Michael Apollo Lira
What are we entitled to?
If you or somebody you love have a history of talent and acting, you may be entitled to...
It ain't mesothelioma compensation, that's for darn sure.
So what are we entitled to?
Well, unfortunately it turns out, not a whole lot.
You can work your butt off and make no money on some days. This is just one of those worlds where very little is handed to you in most avenues. Most success in the world of voiceover and acting comes down to plain old diligence/insanity and a LOT of hustle. It certainly never hurts to maybe know a person or two - a big part of successful career moves also come down to having connections, but beyond that you also need to be able to deliver something on a competitive level.
I had a friend - AMAZING and incredibly talented in the world of acting and voiceover. They are dynamic, skilled, brilliant and just so naturally fantastic at everything I've seen them do. They acquired representation through an agency, started booking some work, and becoming involved in the professional world of talent out there. But over time, this person became bitter and resentful of a small handful of things that would eventually lead to the severance of their relationship with their agent. Of note, they were unhappy that they were unable to make a full time living with the work brought to them by the agency. They worked hard, they made themselves available to the agency's needs and auditions, but there were simply not enough gigs booked to launch into bigger projects.
That's frustrating. We're all here because we want success.
Success in the world of voiceover and acting often requires casting a broad net. This can mean being represented by multiple agencies, having memberships with P2P websites, seeking out and networking with producers and content creators through various websites like LinkedIn, Instagram, or Twitter, and even creating a web presence by building your own website and regularly maintaining its blog.
I'M LOOKING AT YOU, JOSHUA ALEXANDER
In a world where your success depends on your own hustle, you're going to want a few baskets to put your eggs in. And while it's great having an agent, that agent might be holding a lot of other peoples' baskets while juggling only a few eggs. And though there will be days when one well may be dry, there may be others that aren't. That seems to be the nature of the ebb and flow in voiceover.
Crikey, that's enough metaphors.
Diversify is what I'm trying to say here! Cast that broad net and utilize as many avenues as you can to acquire clients and work, and get yourself out there! Network! Join communities, talk to other talent and cheer them on, see how they're doing, what they're up to, and find out what's working for them. Share what's worked for you. Uplift the profession. Your presence can add value just by being a part of it all!
Alright, so to sum it up!
Things you can do to cast a broader net:
Seek representation from multiple agents/agencies
Utilize P2P websites for additional sources of auditions
Contact producers and content creators - offer to make their lives easier/simpler with your services
Run a website and blog
Network and connect with VO communities
You are entitled to:
Not a lot, unfortunately :\
Some mercy and grace, perhaps?
But! You can be a part of forming a strong, healthy, and involved community! YOU can be a part of creating a culture of standards / expectations for the general voiceover population. And THAT is a very powerful thing!
Get out there, tell some stories, and win some prizes or something cool!