I've been trading a few emails with a young writer who's upset about some of the lack of respect in the biz.
My feeling is, in showbiz, you can have a good attitude about things or a bad attitude. Lots of people have bad attitudes. It does not help. If you want to have a happy life, either you decide, f*** it, I’m going to have a good attitude about all this stuff, and just laugh at the disrespect and hard knocks and bad luck and nepotism and so forth … or just go into a business where merit is more consistently rewarded. Talent and hard work will, eventually, get you where you want to go, but it can easily take ten years.
Look, it's showbiz, Punky. Everything they say about it is true, both the good and the bad. Talent does get rewarded. Talent does get disrespected before it's rewarded.
Also, find one other thing that you like to do, and do that regularly. I've heard that Harrison Ford was a carpenter before he was a movie star. Apparently he’s still a carpenter. When he turned down bad acting gigs, he’d tell his agent, “I’ll just build another cabinet.”
Whether or not that is accurate, it is still true.