R-E-S-P-E-C-T! Find out what it means to me!
I just saw a bit of your Rentmen video interview, and have glanced at your blog. This was enough to send you a “thank you” for your honesty, and for representing someone with talent and intelligence in the adult field. Your pictures are great, and I believe you promised more adult work to come. I got a “boner” when you described escorting as a “promotion” you had given yourself.
My background is also in the performing arts, and I am contemplating more adult work (I have done some), in order to help me with a career change that I have already started, toward graphic/digital design. I am now contemplating a committed effort toward more videos and escorting in order to continue this effort, and so I found your profile to be inspiring and helpful.
I do wonder if you have felt respected in your work, since you seemed to indicate that some clients are not very nice. I have noticed a lot of judgmental gays, even though they pay for companionship and are avid consumers of porn. I imagine you must be finding your way, or you would not have done the video interview.
Good luck to you,
First, thank you for taking the time to write such a gracious letter to me. You (and many of my colleagues) prove the point I seek to make: Adult Entertainers can be (and often are) just as intelligent, kind, educated, hard working, and polite as anyone else. The voice in your email is a smart one, and I am excited to hear from someone whose story is so similar to mine.
As to your question concerning respect. I have danced in clubs, done videos, and escorted. Each is satisfying in its own way, but each also attracts criticism in its own way. Of the three, the dancing created the most numerous opportunities for disrespect (because of the face-to-face interaction with so many people); the videos provided the most public airing of insults (see: -1 + 1 = 0); and the escorting has created the most personalized forms of disrespect (given the very intimate nature of the interactions).
When you are dancing (nearly) nude, you will be open to all sorts of potshots from people in the audience. When you are on the internet this is also the case, but the people saying whatever comes to their small minds will be published for the world to see (and you probably won’t have had the pleasure of meeting the anonymous hypocrite[s] in question). And when you escort you may find yourself at the whim of timewasters and powerhungry clients who seek to dominate you with issues surrounding money.
My advice is this: If you dance, be as friendly as you can without allowing people to take advantage of you. Your bar should have a “no harrassment” policy in place. If someone is disrespectful and/or violent toward you, have his sorry ass ejected and/or banned. Do not work for a club that doesn’t support you in this manner.
If you are going to do video, you have to simply own that there is a whole strand of the human population that thrives on negativity. Make the choice to not read the discussion boards (e.g. SeanCodyReviews.com, JustUsBoys.com, etc.). They are full of unhelpful, stupid, and mean commentary that will do nothing to make you better as a person, artist, or entertainer. Look for constructive criticism, but do not look for it in those review boards.
And finally: If you decide to go into escorting, I would strongly advise that you NOT look to the forum at Daddy’s Reviews. Contact escorts directly with questions. The threads at Daddy’s take on a decidedly confrontational tone at all turns, and any value in the information you might find there gets drowned out by the ridiculous flame wars and peevish attitudes of most of the clients there (many of whom do not even hire, but merely spout off threats to not hire you if you have the audacity to formulate your own thoughts). There is very little input from escorts on those threads anymore, because most of us don’t feel like being harrassed with arguments. Listen to the advice I ignored: Do not become involved at Daddy’s. You will gain nothing from the exchanges.
Ultimately you have to define your terms for yourself. I am not obliged for any reason whatsoever to be anyone for someone else. I am Devon Hunter. You have to be Sonny. You cannot maintain any other facade. Be exactly who you are (while still being professional and kind), and extend to people the respect you want from them. But remember my platinum rule: Do unto YOURSELF as you would have others do unto you. Do not tolerate attacks to your sense of self just for money. There are lots of clients who will treat you nicely, so do not feel obligated to put up with those who would transform you into something you are not.
I wish you success,