January 1, 2010
So long, Amiricans!
Iíve been thinking a lot about the web and its role in my life. And Iíve come to realize that in part, I use the web as a way to ďfeelĒ busy, without actually creating any work. In previous years, I would constantly update my website and my MySpace, and send out emails to my mailing list, making sure that everyone I knew was in the know about what I was up to. More recently, Iíve moved all that ďactivityĒ to Facebook and Twitter. And thanks to MySpace, FaceBook, and Twitter, not only did I make sure people knew about my professional activity, but I also started to keep people informed about my personal life, including randomly interesting or funny things I found while absent-mindedly surfing the web.
I think there are a lot of reasons for this. Part of it was that I was one of the first actors I knew with a really great website (thanks Rahul and Jeff), so I got a lot of kudos and attention from my friends, family, and colleagues for it. Another is that the more active you are on social networking sites, the more that activity is encouraged by others on the network, explicitly and implicitly. Another is that with each success Iíve had in my career, Iíve had a burst of web attention, be it from friends, family, or strangers, and that attention feels good. Another is that constantly clicking the mouse can be addictive, just like those lab rats who kept pushing the lever that stimulated the pleasure center in their brains. Another is that living the life of a working actor in LA can sometimes be isolating, and a lot of the connections you make on the web can seem stronger than they are, or at the very least, can feel better than having nothing at all that day.
But the more I think about it, the more I realize that very little of this web activity is getting me anywhere. All itís doing personally is keeping me from actually connecting with people in real life. And professionally, while itís satisfying to be creative in short bursts when I compose a funny Tweet or blog entry, all that itís accomplishing in the long run is keeping me from having sustained bursts of creativity, ie writing the various screenplay or pilot ideas Iíve had in my head for years.
So, Iíve decided to take a step back from the web. Iím not going into total isolation, but I am making some changes. Iíve deleted anyone from my personal FaceBook that I havenít really hung out with or worked closely with, and Iím essentially freezing my website. Iím not deleting anything, in case anyone wants to read old journal entries for any reason, but I will no longer be updating the site. I also will be deleting my mailing list. What I have realized is that making sure people see me on TV and stuff is fun and gratifying, but it doesnít actually propel my career any further unless the people who see me are casting directors or producers. That said, I do know there are some friends, family, and even a few fans who genuinely want to know about my activity, and I certainly donít want anyone nice enough to care about me to be out of the loop. So, if you are one of those people, Iíd like to invite you to my FaceBook fan page or my Twitter feed (you can find them very easily through a search). I will continue to send infrequent updates through those media, because, thankfully, they force me to keep them short and to the point.
Thank you all, you Amiricans, I hope I can continue to entertain you and make you proud. I sincerely appreciate all the support youíve shown me through the years via this website. Please know that even if this website is no longer meaningful to you your support in spirit will continue to mean very much to me.
Note: There will be one exception to the lack of updates on my website. I pretty regularly get emails from other actors asking for advice. Iíve added one more journal entry, and I'm gonna keep a running Q&A on it, so that each time a question is asked, I will keep expanding that journal entry, hopefully making it more comprehensive and helpful to people, and at the same time make it easy to answer all the advice emails I get.