Kirsty DeVallance is arguably Australia's number one casting director for reality and "fly on the wall" TV. Her company A Cast of Thousands has put together the contestants for The Biggest Loser, Project Runway Australia, The Mole, The One and TEN's upcoming Masterchef Australia.
"Make sure you really want to be involved, have a genuine reason, not just 'I want to be on television'," she says. "The number one rule is don't do it if you think it's going to be the next step to your TV career. Only a couple of people from Big Brother have gotten work. No one else has. Don't come in thinking it's going to be a step up to a TV career because it just doesn't happen."
But to even get into a casting session you first need to tell your story on an application form. How you answer the questions could start or end your chances of simply being seen.
"Make sure you answer the questions properly. Don't give one or two word answers, be descriptive. But one or two word answers I just think 'boring' and I get rid of them.
"Think of the events in your life that have shaped who you are. It gives us an insight into who you are. I always believe everyone has a story in them. Some people think their job might be boring or something about their past is boring, but it's probably quite interesting."
A full length photo and close up is also recommended.
"Spelling doesn't bother me as much," says Kirsty. "Some people write like they're SMSing, but you get used to it."
If you make it to an audition Kirsty says be as honest as you can. Don't try to be too funny.
"In a group dynamic situation I can pick a fake really quickly, and I'll call them on it as well. I can't stand it because I think 'there's nothing more to you than just being the loud guy in the room'. Even quiet people can say something and it will demand everyone's attention. Don't think you know what we're looking for. You don't know what we've seen in Adelaide, Perth or Melbourne. We're not looking for 12 of the same kind of people."
"I'm looking for headstrong teenagers aged 16 or 17, if there are any parents pulling their hair out."