I've started scrapbooking.
Nope- I'm lying. I have made, A scrapbook. And by no means is it the conventional scrapbook with construction paper, and pictures of me on the beach surrounded by palmtree stickers and sparkly embossed margarita pitchers.
This scrapbook is approproately titled- REJECTION.
I know that sounds like a cute lie, or something a wildly neurotic Parker Posey character would do, but I'm dead serious.
One evening, when I was feeling particularly frenzied, the idea hit me- almost as hard as every single - "NO" I've received within the last eight years.
I was remebering all of the things I've prepared for, all of the auditions, interviews, letters sent, waiting rooms that have felt the palpitation of my heart... I could feel the nerves I felt, and the fabric of the outfit I picked so maticulously, because it had to be "perfect." I had to be prepared.
The dollar amounts of lessons, glossy photographs, and "the right shoes" started rolling in my head hitting a disgusting high of triple digits.
"So what have you been doiiiing, "out there?".... I get this ALL THE TIME. From everyone that I see, when I return from whatever city I've attempted dominating.
So, instead of explaining to people why I'm still in the process....I decided to make my process tangible. Tangible for people to flip through, for their oo's and ah's, for proof, but MOSTLY, for me. I may not be where I want to be, BUT I am DAMN proud of what I've done in order to help me "get there" and where's the fun if you cannot enjoy the progression of your own evolution?
Truthfully- I'm proud, because with EVERY. SINGLE. ONE. OF MY REJECTIONS- I've been "this close"
My scrapbook looks like this;
I have been rejected by 14 different Broadway plays- some, I've auditioned for more than once.
Rent said, "Wait, Mimi isn't white." after they called me to audition for Mimi- and I am white.
I have been rejected by 6 different back-up singing jobs- Ashlee Simpson's people said, "You sing it better than she does." but opted to choose a blonde girl. At the time we, "looked too much alike." Macy Gray- didn't want a white girl and my audition for Will.I.Am from Blackeyed Peas- is an entirely seperate blog that makes me cringe just thinking about it. Lets just say, I tripped. Hard. Like, on my face.
I have been rejected by 15+ reality shows/tv shows-
*I've had four seperate VJ auditions
* four phases of Real World auditions (after the VJ thing, they recognized I'm enough of a "crazy" to be on The Real World)
*2 auditions for Making The Band- both of which I was called to attend from references. -both of which I'm GLAD I didn't make.
*2 auditions for American Idol- and just so you KNOW, there are 3 auditions BEFORE you see the judges- both times, Simon said, "You are good. very good. Just....what's unique about you...."
That's not damaging to the spirit. They told me to, "Work on my story."
* Remember the "Pussycat Doll" show- well, yeah, I auditioned for that- cause who doesn't want to be in that "Buttons" video, all trampy and dancing in flames.
I knew the director and a doll, she knew I was coming, so I said,"Hey, fuck it." I got so far in the audition process, they made me quit my job, pack enough clothing for 3 months, then after no sleep, no food and being treated like a prisoner, I was cut at 3am and asked to find a ride from a vacant parking lot near the airport.
3 months later, the executives called and begged me to do "Season 2"....I thankfully declined.
There never was a "season 2."
*Remember the show "The One" on ABC.....no? Oh yeah, cause it was cancelled after a week. There were 10 people chosen, I was number 12.
I'll leave it to your imagination to fill in the rest of the rejections.
I have rejection letters from over 200+ agencies, jobs, and so on.
Lets just say, the book is a thick one.
My best friend told me to burn it and start fresh.
I could never.
This book is me, these things have made me so much stronger- so much more secure and proud of my talent and who I am. I want to strap the book to my back, I want to stand on it and use it as my platform of strength, I want to frame it in a shadow box, I want to write a letter of gratitude to everyone who's denied me. I am not embarrassed, I am honored. Proud that I have not given up, nor do I intend to. Proud that I've kept trying, proud for coming close, proud for being WILLING to share and use the gifts that I've been put on this planet to utilize.
I do not believe in rejection, only growth.
"You do your best work after your biggest disasters" Jerome Robbins.
And, I, believe that is true.