The Runway Diva Says. . . Is an online advice column for aspiring models. As a 20 year veteran of the fashion industry as a plus sized model, I have found in my travels that most aspiring models, no matter their size, don't have a clue of the tools needed to become a successful model. Hopefully, I can help make their journey a little easier. Please Email me your questions to

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Auditioning Tips for F.A.T. Chance 2007

As many of you have heard by now....word on the street is that Mo'Nique's F.A.T. Chance 2007 is filming in Paris, France!!!!! YAY!!!! (I LOVE That City!!!)

Now I get stopped on the street nearly every day and I receive tons of emails asking the same questions from women who either:

Want to know when the next audition for FAT Chance is?

Auditioned last year and didn't get selected and want to know why?

Are thinking of Auditioning but think they are too old/not pretty enough/not a model etc... (you can see where I am going with this one...right?)

Well, I have some answers, a few suggestions and a little advice for those coming out to audition in 2007:

We don't begin to go back on the road for the new season of FAT Chance until around Feb-Mar 2007. But then this gives you plenty of time to start to get yourself together doesn't it? You need to keep checking the Oxygen Website ( or keep checking Mo'Nique's site ( for updates on the dates and cities that we will be holding the castings in.

In the meantime....Here's a peek into how you need to prepare:

1. Be honest. I am not interested in someone who comes in and shows me "what they think I want to see"....all I am interested in is who you are, and how did you come to be the person you are.

2. Be prepared...think about what may be asked of you.....ask yourself honestly why YOU should be Miss F.A.T. and then you need to be able to tell us clearly and passionately why we should pick YOU out of all of the THOUSANDS of women that we will see.

3. Do not come with a sad story if it's not yours to tell.....we want to hear YOUR story...the one that's UNIQUE to YOU and YOU alone.

4. The first thing that usually happens at these auditions is that they give you a number and take your photo...AS SOON AS YOU that means you should groom yourself BEFORE you arrive. You only get one chance to make a first impression....make it a good one.

FYI: Please know that there will be many producers at the auditions and there is no guarantee that you will even get to audition for me during the preliminary know that these are MY SUGGESTIONS based on what I have seen thus far....the other producers may be looking for something totally different from what I am looking at. But I hope that you will find my information helpful to you and I look forward to meeting you all next year!

Have a Safe and Happy Thanksgiving Family!

Friday, November 03, 2006

ProjectCURVES Atlanta 2006 Feedback

As many of you already know, I was a guest speaker at the ProjectCURVES Conference, held Oct 21-23 in Atlanta, Georgia. My topic was called "Modeling 101 - The Basics" and I have gotten some of the most wonderful emails from some of the participants of the conference. I thought I would share them with you, so you all can read about what you missed AND you can begin saving your "coins" for the next stop on the ProjectCURVES Express!



Hey Sharon:

I hope this email reaches you in good health. I wanted to thank you for your inspiring voice. Between you and Diva (Gwen) I am always blessed to be in your presence. You gave so much valuable information at Project Curves, I’m just modeling it up every where I got. My runway/hallway to the bathroom is my best catwalk. I am working on your suggestions, I paid for them, so I’m not putting them out there, but I just wanted to thank you for your time, positive energy, your smile, and you capability to give hope.

I was reading your response to an inquiry of your opinion on the smaller models in the plus size spectrum. I claim this section of the industry as well. I am a 12/14, and boy is it hard getting work. I know I’m a natural model because of my hair, and I know I have a few mountains to climb as well as claim, but hey, I love the challenge! They should have never told this Trinidadian girl “NO”, because now I want it even that more! So endless props to you and your crew, I’m always rooting for you. I’ll see you at the next fabulous event.

Ciao chica!!

R. Chappin

All of the ladies were wonderful to me and I included one very special letter from a BEAUTIFUL sista from the ATL, who, when I complimented her on her beautiful bracelet....promptly took it off and gave it to me (Ya'll know I LOVE PRESENTS!!!!!).

**Lady Di!!! I am LOVING MY BRACELET!!!! Thanks so much!!

Hi Sharon,

I hope that all is well with you and that God is granting you your well wishes. You asked me to send you an email after meeting you at event in Atlanta, Georgia. (I was the one who gave you the bracelet, remember?) Anyway, I hope you had a safe trip back home and please, please, please, whenever you are back in Atlanta, call me so that I can really show you around. It’s sad that you only ate Chick-Fil-A while here, because we hold in our beloved city some of the most fabulous restaurants.

I’m glad that I decided to attend the fashion show that night b/c I’d originally planned to give my friend an excuse for not coming to her screening of “Big Boned Women”. I was tremendously encouraged and inspired by what I saw, and I’ve decided to try and enter a few shows myself. It’s hard with my schedule to try and pursue some of my own goals and dreams, because I’ve made the dreams of other my own. I think it’s high time for me to get moving and start accomplishing some of the things on my ‘to-do-in-life’ list. J

Anyway, I know you are tremendously busy working your butt off. If you are on my space, I’m going to send you a request to add, so act like you know me, ok?!

Take care,

DiShan A.K.A. Lady Di


Miss Sharon,

I hope that all is well after your trip to Atlanta. I was one of the attendees. My name is Tyler Livingston and I hope that you remember me. I wanted to write and tell you how inspiring you were. You are such a beautiful strong woman that makes me proud to be a full figured woman. I took a lot away from the event. I'm excited to get started but confused at where to start? I don't have any pictures yet. I live in a small town so I don't have much opportunity here. I'm ready to kick off my career. I'm sure that you get a lot of mail and I don't want to take up all of your time but any advice that you could give me would help a lot. Thank you for your time. And at the end of the event you told me " you should really do this you have a great face" And at that point I knew I should be doing this. Thank you God bless!

-Tyler Ann Livingston-