I'm not a gunslinger, though I've played one onstage. :)
I'm sure my family had some cowboys somewhere in the ancestry. We were definitely pioneers! And both sides of the family married Cherokee women. I'm very proud to be connected to that tribe.
For some reason, my Mom, who is a tiny woman like me, wanted to make sure I was trained in firearms, because she thought I should know how to handle a gun "just in case." In case of what? "I don't know," Mom said, "it's just good to be prepared."
I have to tip my hat to her. Being prepared is definitely one of my jobs as an actor. And ironically, my brief training in firearms has come in handy when I've played gun-toting characters like Rita in Lucky Stiff.
I remember trying out a rifle in firearms training, and it knocked me flat on my butt. I had to laugh.
With auditions and (heck!) with life in general, you can feel a little knocked around, ya know? But lately I feel like I'm "back in the saddle again."
I've entered this neat phase where all I'm focused on is going into an audition room to do good work. That's all I want to do.
Yes, a callback would be great. Yes, a job offer would be awesome! But if I go into an audition with that attitude, it's like going to a banquet hungry. You're starving, you're not thinking straight. And I'd rather be like Annie Oakley right now: Little Sure Shot.
I want to be clear about what I need to do for each audition, doing as much research beforehand, and going in with material that shows what I can do in the best way possible.
I feel like I'm there. I'm discovering that when I go in and just do my job, I am free from all the head-trips and can just enjoy the process.
I had an audition yesterday, reading "cold" from the script, and I was so thankful for the classes I've taken on cold-reading. It really is a skill. And each skill requires practice. The more we practice something, the more we can get out of our own way and let our artistry flow.
Ready... aim... fire!
And ironically, I got some amazing feedback from the casting director about my reading, which was unexpected, but wonderfully welcome.
I'd like to tip my hat and say, "Just doing my job, ma'am. Just doing my job." ;)