The following are excerpts from a telephone and e-mail exchange with author Jamie Arindaeng.
Can you tell me a little bit about your book?
“I started off doing extra work four years ago when the industry first came here and I noticed on set that a lot of people were confused about things like jargon and were just scattered. No one really knew what to do and no one on set really offered help, so I decided I needed to write a book about those type of things.”
Can you tell me more about your acting experience?
“Since I was young, I always had a dream of being in commercials. It was one thing to create them for business clients, but another to actually book a local or national commercial for myself. In 2008 as the film industry was becoming more prevalent in Michigan, I decided to utilize my creative side and learn as much as I could about the business. To date, I have been cast as a featured extra in many major films, I am also an experienced stand-in and have had a leading role and several supporting.”
When and why did you start writing? And why did you write this book?
“Two years ago I started the writing process, it took a while, but I collaborated with a friend and had my own thoughts here along with some stories from my friends. I just knew that I needed to help people; I have a passion for that. I wanted to write a book that explained what it’s like to work on set, that it is fun but it is also a job, and even though it doesn’t pay that great there are other opportunities.”
Why did you decide to write about tips for actors?
“Simply because of the need I saw and knowing that there was nothing else like it out there. I have always been a creative person in designing marketing materials and websites but never knew how to express that in writing. When I decided I needed to help others on set with some type of guide so to speak, it just came easy to me to share what I have learned and put those thoughts down on paper in a funny yet heartfelt way.”
Is this your first published piece?
“It is! I’m thinking about another book, but for now, I’m just focusing on my newly released book and ways to market it. I never considered myself a writer. I never considered this my forte, but seeing the great reviews this book is getting, it just makes me very proud.”
Do you have any advice for up and coming actors?
“I would read this book and I m not just saying it because I wrote it, but I would. Not all sets are created equal and this book is just a compilation of some things I have learned and they are very helpful. I would treat acting and being on set as a job. It’s fun but it is also daunting. There are other aspects to this world that people don’t think about.”