ABBIE COBB

"I absolutely love my job..."

Actress Abbie Cobb knew she wanted to act at a young age. When she heard about AMTC she saved and planned and made her way to the SHINE convention to answer that deep calling. While there she won Best Overall Actor and her life hasn't been the same since. She will tell you however that the road has been anything but smooth and easy. But it has been the challenges that have shaped her most and led her to some of the biggest roles she's played.

Abbie, you've been in LA for a while now, what have you been up to?

I still am recurring on a show called Suburgatory for ABC as "Kimantha." I also just filmed a movie for Sony pictures called Mom's Night Out, starring alongside Patricia Heaton and Sean Astin. It's from the people behind FireproofCourageous, and October Babyand due for release in theaters this coming May. Additionally, I shot a guest starring role for a new series called Intelligence starring LOST'sJosh Holloway. That will air on CBS starting this Spring!

I'm sure it's hard to pick a favorite job, but tell me about one!

I think whatever show I'm currently filming is my favorite! I absolutely love my job and treasure each opportunity I have to explore new characters. I always seem to get caught up in the moment and fall hard for whatever production I'm presently working with. But if I had to get specific and was forced to choose only a couple, I'd say that I really enjoyed my character on Grey's Anatomy. I also thought Longmire and Intelligence (airing this Spring) were some of the more difficult roles I've tackled. I enjoy a challenge!

When you came to SHINE, you were pretty young and inexperienced about the business, as many are. Looking back, what did AMTC do most for you?

I didn't know what to expect when I attended AMTC the first time. But you better believe I am grateful I went for it! The whole event is focused on talent and faith, and growing, merging, and balancing the two. I cannot express to you what an amazing opportunity this was! Can you even imagine being able to practice, pursue, fail, get back up, and learn in an environment that is coated with people of moral and family values? Unbelievable. What a privilege it was to participate. I loved the experience so much I came back the next year.

You wrote a book about your early career challenges, Stuck on the Ferris Wheel. What kinds of things did you overcome?

When you make the decision to move from your art being a hobby to your art being a profession, it's scary, because it takes an investment of your time, it takes a financial investment, it takes your energy and your thought and strength. And so that leap of faith for me just came because I felt something inside of me saying "This is what you're meant to do." And I felt incredibly fulfilled by that. And I felt a calling on my life to pursue this. And if I had done anything else in life that had been a little bit easier, a little bit less expensive, a little less heartbreaking, I don't think I'd be doing what I was born to do. Sort of like the movie Chariots of Fire. There's a line in there that's really great that says "When I run I feel His pleasure." And I feel that way with acting.

So where does faith and art meet for you in this business?

There is a spiritual side to being a creative artist. If you choose to ignore that, you do so at your own risk. I can't imagine what my life as an actor would be like if I did not have my faith. The rejection in this industry, the constant drain on your emotions, and the brutality of being in the trenches in a town like LA will all deflate your dreams in a heartbeat if you don't have something solid to fall back on.

How would you sum that up for a young person looking to do the kinds of things you're doing?

You may not be a religious person. You may not be comfortable with the idea of being "spiritual." You may not even know what you believe. If that's true, I challenge you to figure out what you do believe before you make the move to pursue the industry. Do some homework. Do some soul searching. You really must be grounded in who you are and what you believe if you're going to survive in this industry, never mind be successful in it.