Strike Outs + Batting Average

Strike Outs + Batting Average
Claire DeBerg model and actress

I’m a model and actress. It is a job. I go to lots of casting calls and auditions. Lots. So many. Several each week.

What this looks like is this: I memorize lines, I dress in the manner the director requests, I prepare my hair and makeup to match their requests for on-camera auditions, I figure out childcare, I rearrange meetings, I plot trips and track mileage and keep parking receipts and log hours. This acting and modeling thing is a business, yo!

And it is fun and I love it and it is work.

In the last week my agent has sent me to two big casting calls. And when I say big they’re high-profile clients (like Coca-cola) so the rate for a day’s work is high ($1,000+/day) and the work is challenging (lots of lines to memorize and nail). These are serious auditions and I prepare for them for hours sometimes.

For both castings I received a callback. Callbacks are huge! It signals you’ve done something well…you’re noted for your talent and the director wants to see you back to audition again. Callbacks mean you’re closer to landing the job, the gig, the part.

I was beyond thrilled to head back to the casting agent and audition again for both of these parts–often with the same exact hair and clothes worn at the first audition (directors like consistency when talent audition). I was totally prepared and feeling confident and imagining how each audition would go and even plotting wardrobe fitting dates and shoot dates on my calendar.

For one it was down to me and another talent. She got it.


For the other casting call I didn’t get the part and someone else did.


And I was TOTALLY bummed. And I was TOTALLY annoyed that I was totally bummed. I’ve been to hundreds of casting calls over the last 8 years. Obviously I didn’t get every job in the past. Sometimes when I walk into a casting agency and look at the models waiting to audition they all look like me so I have to figure out how I’ll set myself apart because it won’t be for my height, eye color, hair color or ethnic ambiguity. But this last week I got really down about myself and my ability and wondered if I was enough of this (bubbly? serious?) or enough of that (facial expressions? humor?).

I sulked. It was kind of juvenile, really. Finally I admitted to my husband that I was actually sad to not get these parts and that is why I was moping around in my bathrobe until 11:00 on a Saturday. Then he said something that I want you to hear, too:

“Babe, if your batting average is .300 that means you’re near the top of the league…it means you’re a really good ball player. It also means you strike out 7 times out of 10. Out of 10 times you’re up at bat you are slated to strike out 7 of those at-bats. You will strike out TWICE as many times as you hit. But you WILL hit, if you play the game.”

So I will keep playing this modeling and acting game. And this mom game and this wife game and this writing game and this life game and this healthy food game and this prayer game. Keep at it, lovelies. Whatever game you’re committed to playing…whatever game in this life that has you questioning whether you’re enough: get back at the plate. You will strike out a lot…more than you connect with the ball. But you will hit if you play the game.