Your best is yet to come, by Kristine Oller


Your best is yet to come.

How you viscerally respond when you read that statement depends on the stories you’ve been telling yourself lately.

Have you been telling yourself that you’re too old?   That your window of opportunity is rapidly closing?  That you’ve already peaked?  That it’s too late?  That the odds are against you?  That you are trapped within your own life?  That you can’t learn any new tricks?

How you viscerally respond to that statement also depends on how you are currently defining that word – “best.”

What is the vision you have for what is possible for yourself?  Did that vision come from inside you, or has it been shaped by someone else’s orthodoxy, standards, traditions, or desires which you have accepted as your own?

If you are willing to change your stories and definitions, you can literally change your life. 

And that is true no matter how old you are.

But don’t take my word for it, meet a few of my idols – all of whom led early lives that provided little indication that they would make such significant shifts:


British author Penelope Fitzgerald published her first book at age 59.

At age 63 she won the prestigious Booker Prize for her third book, Offshore (which I loved – I just finished it for my book club this month).  “In 20 years she published nine novels, three biographies and many essays and reviews.  She changed publishers four times when she began publishing and she never had an agent. By the end of her life she had been shortlisted for [the Booker prize] several more times, won a number of other British prizes… and became famous at 80 with the publication of The Blue Flower”which won the U.S. National Book Critics Circle Award. “Yet she always had a quiet reputation. She was a novelist with a passionate following of careful readers, not a big name.” She died in 2000 at age 83.

Sourced and quoted from Hermione Lee’s 2013 preface to Offshore.


With no agent, no manager, no credits, no contacts, and no spouse, Kathryn Joosten packed up her truck and moved to Hollywood at the age of 56 (after dipping her toe into community theater at age 42). In 23 years, she amassed 118 film and television credits and won two Emmy Awards (for her role on Desperate Housewives). She received her third Emmy nomination posthumously after she died in 2012 at age 79.

Sourced from IMDB.

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Agents – Part 1: The low-down, by Rachel Fulginiti

Today kicks off the first in a new three part series, inspired by one of my readers (thank you Britt Dyer!). Over the next several weeks I’ll be talking about agents: what they do, how to get one and how to work with one once you’re in partnership. It’s a subject that can often feel mysterious or frustrating. Sometimes it’s a challenging part of getting “to the next level” in your career, but it doesn’t have to be confusing!

What exactly does an Agent do? Well, the short and sweet is: they negotiate contracts. Legend has it, there was once a day when they sought out budding young talent with potential and cultivated it…but that doesn’t happen much anymore. Basically, you and your agent are part of a team. You come to the table a completely formed product, and then your agent (hopefully) helps to sell it. Ideally, they find lots of opportunities for you, they talk you up, push for you and go to bat for you, and when you book jobs, they get you the very best deal they can, which will be mutually beneficial for both of you, as they earn 10% of what you make. With union jobs, that 10% is typically added to the top of your rate, so the agent’s cut doesn’t actually take away from what you’re making on the gig.

Wait, how are Agents different from Managers? Technically, to call themselves an agent (at least in the state of California), they have to have a license, adhere to certain guidelines and practices, and they can only take 10%. There are no requirements for someone calling themselves a “Manager”. Don’t get me wrong, there are definitely some great managers out there, and typically they get more involved in the day to day career of the talent (or at least, they used to), but beware, there are tons of unscrupulous ones out there, as well. Most managers take between 15- 20%. A lot of times they will add an additional percentage onto the client’s bill and still (also) take 15-20% out of your cut. That being said, if they are getting you work that you wouldn’t have had otherwise, then it’s probably still worth it.

So, do I need one?

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