Jan 26, 2004

Professional Rejection

Professional Rejection. The Actor's Daily Pill.

January 22, 2004

To: (agent Name and address omitted)
(but they're in Sherman Oaks
On Van Nuys Blvd.)

Dear ( ):

I got your Xeroxed "Dear John" letter that the agency is dropping me. Hey, no hard feelings. The day you sent me, a 5'5" 118-pound woman, to audition as a construction worker on a failing cable drama, I knew you didn't get me. But as a parting gift, I would like to offer you a few suggestions to help your business look more professional.

1. Use real stationery: real, 25 lb. bond paper with matching envelopes. Staples copy paper and Rite Aid envelopes don't work as formal correspondence. If you can't afford embossed stationery like other agencies; at least --

2. Use a letterhead. A letterhead is an identifying logo and your business address at the top of the page. It just looks tacky to have a Xerox with no sender identified. Especially if the Xerox went in crooked. And no, that rubber stamp doesn't cut it.

3. "How do I get a letterhead?" Easy. Scan your logo as a jpeg. Then you can insert into any document you want: stationery, letters, labels, you name it. If you don't know what a jpeg is, refer to your recent downloads from lesbianspankinferno.com.

4. For the love of God, Buy a copy of Microsoft Word. One disc will install on all the office computers. Your Microsoft Works barely has spell check. You cannot compete in the 21st Century if you are still using WORKS in DOS.

5. Spelling. Your rejection letter misspelled the word "for." Not even the common there/their/they're conundrum, but a simple three-letter word. "We will be closed foe the holidays." "Foe?" Who's your typist, P. Diddy?

Remember, it's not only who you are on the phone, but also what leaves your office, that is a reflection on you. The fact that I am leaving your office is also a reflection on you, but that's another story.

Speaking of phones: Hire a receptionist. The automated system that plays the same tinny music loop I hear when I call Fed Ex just screams C-LIST! And the prompt, "Please speak your name so I can announce who's calling," only reinforces this industry's wild insecurity, that the Called is deciding whether the Caller is worthy enough to be answered. God forbid Mr. Spielberg ever rang your office.

While you were not sending me out this past year, I was writing and performing at various venues in LA and New York. You know the postcards I sent? Or did the automated postal chute redirect them to "actor crap?" I performed alongside several TV writer-producers, (the ones I called and left a message for you to send them my stuff but you never did). Long and the short, I've gotten some writing gigs and I'm performing my solo show at a big theater in Hollywood. So I'll be fine.

Thanks for everything, ( ). Especially for teaching me what every actor needs to know: you cannot wait for someone else to get you work. You have to get it yourself. More importantly, you can't expect anyone to get you. You have to get yourself. Otherwise you'll be sent out to play construction workers.

Respectfully, Well, sort of,

Susan Isaacs

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