Friday, August 8, 2014

Starting Over

I've got enough good news now that I thought an update would be appropriate.

As I have related to many, I spent 2009-2013 "mid-life-ing", which - considering that I am 53 years old - might be seen as optimistic. The latter part of 2013 marked a wild departure (literally) as I moved myself and everything I owned cross-country, overnight, 11 hours straight from Michigan to Louisiana in my modified Chevy Express cargo van.
Love is a powerful motivator.

I then investigated my Screen Actors' Guild situation. Protracted unemployment in Los Angeles whilst in a bad marriage, combined with misinformation about the ease of union reinstatement when offered the lead in a non-union film had motivated me to leave SAG. Well, not "leave", but rather I went "Financial Core" or "Fi-Core" status, which allowed me to star in "The Dead Matter" at the time. However, I would need to rejoin SAG, currently SAG-AFTRA, if I was going to reboot my career. You know, for Love. So, I called SAG-AFTRA and, firstly, paid my dues up to current. I then began the process to appeal for re-admittance as a full member.

One other, much larger concern was also on my mind - my "green card". My permanent resident card was set to expire in May 2014, which is kind of a big deal. No amount of SAG-AFTRA membership would matter if I could not legally live and work in the USA. So, I applied in January to renew that as well, which involved having my "criminal history" (damn that Los Angeles speeding ticket!) evaluated by the FBI and being fingerprinted. I also hastily ensured that my taxes from the last few years were in order as well.

Seven nail-biting months later, I finally received some good news: SAG-AFTRA would allow me back in as a full member. For two weeks thereafter, I enjoyed the bittersweet notion that I had cleared that hurdle only to possibly fall at the immigration fence. There really was no good reason why my green card renewal would be denied, but I think everyone knows the crippling power of UNCERTAINTY, especially concerning something so impactful upon one's life.
And one's Love.

Thankfully, I did at last receive that wonderful news in a letter from the government, with my freshly minted permanent resident card arriving in the mail the following day. Now, I had everything I needed to engage in this acting-career-thing again. Well, everything except a professional agent to represent me.

Therefore the culmination of all of this good news is that I now have an agent! There is a lot of television and film in "Hollywood South", so I hope to be in front of a camera again soon.
For Love.