I think I am speaking for all unknown writers and artists when I say that seeking publicity for one’s work is just as hard, if not harder than producing the work in the first place. Artists (I am including writers here in this article from now on), just want to get on with the next piece of work. Working out novel ways of actually selling them is alien and probably uses a different part of the brain than creating work does, but I don’t know about that.
Seeking publicity certainly seemed alien to me when I first started, and I still often hear people say that pushing one’s work is tantamount to begging. I understand that sentiment, but I can’t afford the luxury of living by it. I know that most artists have to have a day job to pay the bills, but that is not possible for me, and, I guess for lots of others too. I am not saying that the world owes us a living if what we produce is poor value for money.
It’s just that most have arrived at ‘creation’ from other jobs, and so the whole process from conception through creating, seeking publicity and eventually selling can be daunting. It certainly was to me.
When I wrote my first novel, which took me five years, I thought there’d be stacks of people waiting to take it further. I had made the mistake, coming from outside the leisure industry (show business), of thinking that the performance was the hard part. I now know that it isn’t; getting someone to put it on and getting others to come to see it, is.
It was a huge kick in the pants to realise that, but if you see it as another skillset to master, you will get on with seeking publicity. If you don’t, no-one will ever read your books but your friends and family.
Perhaps, I’ll continue this chat about seeking publicity tomorrow, but to close today, I thought I’d tell you that the three huge drains near the lane entrance to our house now have grills covering them and that makes me feel a lot safer, since the council still hasn’t replaced the street lamp.
All the best,
Podcast: Seeking Publicity