Film, Hipstercrite Life

I Used to be a Hollywood Assistant

Over at CultureMap, I wrote a story about my days in LA. Some of you who have hung in there with me might already know this story. Occasionally I get nostalgic and cry like a little bitch about ol’ Hollywood. Either way, I’m happy I left it…

True Hollywood Story: The Life and Death of a Tinsletown Assistant

12.10.11 | 01:00 pm

I used to work in Hollywood — as a personal assistant.

Sometimes it seems like a dream, my time there. A forgotten dream only triggered by a minor chord or someone else’s love letter to Los Angeles. By songs or films that I relate to but that are not my story. Sometimes I drift off in a cloud of romanticized musings of things I did not experience.

It’s much easier to recall your time in Hollywood like one would a movie, giving your story a narrative when in reality, while you were experiencing it, there was no voice guiding the way.

I meet a lot of young people in Austin who want to move to or are about to move to LA. My initial reaction is to dispense unrequested warning, to give them a knowing nod that says, “Been there, done that, good luck, child.” As I stand there pinching that thought at the bottom of my esophagus, a second feeling floods in —a feeling triggered by the reminder that, at one point, I wanted to move to LA, and I did move to LA. I believe that every person who has an interest or desire to move to Los Angeles (or anywhere for that matter) should do it while they still can. It could end up being a good choice or a bad choice, but either way — it was the right choice at the time.

The truth is, whatever time you spend in LA is completely invaluable. No amount of how-to books or film school can teach you what LA teaches you. Whether or not you “make it” there, you will walk away with a surplus of knowledge. Because of this, I do not regret one second of my years in Los Angeles.

I moved to LA at 20 after being offered a job to work at a celebrity’s small production company…


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  • Reply jackie December 12, 2011 at 4:43 pm

    ugh, the whole feelings of loneliness, not knowing wtf I’m doing, and tying up loose ends is pretty much my life in ny. i now know my stay is indefinite, but it’s a perpetual emotion of “IDONTKNOWWHATIMDOING AND I HAVE NO FRIENDS!”
    I’m finally finding a routine and it’s nice, but it’s going to be a while till I feel comfortable.

  • Reply M December 14, 2011 at 6:05 pm

    Y’know, I thought about moving to L.A., then thought better of it and I’m glad I did. I think it would have been incredibly lonely and full of road-rage. 🙂

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