Selfish self-promotion? Trust friends. They can do a better job describing what you do better than you can because they have a better chance of seeing you the way others will. Too frequently, self-promotion becomes a litany of caveats, apologies, and disclaimers because the self sees the cracks from the inside, including the flaws that others will never notice. Don Scoby and I met for yet again because we’re cooperating on so many projects. Reading his blog about our discussion surprised me, and made me realize that most of us probably don’t realize how busy we are and how much we’re accomplishing.
Before I forget, I’ll insert our next public event. Tuesday, March 19, 6:30, almost exactly a week from now as I type, Don and I will reprise our presentation about self-publishing. If you can drop by the Langley Library (the one on Whidbey Island, not the one for the CIA or the one in BC), drop in for about an hour of how the publishing world has changed, making it easier for writers to become authors.
If you can attend, great! If not, check my YouTube channel. We may live-stream the event. Watch it real-time or later at your leisure.
In my head, he isn’t Don. He’s the bagpiping biscotti baker. There are a couple of clues. He plays the bagpipes professionally. (Got a gig that pays him appropriately?) He started Whidbey Island Baking Company, and launched a line of biscotti and cookies, at least. That led to his cookbook, Make Your Own Darn Good Cookies. (Available now!) Let’s see, comfortable on stage, current experience self-publishing, and a good reason to reprise my talks on Modern Self-Publishing, but as a duet (metaphorically.) But hey, we’re creative folks; so, we may take the presentation on the road, may extend it into a workshop, and may use this opportunity to reinvigorate the previous and grander workshop (Madrona Workshop Troupe). And, we’re writers so while we played with more ideas based on his bagpiping and baking, we also found overlapping interests in our independent sci-fi series that may work better in the same literary universe, as well as a foodie anthology that I’ve been working on.
Ironically, or maybe typically, I’ve been so busy with those various projects that I don’t mention them as frequently as marketing experts would recommend. It’s nice to have someone help, and it’s nice to see my efforts mentioned without all of the cracks I see from the inside.
After my “gee” and “aw, shucks” moments I laughed. He described the list he saw that we could work on in the time it took him to eat a burger (not as sloppily as he suggested) and for me to eat fish & chips (my standard choice when eating in a bar by the water.) I laughed because I know I am also working on the sequel to the Dream. Invest. Live. (the book that is the basis for this blog, a book that needs a new title, too), and my next book in the photo essay series of Twelve Months at fill-in-the-blank. I hope to have Twelve Months at Maxwelton Beach produced and published (but not necessarily delivered) by our talk on Tuesday.
What could get in the way of finishing a book within the next seven days? Real estate is getting busy as the snow melts away. I’m also writing for 360Modern.com, and considering a part-time writing gig (that probably pays well, but can I set aside my other tasks and get back to them later? Maybe not.) There’s also taking photos for the next essay, because twelve month studies require attending to them every month. In the meantime, I also am helping non-real estate clients with their promotions and art projects.
It’s all good. It’s also the source of inspiration for the previous post It Should Be Easier, because all of that work does not add up to paying all of my bills. The potential is there, and I’m in far better shape now that I’ve paid off my credit card; but potential doesn’t come with checks attached.
There are limits. I don’t expect anyone to remember that entire list of tasks. I can’t recall every item either. I simply jump from task to task to task, being thankful for sales and receipts that follow some of the work. Hopefully the rest of the compensation comes later, but not too much later. Taxes are too near.
I know that I am not alone.
Go back to that post I just mentioned; It Should Be Easier. I have trouble remembering my entire list, and don’t give each endeavour the attention it deserves. Don (and others) help with that. I can’t know everything Don (and others) is working on. I can celebrate the bits I know, but each of us is working harder than others can know. Rather than take on the impossible task of understanding everything someone is doing, it’s easier to applaud them for things they may not emphasize enough, to introduce them to others who might help, and maybe even buy what they’re creating (as finances allow.)
Writers, artists, entrepreneurs, and advocates frequently ask me for advice about which tool to use, which web site is best, which marketing avenue to pursue. I’m impressed with people. The most powerful tool for such creative people is other creative people. They best understand the situation. They can help find what’s being overlooked. They can provide experienced advice, sympathy, and also know when to lend a hand to either support or applaud. I’m glad I live in a community of such people.
And, Don, don’t worry about sloppy burgers. I was concentrating on my own flaws and foibles. Imperfections are proof we are human. Celebrate that.