Everything Happens at Once

As I type this, a hurricane from the Pacific and a tropical storm from the Atlantic are wreaking havoc in Costa Rica, where my parents live. The government has declared a state of national emergency. My folks are fortunate: they live on high ground, 5,000 feet above sea level, so they only lost power and internet. Their water might get cut off but they’re ready. Meanwhile, thousands of Costa Ricans have lost their homes to unprecedented flooding from rivers that have risen and raged in a shockingly short amount of time.

There have been deaths.

This is only one of several natural disasters that have befallen the globe recently, on top of national tragedies in the USA and other parts of the world.

One could become numb to it all.

Nevertheless: I assume you know where to donate or volunteer, but if not, the Red Cross and UNICEF are usually good choices.

And now I’m going to talk about my first solo show. This feels grossly uncomfortable since we all know that humans have been through hell this year and a show is just a show.

But solo shows and creativity in general are what this blog is about. So here’s how I justify talking about my show in this month of October 2017:

Alien Citizen: an earth odyssey is the only touring solo show that highlights issues of culture, language, gender, race, religion, and nomadic upbringing in a single performance. It’s funny and poignant and takes the audience through six countries on two continents. The show depicts people in Latin America, North Africa, and the Middle East in prismatic, relatable ways that we rarely see on the American stage. It serves as a bridge between cultures. It also shows what being a girl is like on this planet.

I think the show has worth even (or especially?) in the current state of our terrible, frightening, wondrous, fragile world. I’ve been told it does.

So I’m excited to be performing Alien Citizen: an earth odyssey in the first annual Solo Queens Festival at the Bootleg Theater in Los Angeles, California, USA. Bootleg has a fierce belief in the power of women in Art to create change in the world and this festival will celebrate women and their life experiences.

That’s the plug. But it’s not the only reason that I’m writing this. The main reason is in the title of this post: everything happens at once.

Remember how I was creating the movie of my show? Well, it’s this close to ready. I’m about to drop the data off at the DVD printers to get copies replicated for customers. Copies have already been sold but the thing can’t be shipped until it’s printed!

I had hoped to have the DVD ready by June 2016, but I quickly learned that that was crazy talk. I was the first editor to work on it…while touring the show and leading workshops and pursuing my acting career and learning all I could about growing a small business. So of course the editing took an especially long time. And I’m not a pro editor.

Fortunately, I was able to hire a real editor and he made magic of the final cut, thank goodness.

However, now the movie will be launched right before my show opens…and I can’t worry about the timing anymore. Whether it’s good or bad, the point is: I now have two big products, with one deadline looming and the other already missed.

If you’re wondering why I don’t just wait to deal with the movie until after the show opens:  I’ve been promoting the DVD for months because I predicted that it would be out by September. I put that date on my website. People have bought copies that I need to print and ship. 

Meanwhile, I booked my first TV gig in years back in September, and my first role in a big movie with movie stars shoots next week.

I’m leading workshops because I love to do that work but I also need the income.

All of this is great! I am profoundly lucky to have each one of these opportunities, and to have them all at once is an embarrassment of riches.

And I need an assistant.

Don’t we all.

Three different small-business experts have told me flat out to hire an assistant. I’d love to, but the expense is a large obstacle at the moment and training someone will take time…and I kinda don’t have any left. Not for the “live” show, at least.

So I don’t have an assistant who can contact tons of people and organizations via email and social media, and follow up with them, and help me to fill the house for each performance. I’ve been doing a lot of this myself and will continue to do it, of course, but I will not be able to do everything that could really help to put butts in seats, as they say.

Thus I am reduced to begging on my blog.

Please come to my show if you’re in L.A County or SoCal. My director, Sofie Calderon, did a truly great job with it. Her impeccable guidance has helped me to tell the story so that it has resonated for thousands of audience members around the world. Come see why it made them think and laugh and cry.

If you’re not in L.A., please send your L.A. peeps to it.

I’ll be playing in rep with Kristina Wong’s The Wong Street Journal and Valerie Hager’s Naked in Alaska, October 26 – November 19. Their shows are kickass pieces of theatre.

There will be FREE CHILDCARE during Sunday matinees!

There will also be signature cocktails for every show in the fest! Mine is called An Earth Odyssey. We’re still deciding whether it’ll be a riff on a cosmo, a Singapore Sling, or something else.

Groups of eight get 20% off. If you’d like to get in on that, let me know and I’ll put you in touch with Bootleg’s queen bee Jessica Hanna.

If you’d like to sponsor a low-income person who couldn’t otherwise afford a ticket, give me a holler.

If none of the above applies, and you’d like to see the movie instead, please click here.

So…I’m obviously not giving tips or help in this post. I’m not “adding value” as they say…although I think the show and movie do do that, but this post isn’t doing it in any immediate way that I can see.

I hope you’ll forgive me for that and come see my show or send someone to it. It would mean the world to me.

Thank you from the bottom of my heart.

And be safe out there.


BONUS: I’ve been practicing some good habits like meditation, gratitude lists, and exercising regularly most of this year. But I can’t seem to kick overworking—been putting in 12-14 hours/day for months. So I’m sharing this link about how to successfully form a new habit, to remind myself and hopefully help my readers (added value! yay!):

The 3 R’s of Habit Change: How To Start New Habits That Actually Stick by James Clear

Thank you for reading my twenty-sixth post! I love your comments! Please feel free to leave one below.