For the last three years I have been reviewing books on acting for a drama weekly. However, I haven’t yet found a book on acting that compares to real acting experience. Now, I’m not saying that acting books are worthless because they have their place. These books contain an almost encyclopedic discussion of various acting methodologies and approaches. These books also can also provide useful contact information that might take a while to find on your own. Nevertheless, a book on acting cannot take the place of a good acting course.Acting books can help you to take your first steps into the world of acting. After that, it is all up to you. You can study all of the books on acting that you want, and try out every acting technique known to man on your own, but they are worthless if you can not use them to impress a director. Acting may require a lot of methodology, but the methodology is not the point. Acting is about figuring out what you want to do and finding ways to do it. Some professional actors know so many techniques that they write acting books on their own, but others know very little. Diving into the mind of the character to make him or her come alive is enough for them.
You should consider getting a few drama books instead of spending hard earned money that actors tend to have in such small quantities on acting books. Classic books of plays are an actor’s best friend. After all, theater is one of the original art forms. You can strengthen your acting by delving more deeply into theatrical arts. Even movie actors can attest to the benefit of reading drama books. In fact, many of the best movie actors started out with Shakespearean acting courses. Only a select few actually spend their time reading acting books.
Now, don’t get me wrong because I’m not trying to discourage you entirely. Go ahead and read acting books if you are inspired by reading them. Spending time with whatever inspires you to act is important and worthwhile. Just remember that the purpose of these acting books is inspiration and ideas. None of them will give you real acting experience, although they can be great sources. You will have to take acting courses, go to acting workshops, and hustle for jobs like the rest of the acting world if you want to gain valuable acting experience.