Lauren LoGiudice creates comedy through deeply flawed and painfully idiosyncratic characters. She has embodied some of the world’s most mysterious cultural icons and her work has been featured by The New York Times, the BBC and many others. In this episode we chat about how to make it as a comedian, how to market yourself online and how she wrote her new book: Inside Melania: What I Learned About Melania Trump by Impersonating Her.
Probably my favorite review is by Ritch Shydner: “…Lauren masterfully used Satire, parody and irony to process the Slovenian Ice Queen”
Listeners of this podcast can get the first 3 chapters of her audiobook free by visiting www.laurenlogi.com/empire
Listen on: Apple Podcasts | Spotify | YouTube | Pandora
All right. I got Lauren here on the establishing your empire podcast. Why don’t you give us a little background information of who you are and what you do. Great. Yes. So I create comedy through characters and I tried to help us all laugh about what’s hard in the world. So, I’ve taken people that are, lot of them are misunderstood and, and try to help create some understanding between myself, them, and hopefully the audience.
That’s super fun. So why, why characters instead of just, you know, stand up comedy or, you know, it’s, it’s like something that just, you realize something you’re really good at. That’s one of the, that’s why I started to focus on it as a business strategy. is this, you realize like finally, like, like I was talking to a Booker and he said, you know, I need to find a show where I can put you on and you can come into your characters.
And I was like, no, no, I can do my standup, my regular standup. He’s like, yeah, but. Yeah, no one else does that though. No one else has your characters. You’re the only one. And I’m like, ah, yeah, it’s awesome. And was that something that you did like as a kid, a bunch, like, did you always end up in person eight people and make jokes?
Well, you know, when I was a kid, I was, I was a little bit shy and very sensitive, but I was an outsider and I don’t look like anyone in my neighborhood. So I’m tall and fair. And everyone in my neighborhood were short, little Italian people. I grew up in Howard beach in Queens, which is like the set of the Sopranos.
And, and so, and even in my family, so I don’t look like anyone and I, Oh, I’m really tall and skinny. And I was able to perspective and I would watch about, I never felt like I was part of them. And so, so I would watch how people would treat each other and had that outsider view. And. When I started creating one of the first things that I thought about was doing a character and I was attracted to any sort of art form that required a character development.
And I started to use the experiences of watching, how people treated each other growing up. And some of my first characters were all basically based on my family from that. I love that. So how, how did you go from all right. You know, Going through high school doing all that and then actually getting into comedy, like, was it something where it was really easy and got paid for your first gig?
Or like quickly, or like how did you actually make it into even thinking about it being a career? Well, I didn’t grow up in a family that. Thought that anything, but getting a job with a pension benefits, you know, work. So I actually, I went to Wesleyan university, one of the most progressive schools in the country and I was in my mind, it was like, they didn’t really ever tell me, like, you’re not allowed to.
I just knew that they would never approve of me doing anything but science, because why would I do anything that didn’t have a practical application? Like what do you do? You major in English? And then you just become a teacher. Like, what are you? Good job. Do you get. So I didn’t understand that that’s not how it works, how to think, and then you can do anything didn’t that was not sold in my family.
They were like, but what job? Like, what jobs do you get from that? So then I, so I majored in science and what ended up happening, I became the teacher. So I was a teacher for three years and like, I never thought, just never thought it was possible. And I had to work through like a lot of. Emotional things before I could get on the stage again, when I was a kid, I was, I was dancing and performing and.
you know, locally and it was always something I like I love to do, but I never thought, like I could do anything. And then just, you know, growing up, being so different, coming out in college, I had so and so, so much family drama. I wasn’t ready to beyond the stage again. So it wasn’t until. I became a teacher.
I moved away. and then I was there for three years in California and I started to perform on like performance art type stages, drag sages, and other places. And I was creating these characters and I’ve really loved it, but I loved it in a way that not everyone around me did like to them. It was a hobby.
And to me it was a calling. And that’s when I knew like, all right, like I have to do something with this, but I didn’t know what it would mean and no idea. And like Steve Martin said something to the effect of when. I decided to become, get into show business. It was because I know nothing about show business and that’s why I said yes, so that get into it head first.
And then I like, wasn’t sure what I was going to do. And then I got a fellowship to go to India for a year. And while I was there, I was basically like, if I don’t do. What I love to do, then I’m wasting my life. I have this opportunity. I’m the lucky to be able to have it, the education and the background to be able to do a little bit of what I wanted.
Cause once I was a teacher, I knew I could tutor. I had like an income stream kind of that I can back myself up with. So, and I’m so glad I was miserable, like miserable majoring in science. But yet now I’m not afraid of a spreadsheet and I can always pseudo chemistry. So that was like, when I came back to New York, that was something I knew that I could do.
So now I’m in New York and I knew no one, like no one in show business, I’m from Queens. How would beat, you know, I’m like, so Sonia so far from the city. So it’s like, it’s like a million miles away. Like people like go to Broadway once a year. So. There was no sort of like a path for me at all. No welcome mat.
And so what I did is I knew one person and then I talked to that person and I said like, this is what I want to do. I want to get be a performer professionally. I don’t know what it would mean. And then that person introduced me to someone else. And then that person introduced me to something else, someone else.
And that’s really how it goes. I like, I have friends from back in the neighborhood. They’re like, we have no idea how, you know, all these people. And it’s like, well, I didn’t either. I just started. That’s and you just show up to things. You go to events, you, you, I hate the word network, but as you get to know people and you build relationships and you foster those relationships and you keep track of those relationships very important.
And you just like, kind of grow them over the years. Cause the mom main thing is, is especially in show business, is that people everyone’s a flake. There’s so many, there’s so many people that I want to like try to do acting. And where I want to be. I want to write a screenplay. I want to do comedy. Yeah.
What have you done? You know, and they, they get discouraged after, you know, two, two months or two years, and then they leave, like, there’s that scene in the Sopranos where. What’s is it Christopher? Christopher is like, he buys like a laptop and screenplay software and he’s like, I don’t know. I just can’t write it.
Just, I bought it and it’s like, yeah, well, this comes through the really intense inner work to do. what you’re supposed to do, and this is like, I mean, for any real, any sort of career, any sort of, if you’re an entrepreneur, whatever you’re doing, like, okay, you want to do it, but now comes, the grinding now comes, the rejection now comes the like, feeling like you fail every single day, her hearing, you suck every single day.
Like it’s not easy. And that’s what separates the people who can do something different with the people who, who can. Yeah. And let’s talk about the garage. Yeah. Let’s talk about the grind, but because, so I own a photo video company too, so I know what you’re talking about. A lot of models that want to be a model or photographers.
I want to be photographers, but they just get that they spend all this money on the camera and then they just think that’s enough. Like I got a $6,000 camera, you know, and I had had this little art piece that I made and it’s like, what else have you done? So let’s go back. So one of in New York, like how was your first, you know, your first, I dunno, standup comedy or production piece, like talk to us about that kind of journey from then to now a little bit more in like how you decided to go into the direction you’re going in or however you want to take it.
I just kind of want to talk about the grind a little bit. Yeah, well, yeah, the main thing is like getting like so many performers, It spoke to so many people, just by asking like, Hey, can I have a few minutes of your time to talk about your journey? Taylor Mac was someone I spoke on the phone with just happened to know someone who knew him.
He’s a, is an incredible theater artist in New York. And it was like, how did you get started there? Like I just jumped on every single stage that I could. That’s always, and that’s what I did. And I. Jump I’ve jumped on a lot of stages all over the place. I’m in whatever I was doing. Just trying to put my work out there and to get better at it.
So, I mean, I’ve done, like I did a play in this experimental theater. And hell’s kitchen. That was good, but it got me in New York times up. So like, things like that, you know, you never know, you never like this theater. Oh my God. I would have never thought this crazy show. There’s like John Janae play. And then there’s, I didn’t never thought that did, would do anything for me and it, and it led to something that did, so that.
You know, you just never know what’s going to happen. Yeah. Getting those reps and I think is really big and no. Any, any industry like getting just reps and reps? Yeah, absolutely. And when I was, working on stand up, so I kind of was. You know, figuring out I was doing cool plays and the director was like, it seems like you just want to talk to the audience.
And I was like, yeah, I think I do. And then someone brought me to a standup show and I was like, or stand up open mic. And I was like, Oh, this is it. Oh my God. I found it. This is the thing. And like so many people in comedy, it just like, you know, you want to make your voice heard. But to me stand up was never an option because.
In comedy in general, because I would go to like a standup show and it would be a straight white guy standing on stage, making fun of everyone who he felt was beneath him. And so like every, you know, it was just making same massage, gymnastic, racist, sexist, Joe homophobic jokes. And I’m like, I don’t, I never felt like I could, I want to do it.
It never made me feel great to go to a comedy show. And then I realized that there’s all these other comedians. Who are outside the mainstream and do well and create comedy that unites rather than divides and makes people feel great in, in the best way. So it took me a while to get there because a lot of comedians don’t realize that we it’s an option that we, that we can do it.
So when I finally got there, I use the same strategy, which is just like jump on any stage. So I was actually performing like. Cranberry New Jersey
and like, hated like so hated by so many people and like these middle of nowhere places. But I was advised by some senior comedians get away from the fray. Don’t. Don’t do stuff like in New York, because then people have already seen you. And you know what, when I was, focusing a little more on acting when I’m just starting out, I wish I would have done that.
I wish I would’ve because then people feel like they know already know you. I wish I would’ve gotten my sea legs somewhere else, to be honest, and then come back and kind of knew exactly what I was doing and what I stood for and what I wanted because it’s first impressions are a lot. And so I wish I would have kind of.
You know, there is that like one person who doesn’t know what they’re doing and somehow falls into a career. And I think that is just few and far between, and I think I like worked my way up and was able to, and like, so act and like got myself to understand the industry, but I’ve just feel like it’s quicker if you just you’re ready to go.
And that’s, what I was doing with comedy, I was hiding from the city and just as I was about to like, start to do more stuff within New York. that’s when I fell into doing standup as Melania Trump, and that was like a joke I did at a comedy club in the parks casino. And it was a joke about Melania Trump looking miserable.
Like she’s a, that reminds me of Malani. I saw a picture and I was like, Oh my God, it reminds me of Melania Trump. I ma I remind myself, Oh, I saw a picture of myself and it reminds me of Melania Trump. Cause she’s miserable, but trying, And that was, and I came off the stage and the Booker was like, you gotta do an impression.
And, I was like, Oh man, I don’t, I do, I do like original characters. I don’t do, I don’t do impressions. And then I did it a few videos and I was like, all right, that’s it. But it did well. And then someone asked me to do a Halloween show and that, and I did stand up as her and it went really well. And then I created an Instagram channel and that started to it’s just like things kept happening as well.
And then I wrote a book, and that kind of led me to where I am. So I guess to summarize, it’s been like, just. Putting one foot in front of the other and having like a greater goal of like what I want to do in the world. And just trusting that I’ll somehow get there, you know, just by, I would have never predicted this millennia thing ever, ever.
Yeah. So how, how did, so that’s great that, that somebody else kinda gave you that first push to create that character, but how do you actually get into character right. Mentally? Like how do you, how does that work? Yes. Well, It’s in my process. It’s hard to know, you know, like, like, like Meryl Streep says, like, you don’t want to tell all the secrets you’ll ruin the fun and the magic, maybe.
So, I use a few different techniques that I’ve learned over the years. one thing I’ve had to fight against is that I’m like a very physical actor and. Like, you know, someone who likes to kind of put on, on the costume first, if, I guess if I had to describe it. And there’s a lot of pooh-poohing of that in the, In the, in the acting world.
So I had to like kind of overcome teachers who would make me feel bad for that. Then that’s something like, I think when you go into anything, you have people who like shit on what your natural instincts are. I was like, I was talking to someone the other day, like when you get into acting training, you know, you have certain instincts.
And I wonder if this is the same for peoples feel this way for business school, but you have instincts and this made you made, you want to go into, to what you were doing. And then they go there and they try to. Sell you a formula that they say is the way to do it. And then you have to get through that, have them almost demolish your spirit.
But remember it, remember what the original spirit was and fight through that spirit. And then come out on the other side where you have that initial spark, but yet you have more technique and knowledge behind you. And, and I think that’s beautifully put the big thing is, is if you do exactly what all the teachers tell you to do, you’re just going to be normal.
But you still need the technique you need the reps. So there’s still value there, but I do believe that you have to go off on your own path. Otherwise again, you’re just going to be the same person, same, same actor, same comedian photographer business person now on down the road. absolutely. So let’s talk about the millennia character a little bit.
so tell me, maybe let’s go actually, the marketing side of it first, social media, offline, online, what’s kind of your approach to marketing with before, even before the book and all that. Like how did, how did you kind of come up with getting this out there? Yeah, so, so much, I mean, one thing is, to be consistent in.
Creating online content. So how do you do that when you’re trying to perform and write for the stage and stand up stage and do a million other things. And the secret is batch filming. I will not shoot less than 10 videos in a day. And. Now we’re doing tech talk, forget it. We’re just doing it. You could do a zillion videos in a day and it, cause you find the theme that you’re working on and you just, you literally like create for that theme and you make repeatable videos you can do over and over and you’d be surprised how many work like I’m releasing videos.
I shot two years ago. In the produce production just took that long, but I kept it on theme. Like people don’t change. Let me tell you like some of these days for millennia, like just as relevant justice applicable. So batch creating video. It’s been super essential. So that was one thing so that I could be consistent.
You really need to be consistent on social media. That’s that’s a big deal. I also look to Acadian. That’s been very, very helpful as of late Acadian is a great place to match you up with an apprentice. and it’s been, since I was a teacher, I have skills and mentoring. And so I get these really, really great people who help me just with.
Like scheduling YouTube videos, looking up keywords, doing the thumbnails. Cause it is too much. It is too much. There is too much and there’s ways to get help. And I think at a certain point you have to be like, I’m either going to not sleep or I’m going to get help. So that’s, that’s another way. Cause then as you start to create all this stuff and now you need to distribute all this stuff and also I’m creating other stuff as well.
So that’s been kind of the mechanisms as which I’ve kind of kept this. This basically like assembly line for online video going then. Oh, it’s so interesting. Sorry to cut you off there, but this is what’s great about podcasts is I get to talk to people with all different walks of life and they it’s all the same story.
You know, create a ton of content batch process. It gets some freelancers or some employees to help you and be consistent and continue keep going, because it’s not going to, it’s not going to all happen in one day in one week. It’s going to be over a period of time. And if you keep creating that content.
Yeah. I feel like I’ve weighed people down, down with the enormity of my message until they fucking listened to me. That’s how I’ve done it. I’ve not no cause no one guess no one wants to listen to you and no one cares about you. And you have to force it. And there are so many, I mean, people out there with so many advantages of who they know who their father knows they happen to get on a television show and they have an advantage and don’t fucking hesitate for a goddamn second.
Okay. But any, any little trick you can do to get ahead because, because everyone else’s. And so you gotta go to, you have to do whatever you have to do to get it out there. And like, you know, also the like there’s of course, I’m sure you’ve all heard this, that Gary then our truck, like, you know, 63 con pieces of content in a day or whatever it is, 36 to whatever it is a lot of content in a day.
And I think like looking at like, Repurposing content. That’s a big deal, you know, like, cause the other thing is no one sees anything. No one reads, no one hears understands cares. So like, so what I say about that is like I put out a one minute video. Well, I could take a clip of that a ten second clip and put it up six months or a year from now.
Because no one remembers no, one’s going to remember that woman in video. And if they do, Oh my God, what a fan? Tell them something, please. Like, no, one’s going to remember. And then you can also say, if you have a longer video, you can turn that into a medium article. just started thinking of like all the different ways you can like bring messages from one form to the other, because no one.
Is no one will remember and people need to hear it multiple times in order for them to get it. and like, you know, if you want, like, if I write a really great joke, that’s 30 seconds in. I know most people aren’t going to see that. And it’s like giving, like respecting your work. Like you wrote a good joke.
I like wrote the joke, rehearsed a joke, film, the joke, like edited the joke, like did some post-production on the joke, like. I got to give the joke life. Like you have to respect your work and that’s it, you know, even like with podcasting, that’s something like in the last year I’ve been working on my podcast and I’ve realized like, I’m not even maximizing that.
Like there’s so much, like I should be sending clips to people who’ve been on the podcast. Like I should be finding more ways to put clips that I’ve of stuff that I’ve done on my podcast. I mean, There’s so much, and I should be like, writing more about the experience of having the podcast and what I’m learning and like just kind of extrapolating, like what I, what I have.
So I’m actually taking a few months break so that I can just start to catch up with that and maybe even publish less often. So I can do more with what I have, because sometimes it’s not about like, doing more, it’s just doing less, but more with what you have. And I agree with that. And I love a lot of that.
What you said there, what about the problem with perfection? How do you actually push your stuff out there? Have you had any problems with that of actually releasing this stuff on social media and how do you deal with that? If you do have any problems? One thing is, for instance, some of my videos are like beautifully produced and.
They take so much time in post production. And then I see people with videos that take a 10th of the, of the, time and get a lot more views. So my philosophy I’d be like, okay, I hear mad. Or I could just take it as a learning lesson and say like, And it all comes in the conception of what, of what your, of what your plan is.
And so if that is wrong, if my, my PR like conception is to create these perfect videos that are going to have all these extra steps, I’ve just made, created problems for myself. So I got to keep it small. And which you can’t. Screw up. Okay. So this is like, for instance, I’m working on a new video, this, these batch of videos.
I’m going to do 10 videos at least in this day. And I have the setting and I have, I just have to set up the lights once and I can bang out a bunch of one it’s with, I’m doing an Ivanka oppression now. So it’s gonna like be Ivanka Ivanka giving her favorite quotes. And so, But the thing is it needs no background popped in on green screen.
It’s only 20 seconds and I will only do it in one take. Meaning, I will only do like with the take that’s best. I won’t have to cut it in between. And so that will take maybe like 20 minutes to edit. Like, so I’m, I see what I mean, I’ve like made it easier for me. Cause then if you need more steps, this is where perfectionism comes in.
It needs to be PR it needs to be this elaborate production with all of these things. And then it’s going to, you’re creating the problems. And then it’s going to get screwed up because your concept was too complex. Like this is a unique quality and quantity. Yes. But you have to think about how to create quality.
That’s easy because that’s where you’re going to get screwed up. And like, then you like, especially like when you make it more complicated, more things can get screwed up. And that’s where it comes in. Now, a lot of times when you think, and like some people I’ve worked with. Who I love dearly and do incredible work for me, but then it’s like more complicated for them and I can’t get it out of their hands.
Cause they’re like trying to adjust this and that. And so, I think part of the problem with perfection is you set yourself up to be a perfectionist. Well, I love a lot of that. I also think that, you know, content is what’s most important. So if it creating that content meeting. Getting a higher production and all that takes away from the actual message or the joke in your case, then I think you’re ruining it.
You’re kind of going backwards. And, I see this a lot in the photo video world where. And I do it myself. I have to, I always have to take myself a setback. It doesn’t always have to be this perfectly produced item just has to be interesting, you know, make somebody think or, or maybe just the background’s really cool that you’re at.
It could still be shot with a phone. You know, it doesn’t have to be with my big camera and a drone and 14 different edits. Right. so let’s talk about writing. how did you decide to do a book first and foremost? Like how did that even thought come up in your head? Well, I got a suggestion from. Alex , who’s a great mentor.
And he was like, you got to write a book. And I, cause he, he pushed me to be like, all right, so you gotta just be Lauren I’m Lauren. And I have characters, like that’s the way to do this. And so, I mean, I guess the theme throughout this is like, you got to listen to good suggestions from people who know what they’re doing, because you don’t know what you’re doing.
And like they have to like feel right for you. Cause I’ve gotten the wrong suggestions and I, they haven’t felt right. And I followed them to dead ends. So I think it’s really important to like, feel like what feels good. And it was really scary, the idea of writing a book, but it felt thrilling. And I thought about what I had and I thought people do ask me, what is it like to be Melania?
And, and I day, people also also asked me that when I was doing a Greta Garbo show and I was like, I do. Kinda know you do get these like insights into a character by being them. And so that’s what, so that’s why I started this whole inside Melania thing, because it was like, I do actually like all of the stuff that’s coming out about her.
I knew already I’m like, I guess what, I put out an article that said, Melania Trump is an asshole. I told you. So, because. I didn’t need tapes. I slipped right inside her. Yes. I didn’t intend to this. Be a dirty joke by the way, say the title of my book and just someone pointed that out on Twitter. And then I was like, now I’m going to use it.
Thank you. Thank you. But, so I started, I locked myself up in a, in a hotel room in key West. My partner was going down there and we had a hotel room and I was like, let me see if I can write a book. And I was doing some shows down there, which was super fun. So I did some shows at night and wrote during the day.
And then at the end of it, I was like, Oh, I think I might have a little book here. And I thought it would be like, like a small little book and then. And it was mostly like me telling you what I know by impersonating. Then I had some ideas for comedy pieces and people were like, those are really fun. Can you write more of those?
When I had a few people read it? And so I write more, more of them and then I teamed up with Eckhart’s press to publish it. And they were like, how about even more of them? So then I, more of them, which meant more research, more work, all of that, but it was a great experience. and so that is, that is basically how it came to be.
And I knew it was timely. I knew it was important because it was giving insight into someone that no one seems to understand. and kind of giving you a full for you through three 60 view from like everything I kind of know and have learned. Yeah. And also making you laugh. Cause there’s like a split between hysterical rants and then just humor essays.
Yeah. And then any, any tips or tricks to writing in general, whether it’s for the book or for just writing jokes, your stand up in eight, anything there right every day. Yeah. Right. Every day, create a list of tasks and do them. Don’t get hung up in research. research is important. Essential. It drives me nuts when people don’t do it.
Cause you can tell, but you need to like put the research away and just right at some point, get a community of people around you. There’s so many feedback groups on Facebook. You gotta be careful cause you want to know who you’re getting feedback from. And that can really be hard, but start to find there are better Facebook groups.
There’s one that I’m part of. And it’s really great. And if you want to be part of it, DME and I can invite you cause it’s like a private one. So, you know, there’s ones that. Are better than others and you can get really good feedback. I took a class that was helpful, because it’s deadlines and as a community and actually that the group of people in that class continue to meet.
So that’s more deadlines, more feedback from people I trust. and so it’s a matter of just like taking time every day to do it and whatever you can do. The other thing is when you’re writing a book is that you should understand it’s actually a significant part of your day. it would take me two to three hours of writing a day, at least.
And I thought this is no big deal. I could keep everything else going on in my life.
that was really hard. I was a shitty friend, a shitty partner, a shitty person, but next time I might still be a shitty human, but I will let her ever know first, like the next three months, I’m, you’re not really going to see me. I’m going to be always kind of stressed out. but I’m writing a book, so just be prepared.
I love you. I love that. You, you mentioned, some mentor, beforehand. any mentors that maybe you could just tell a little bit more story about your mentor or any mentorships that has helped you along your way? there’s so many, there’s so many wonderful people that have helped me. Well, one person that like took interest early in my career.
Well, a few people like took an interest early in my career in that really, spurred me on, one is Kate Bornstein who is just a queer idle and an idol in the queer world. And she. Was so sweet. I was her like, how was her house sitter? And she was just so, so she came to my show, she wrote a review for me.
She introduced me to people. I’m like, I can’t, I can’t just having someone like her just admire what I was doing and support me was just made a big difference. And that just makes a big, like, you really can help young people by just being interested in what they’re doing. Then another person is, Okay, so this is sorry.
So, so I had, I was like, I’m going to get on the L word. I’m a queer actor. Like I’m going to be on the L word. This was when it was the first rendition of the L word. And I looked up who casts the L word. And I saw it Pat McCorkell, and I called Pat McGrew coracle and I was like, I want to be your intern.
And she was just that day someone had quit. So they call me in and I said, I can only do this like twice or three times a week. And they were like, Okay. And they said to me, Pat never does this for a neat one. Like she does not do this. Then I like had happened to get into bus magazine and I like brought it in.
I had like a full page picture and I was like, Oh yeah, look at me. Like, one of my characters is in bust. Just like put it there. And she was like, Oh shit. And then she brought, She brought a bunch of the whole office to see my solo show and in the back of Stonewall, in like a shitty gay bar in infamous of course, the famous, the famous Stonewall bar, but it’s, you know, not Broadway, which is what Pat that’s her caliber.
And, and she came and she brought the whole office and she wrote a review for me. For it, then the thing that, like, she really two things, pieces of advice. And she was more of like, for her, it was like the support and the actions like gave me such like a lot of confidence. And do you know, she tried to introduce me to people with two people and that, and that helped, but she’s gay told me two things is one.
I didn’t know what pal Joey was. And she was like, That was like, you know, the first dah, dah, dah, dah. And she told me what it was in like a few tier sentences and then walked out and I was like, I got to know my history. I got to know you can’t be in this business and not know like, who came before you pal.
Joey was a Broadway play by the way, musical. So. The next. And so that really spurred me into like really taking seriously, like learning my history of the business and the second thing, because people aren’t gonna keep serious people. Aren’t going to take you seriously unless you take this serious. So the next thing is that I finished doing my solo play.
I went to like Stockholm, Sweden to perform and came back and I had some meetings, but nothing like. super crazy came out of the meetings, which is like life. This is how it goes, right? The meetings and meetings. And. I was like, Pat, what do I do? Like, I felt so like, you know, a boat, actually, I was not used to this experience.
That’s is like, I felt like, Oh my God, I’m a boater drift. What do I do? And she was, yeah, just keep doing it. This is, this is how it goes.
Just keep paddling. Yeah. And I’ll never, I’ll never forget that. I’ll never, I’ll never forget that. And she just, when I put on my book, she sent me an email and she just said, I’m just so proud of you and for the woman, she did discover Matt Damon. I was like, well, that’s pretty good. Yeah. Pat is nets. No joke.
Yeah. Yeah. That’s amazing. So what’s one of the craziest or most memorable things during this, during your career. most memorable, I think anytime I get on a plane for a gig it’s it’s I think like this is the life I just didn’t like, yeah, there is nothing like being a guest artist. There’s nothing like it going somewhere else and performing and having people like expecting you, waiting for you and like hoping for your show.
Like there’s nothing like that. There there’s nothing like that. And any time, I just want to do that more and more because it’s so, and it’s, and it’s, you know, it’s, it’s just so, it’s so powerful when it all works out. So what does success look like for you? Like how do you, how do you know when you’ve made it or what you want to be at, or that’s a really hard question to answer and one that I’m actually struggling with right now.
I mean, you can, in this business, You can always feel like a failure. And I guess this is Jamie in any business. Cause you can always think, well, I don’t have as much as that person, no matter what I mean, when I think back to like who I was or where I came up, grew up with, like, I am a success, like of course, because I’m working artists like that is a success in itself.
Like I’ve already beaten the odds that I’m still doing this. Like most people, like I run into people and like, again, most people quit and even the people who are serious, they run out of steam at some point. And some people just have to quit for because it’s hard financially. So they just need something more steady.
They might have kids. That’s a dream killer. Sorry. but there are people who work it out, but yeah. it’s hard. So, you know, I think success is, has to be because the other thing too, in my business is that everything is beyond my control. I can’t control it. There was a covert pandemic. I had a 23 city, 30 day tour planned for may and June.
It was going to be basically what I’m saying, like touring artists, like that was going to be like a major step towards that being it, you know, that was going to be what I was going to do. And the whole thing was canceled. For an a show that I, we will never do live. We’ve never, we had a dress rehearsal on March 14th for the show that was canceled.
We’ve never done this show live. We’ve only done it in Vail all the way through with tech, everything was canceled. So. I cannot control anything. And that’s, and this is just like, you know, world events, not to mention, like, I can’t control, like if it rains on a night and the show is packed, when a review is there, I can control if like someone doesn’t like the book, it doesn’t like me.
I can control some, like if I have lost roles because of the color of my hair, did it match the furniture? Life is completely out of my control and in what I do. And so then how do you define success? And for me, I think it just has to be like the successes, the fact that I get up to do and do this every day, because if I make it anything else, it’s just setting myself up for misery.
You know, and it’s not to say that I’m like some Buddha and I’m just like, I do it every day and I feel great. I don’t know. I feel shitty all the time. Okay. All the time. Yeah. what about any, any regrets along the way? Oh, Oh yes. Definitely. I don’t like regrets, but I would just say, and this is what I say to anyone starting, probably in anything, but I’m going to say this for show business and you can apply it to your realm of life.
Is that. Do the thing that you. Set out to do, and you have an original, let’s just say micro on a project. And also this applies to your career micro in a project. You know what, like you you’re the initial sparkler. When I started my Greta Garbo play, I was like, it was a comedy. The first reading everyone was laughing.
It was absurd. Greta Garbo was like this crazy old lady. And then I got influenced by people who had this idea that it had to be serious drama and it. People loved it still. And people tell me, don’t say that, but I feel like it shit on the project and I, and people are, you need to read it, write it as an absurd play in a of comedy.
And like, maybe that will happen. Maybe I will become the crazy old lady. And then I will, when I’m like 70, remind the play and do it age appropriately. But, but I think I lost, I didn’t. Yeah, I knew you’re the creator. You’re the boss. Everyone else is replaceable. If they don’t see if they do not align with your vision.
And they do not believe in you, especially that they don’t believe in you. They need to go, they might be talented. They might be well connected, but if they don’t get it, there’s no point. It’s just like a, it’s just like a startup. I mean, you’ve got to believe in it. You gotta believe in the product, and the service and what you’re doing.
cause it’s not easy. what about like, looking back? Okay. Going back to high score, whatever it was like any advice you would give yourself, looking back, maybe your 16 year old self. Hm. I would say to be really proud of being different. That is, it breaks my heart. When I see people who felt like I did and my friend’s son is having trouble.
Cause he’s feels like he’s different in why can’t I be like everyone else? And I’d say. Oh my God, baby. You’re not like everyone else. That’s, that’s what we all want. Now, as soon as the older you get, the more different you want to be. Yeah. Yes, totally, totally. And it’s just to be like, be really proud of being weird and different.
So let’s circle back around to the book a little bit. So how has that been going? Like with COVID I know obviously your tour would have been a big hit to, to push the book, but I also think that COVID. PR and maybe perhaps you were already, doing great yeah. On social media and pushing out all that content.
But has that helped a little bit with the, with the, with covert and pushing content or, you know, how has it been going? any, you know, there’s any trials or tribulations going on with the book release? Well, coven did is gave me time to focus a little more on online platform in like a very focused way, because there’s nothing else to do.
So that was helpful. And I felt like I learn I’ve been learning a lot cause it’s still things aren’t open. So I’m still kind of in that same position. So it’s been helpful. Like we were able to explore Tech-Talk we would have never had that time. Cause it’s a whole other thing. So. Vast been helpful in terms of expanding and understanding the, the book.
Environment of social media, a lot more in what people are doing and get followers and how it all really goes down was really, really has been really helpful in, in understanding. So that’s like a positive, I think marketing books in person is very powerful and is something this book has missed. however, doing we’ve done like online shows for bookstores that I would’ve never, there were some bookstores that said no.
And because we said, Hey, I’ll come in and I’ll do a show for you guys, an online show for free. it’s called, we’ll do the Melania Trump roadshow for you and the monitor. Ambrogio get out the vote and get me out of the white house of garbage. so we’ll do an online version of that and try to like sell some books that way.
And these bookstores said no, but then they said yes to the show because they were like scrambling to try to get some momentum. And so now I have relationships with those booksellers that I didn’t have before. I think it’s like three more stores that wouldn’t have had, and it’s really hard to get into, but I don’t know if anyone knows this.
It’s really hard to get into a bookstore. And now I personally know. A bunch of booksellers that I wouldn’t have known otherwise. So, and then they know other booksellers, so it’s just, it’s all, it’s very helpful. Like one hand washes the other with that. So, that’s, that’s an example of something positive that’s happened.
Also, I would have never had time for Amazon ads at something and go, I don’t know yet to be decided how successful that will be. We actually do not publish in Amazon, the paper book. because you can go get the [email protected] We’re going to experiment with ads and then putting it available on Amazon print.
and seeing if we get to maybe make a better profit margin. If we sell more, we’ll see that way. Yeah, definitely. I noticed the Kindle additions on Amazon and obviously, and, and on audible as well. so, but you know, those books, I always love those kind of books that are in print. I am a big Kindle reader, but I do like a book that you could just open up and read it for a minute and put it back down.
I don’t do that with the Kindle. So, so, well, I’ll read it front to back as opposed to just jump around a little bit. so was millennia Trump Oleum model? Definitely not. What do you mean I do, I do the model. I modeled my mother lingerie in many circumstance. So. You mentioned tick talk. Is there any, is there a bit that you’re working on with that with, you know, obviously that’s, Trump’s kind of battle with tick is anything working there?
I did do a video that was like, Melanie, your hair plugs look so full today. Don’t delete the doc.
It looks so even don’t get it. So I just.
I love all that stuff. so I, I guess this is my last question. I always in the podcast this way and, and you can take it any way you wish, but how would you like to be remembered? I mean, the way every comedian wants to do is that I made people laugh and feel good. Well, I love it, Lauren. It was a super pleasure to have you on establishing your empire podcast. I really appreciate your time. it’s awesome. Book inside Milania available a lot of different places. there’ll be a ton of links below and check it out.
Thank you. All right. Cheers.
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