Monday, November 5, 2012

I have a new short story coming out.  The Last Performance of the Neighborhood Summer Theatre Festival, published in an anthology called THE FALL.  This collection is a follow-up to SPRING FEVERS , where I had a story called The Idea Exchange.  Regular readers might recall an earlier blog on short stories being good source material for films.  It still holds true.

All of this publishing has my mind working on the subject of promotion, marketing, and the other I-I-I, Me-Me-Me stuff that so many artists, myself included, kind of hate.

Or at least, we pretend to hate it.
In the American South, where I grew up, it's called "blowing your own horn," and it is the height of self-aggrandizing rudeness.  Ask any Southerner who has moved to Los Angeles and you'll hear the same thing, "I just can't get into this talking about myself all the time the way people do out here."

If Southerners in LA are smart, they'll listen to their friends from other parts of the world.  "You've done good work.  You should be proud of it.  There's nothing wrong with letting people know what you're doing and how they can enjoy it."

And let's face it, the spotlight is a big part of the Arts.  Somewhere, deep down inside, we all got into this business because of our desire for that light.  For some this might be all ego-driven.  For others it might be a need to get our message out into the world.  Whatever the case, in many cultures wanting to be in the spotlight is considered a bad thing.
But in a world with nuclear weapons, starvation, drug abuse, genocide, rude drivers, hang nails, Congressional Representatives who won't compromise with each other, and the cancellation of good TV shows, is it really such a bad thing for an artist who has worked hard on something they feel is worth your time – and money – to say, "Hey, put the spotlight on me for a second."

Hopefully, that will take the spotlight off Honey Boo-Boo for a while.

None my above musings help with how to promote your work.  I think each project has its own special needs.  What I am suggesting is that, if you have a hesitation about self-promotion, then get over it.  If you think you don't care about the spotlight, then stop living in denial.  Art is made to entertain.  If you've created something you're proud of, then you're doing the work an injustice if you don't get out there and sell it.

And if you really struggle with self-promotion, then try rolling it into something else – like the opening paragraph of a blog on an entirely different subject.
THE FALL and SPRING FEVERS are available for download from your favorite e-book providers.  If you'd like an old-fashioned printed version, then you can get SPRING FEVERS here.  Look for a POD verson of THE FALL soon.