Wow, things can change quickly.
I've just accepted a new job in North Carolina, and I start the first of November (yes, less than two weeks from now).
Which means I'll shortly be making a break from my more than ten-year home of Austin, on to the next phase this adventure.
This is wicked exciting, and wicked hard for me. I've been blessed on so many fronts in the decade I've been in Central Texas -- with relationships, professional ties, and acting.
Now, I'm choosing to say goodbye to the day-to-day blessings of those things.
In my current acting training, there's a rule that says I don't make a change in what I'm doing in a scene unless and until I'm compelled by something more profound.
I was compelled by something more profound.
Besides being an actor, I'm a lifetime gamer. And I'm a wicked good business development guy.
I've been taking concerted steps for almost three years to position myself to move into the video game vertical market (it's unfortunately very closed). Almost out of the blue, an opportunity opened that lets me apply my technical background, my mad Biz Dev skillz, my enjoyment of PC and video (and table top, come to think of it) games, my people passion, and my creativity in one place. I'm pretty sure I've never had a such a mutually excited interview process; it just so felt like that "perfect storm" of opportunities for my skills and passions.
So I said, "Yes."
Not tepidly. Not half-heartedly. Full-on, let's-make-something-happen, "Yes!"
(Oh, I negotiated; would you want to hire a person who doesn't know how to negotiate?)
So, what's the new gig?
Can't say yet, but watch this space. Or maybe this space. But probably at least this space.
And while I said it's wicked exciting, I also said it's also wicked hard.
Yes, I'm finally in the video game industry in a big, makes-sense, impactful kind of way. But I'm also leaving Austin.
I have had some of the same friends for the entire ten years I've been here. I'm solidly networked in the business and technology markets here. I've been growing as an actor here for almost six years. Austin rocks in and of itself.
Which is part of why this job -- and this move -- appeals to me.
I'm one of those guys who genuinely likes change. I look for opportunities in change (for myself and other people). The problem with me liking change so much is I'm comfortable with it. But, for me, comfortable is bad. It fosters personal laziness and lack of risk-taking.
What better way to get uncomfortable than to move into a new vertical market, and a new part of the world where I don't have a support base?
That'd do it.
And there's more too it, but I don't think it makes sense to get into it too much here. Suffice it to say acting is hugely important to me, but knowing myself, I have to be careful not to make things like acting too important. It doesn't make sense for me to allow acting to become a god that takes away from more important relationships and responsibilities. I guess it's shorter to say that I'm an adult, and sometimes that sucks on the hard-decision front.
Am I ending relationships in Austin? Of course not -- just the day-to-day phase of those relatiobships. I suspect I'll be back to Austin regularly, but I'm going to be investing heavily in my North Carolina life. It's the InterWeb age, though, so there are six ways to Sunday to hit me up.
Am I giving up acting?
Don't be ridiculous!
My incredible agent will continue to represent me aggressively. I'll be adding East Coast representation, and working in a state that has a good interactive and film incentive program. I'm still available to those long-standing Texas clients who have been willing to fly me out for auditions and gigs. I'll be a short hop from New York. I already have to get on a plane for West Coast gigs, so no big whoop there. My voice travels everywhere.
And weird as it sounds, I'm excited about hopefully getting out - of - my - skin uncomfortable on the acting front. I have some ideas for some fun, gutsy stuff, and I'm hoping I can onboard some to-be-local-to-me NC actors.
Good times are coming.
Like I said, things are happening fast, but I hope to have three quick fairwell get-togethers (social, professional, and acting) in the next couple of weeks. Watch this space.
I'm grateful to the folks who have challenged me, supported me, trained me, and otherwise contributed to my success in my more than decade of there - is - not - enough - time - in - the - day frantic doings. I wish I could sit with every person and say why you rock. I realize that isn't likely to happen.
Let's face it, it's easy to keep in touch with me.
I've got this this Website, which is obviously my main avenue for communicating to the wonderful men, women, and others keeping tabs on my acting and ramblings.
In case you haven't been paying attention, I also use Twitter quite a bit to track folks and keep peeps informed of my day-to-shenanigans and ruminations (think of it as micro-blogging). It's not all deep stuff, but I do consciously use the service strategically to keep you abreast of my professional doings (and I try to avoid the insipid "I'm eating macaroni" type posts).
If you're into Windows Live Messenger (including Yahoo! Messenger, since they inter-operate), send me a request to stay in touch. If I feel close enough to you, I'll add you as a contact. ;-)
If you're a gamer with an Xbox 360, send me a friend request via Xbox Live (Hitachi Wasabe). You can school me online.
And if you're a professional acquaintance of mine, track my career path via LinkedIn.com.
Thank you, and here's to the adventure!