Monday, March 07, 2005

Why I work with an agency.

In a comment, left at the post on my meeting with Marie, I was asked why I didn’t work as an independent. This is a question that I get regularly and it is something that I’ve considered and evaluate regularly. But I always reach the conclusion that working through Marie better meets my needs.

The argument for being independent is often summed up as ‘you’re not working for some blood sucking leech’ and ‘you get to keep all of the money’. Leech could be a description of any employer, after all the majority of the benefits of the workers labor flows to the employer (as well as most all of the risk). For my part I am trying, some what Quixotely but with some success, to change the dynamic of my relationship with Marie from one of my working for her to one where she is my agent and represents me in much the manner that agents represent models and actors.

The agency does provide benefits, managing bookings, vetting clients, handling payment (in my case), providing a contact who always knows where I am and who I’m with. This of course comes with a cost but frankly I like getting a phone call telling me about a date, showing up and then getting paid is worth it. The idea of setting up a web site, placing it at the various directories and then dealing with all the inquiries is something I don’t want to do

I also don’t feel that I would make as much money, particularly in the short term. Let me explain. I’ve come to believe that having a career in prostitution comes with its own box. At some point I am going to want to break free of these strictures and it is quite likely that some morning I’m going to wake up and say I quit. I have a self-renewing three-month contract with myself regarding being a prostitute. The current agreement runs through the end of June where upon I will take time off. I don’t know what I’m going to do in when I return. Building a business is a long-term proposition. Olympia and Lara who have done this have been at it for two or more years, I can’t make that commitment.

I also question whether as an independent I could charge as much as I do through Marie. Since Anne Marie proved the market, the number of paid companions charging in the mid to high four figures per day has become quite competitive making knowledge of and access to men who can afford such sums valuable. Marie has proved to me that she has that knowledge and access. As an independent I would have to build the clientele. Even if I took my regulars with me this would be a long term project.

Yes Marie can be manipulative and if you don don’t ask the right questions or enough questions she might slide something past you, but the same can be said for all the business people I deal with as a contract worker. I’ve had marketing clients try to expand the scope of a project but not change my compensation and when working for a Paris agency who was handling the European marketing for an American company, the client’s marketing manager asked me to partake in a meeting. When the Paris agency billed for the time the client resisted paying, claiming that it was beyond the scope of the project.

I admit that I have no way to compare other agencies to my experience with Marie and for all I know she could be unique, but I do know she has some perspective. A week after the necklace episode I had lunch with Marie and she brought it up apologetically saying, “I guess I was pretty transparent.” Yup.


Related to my realization that I may leave the business suddenly and my plans to take the summer off, I've decided to focus on peddling my ass for the next couple of months. Though I have found a couple of small projects to work on.


What's this shit in the NYT fashion & style section that Mary-Kate Olsen is a diva of dumpster fashion? Six years ago I spent enough time at the Goodwill and Salvation Army pawing through clothes that people thought I worked there. But damn she's cute.



Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think it's a good thing that you are thinking hard about the future. It's an industry that puts a premium on youth, and there's a very high and fast 'burn' rate for the 'hands on' talent. Everyone needs to be considering their next move when they think they want to move up and out from where they are.

Me, I had no idea that someone like Ann Marie could charge that much for a weekend of escorting. No wonder the field is getting crowded! I'm sure she's good at what she does, but again this is probably a life that usually can not continue too long into your 30's. Let's hope she's stocking it away for her breakaway too. She may be doing that with all her business ventures on her new site.

And I'm betting that you look way better than Mary-Kate Olsen. Twiggy does not even being to cover it. She and her sister are a verifiable industry, but if they had not been child actresses, I think no one would give them a second look. Just another bunch of stuck-up, rich, anorexic kids with little real personality and psycho drama written all over their caved in emaciated faces. I'm sorry, no matter what they wear, I always want to feed them when I see them! They're Not a pretty sight either!

Good Luck on all your plans.--VJ

5:33 AM  
Blogger Garrison Steelle said...

I think, like any business, there are going to be pros and cons and you make the decision based on what is best for you and best fits your personality. That's the only way anything ever makes a lick of sense.

Personally, if an agency called tomorrow and asked me to work in-house again, I'd jump on it. I'm not cut out for freelancing. But, there are others who would die in that environment. It's ultimately a personal choice.


4:29 AM  
Anonymous Jezebel said...

I'm sure she's good at what she does, but again this is probably a life that usually can not continue too long into your 30's.Not always. I know of a woman who began escorting at 42. Depending on marketing, intellect, sex appeal, etc. a woman can work into her fifties as an escort. Not all potential clients want a woman who is extremely young and no matter how well-traveled, doesn't have life experience.

But, kudos Kim on future planning. The way things are going in many industries most people need to do this but can't or don't for a variety of reasons. Even though the retirement age in the US is 65, most people are either forced into early retirement ten years earlier or laid off. If they're in their fifties, thanks to ageism, it's difficult for them to find another job in their field. It happened to my dad and he's in IT.

10:50 PM  
Blogger Brainy Blonde said...

Dear MG,

Thanks for the kind words. I retired long ago, but am glad I could possibly help just a bit way back when ;)

Could you actually tell me where I might find the ad with the quote and girl on the pink bike? I'd very much like to find where I could obtain a poster (or at the least an 8 x 10) of that? Thanks.

Brainy Blonde

8:34 AM  

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