Well, here we are. We all know what’s going on currently, so I am not going to indulge in it. My primary places of work, Walt Disney World and Universal Resort Orlando, are closed until the end of the month, possibly longer. Thus begins the game of, “How am I going to spend my time wisely?” Keyword is WISELY here. I will probably end up binging some TV shows, but I also want to make the most of this.
I am pulling a lot of inspiration from Actor Aesthetic in what I am deciding to do and how I am going to get through this time. I want to be productive and proactive so it keeps my mind at bay rather than letting it run wild.
1. Work on my website
I built my website back in 2014 as a senior in college. I didn’t have a working laptop at the time, so I would sit in the campus library slowly building my site before publishing it for the world to see. Ah, memories.
For the most part, I feel it has aged well. Going for clean and concise, I try to keep it up to date as best I can. With everything becoming even more digital, it is crucial to have all of you in one place. If you do not have a website, I invite you to start building one.
Would you like to have some look at your website and give suggestions on making it look its best? Contact me and I would be happy to help!
2. Create new demo reels
Demo reels are a great way to show companies what you have done as a performer and what you could bring to a future project. A reel is a compilation of what you deem to be your best work in small snippets, and should aim to be less than 3 minutes. Reels can be utilized in online submissions and on your website. Keeping reels up to date as best you can is important. I will be the first to admit that I have left mine go a little longer than I should have. I am working to create reels from current shows I do as well as piece together standard Musical Theatre and Dance reels.
3. Submit auditions online
Got those demo reels ready? Time to submit! If you scroll through the standards sites for locating auditions (hiya playbill.com), they are either postponed or cancelled. WOMP. The upside is a lot of these companies are now taking submissions online. Each audition may require something slightly different, but now is the time to start working on those on-camera skills!
Don’t let the inability to attend a physical audition keep you from working towards future employment.
4. Work on my Instagram branding
This one came out of left field when I was making this list. I would like to think that my Instagram is more of just a compilation of happenings in my life, but I know how vital social media and just a digital presence is these days. I am not looking to all of a sudden have thousands of followers, but I want it to be very clear “who Anna is”.
5. Learn how to post an IGTV video
I am FULLY ADMITTING that I don't know how to do this or do it well. I want to make sure I post it correctly the first time so I don’t have to go back try to fix an error. IGTV is a way to upload videos anywhere from 1 to 60 minutes of video content, which is amazing! To build off of my number 6, I would like to get my reels onto my IGTV so they are in another place that companies and casting can locate.
6. Set up my Voice Over studio
Voice Over work is something I have revered for a long time. I recently took a private lesson to get myself in a place where I can actively and successfully pursue this new realm of performing. I am just barely at the starting line, but I am excited to start creating a space of my own. This requires purchasing gear and equipment to make my space the most successful it can be, so this is the perfect time to start organizing.
7. Read more books
Reading more is a goal of mine for 2020, and so far this year I have quite a bit. Earlier in the year, a family friend did a large clean out of books, and my parents sent me photos to ask which books I was interested in reading. The phrase “don’t judge a book by its cover” was completely thrown out, and I chose the books I wanted to read based off titles and authors. I encourage you to read before bed instead of getting on your phone, or read a few chapters in lieu of an episode of a Netflix show. Mixing things up where you can will certainly come in handy.
8. Organize or create a filing system
Where do you currently hold all your important documents like passport, insurance, and personal information? If it is strewn throughout your house and you don’t have a system yet, now is a great time to pull all of it together and start to organize. You don’t have to have a full blown filing cabinet, but a mobile filing binder is more than enough. Think of it this way: you should be able to grab this ONE thing so if your place of living was on fire, you wouldn't have to run around looking for it all.
9. Marie Kondo my life…again
If you have not read about or seen her series on Netflix, Marie Kondo is the cutest woman who has created what's known as the Kon Mari method to help so many get their lives organized and minimize the "extra stuff" so many of us seem to have in our lives. I used portions of this method before I moved to Florida almost three years ago, and I am going to do it again with all the categories: clothes, books, papers, komono (miscellaneous items), and sentimental items. If this all seems to be too much, start in one area of your life where you KNOW you need to get it cleaned out. Take it day by day and you will be surprised how much you accomplish.
10. Social distance in real life and online
I would like to be part of the solution and not adding to the problem. Staying home and self-quarantining is a large component on keeping this thing from spreading, so I am on board and doing my best in that regard. I am also all for being informed, but constantly scrolling, tapping, and reading opinions on the current state of things can get to be a lot. Along with social distancing, I am going to partake in social media distancing as well. If you find yourself feeling the same way, I encourage you to limit your time on the platforms you use.
We are in some uncharted territory folks, and it can be scary. Create your own list of things to do to keep yourself productive if that is what helps you. Rest, eat your veggies, move your body, and stay safe.