If I had gotten on a Maude team the first year I applied in 2011, I wouldn’t have pitched an article to The GLOC about rejection.
If Glennis McCarthy hadn’t said yes to my pitch, I wouldn’t have asked Julie Klausner, Caitlin Bitzegaio, and Lennon Parham for interviews.
If they hadn’t said yes, I would never have gotten Julie Klausner’s advice: You might have to work harder to get what you want. But you’ll learn more from the process, and then you’ll be a creator. It takes balls to be the creator - to be the one who puts it all together and produces it. But when you do it, no one can ever take it away from you.
If I had gotten on a Maude team the second year I applied in 2012, I wouldn’t have asked Michael Hartney to coach me in sketch.
If Michael hadn’t said yes, I wouldn’t have formed Bridge & Tunnel.
If I hadn’t formed Bridge & Tunnel, I wouldn’t have been ready when Michael asked us if we wanted to put on a show.
If we hadn’t put on that first show show, we wouldn’t have kept performing, and gotten a monthly show that’s nearing 2 years at the PIT.
If we hadn’t performed together for 2 years, we wouldn’t be as good as we are—and getting better—and we would never have been selected for festivals where we won awards.
If Bridge & Tunnel hadn’t stayed together, we wouldn’t have submitted our first Spank in 2013.
If our spank hadn’t gotten a pass after our show not long after I’d been rejected from Maude a third time, I wouldn’t have been broken-hearted and asked B&T’s brilliant director Aaron Burdette, “Jesus. What do I have to do here?”
If I hadn’t been that low, I wouldn’t have told him about the very personal show I was thinking of writing, but wasn’t sure how to write.
If I hadn’t told him about it, he wouldn’t have said, “That’s exactly the kind of show you should be writing.”
If he hadn’t given me that push, I wouldn’t have started writing The Dead Dads Club last September.
If that show had been easier to write, it wouldn’t have taken me 6 months to write the first draft and a year for the final.
If the process had been shorter, it would have a completely different cast and director.
If Michael Hartney didn’t direct this show, it wouldn’t be as magical and meaningful and personal as it is now.
If all of these things didn’t happen when and how they happened, The Dead Dads Club might not have gotten a run at UCB Theater starting in October.
It takes balls to be a creator, and no one can take it away from you.
*Edited to add: I hope this doesn’t make me sound like a cocky jerk. I just wanted to write about how great it feels to have a win after a lot of rejection. And hopefully I’ll remember it the next time I get a big ‘no.’ The no’s are good. They make you better.
"And hopefully I’ll remember it the next time I get a big ‘no.’ The no’s are good. They make you better."