nothing but the silent treatment.

Then, one day I be-friended an agent and he told me the deal. “Slash,” he said, “I looked at your web site and you look like a really cool guy. But to tell you the truth, I really wouldn’t know what in the hell to do with you. I mean there’s just no market for renaissance men these days. It says you are a playwright, performer, visual artist, jazz musician, alternative rock musician, comedian, educator, etc. (The list was actually longer than this). If you were just a musician, I would know what to do with you. If you were just a comedian I would know what to do with you. But as it stands, I’m left scratching my head. When you pick one area to concentrate on, let me know and I’ll help you out.”

Over the course of the next few months I had what many of you in the creative world define as a “Career Identity Crisis.” To choose one thing made me feel like I would have to cut off my arm or my leg. To make the transition I began to look at others who seemed to do it gracefully.

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