Arguments Worth Having

Art = Absurdity = Provocation = Contemplation = Wisdom = Love

I hope you won’t mind if I now try to sell you my first book!

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Self-Promotion:  Artists need to promote, it’s part of the business, and publishers/editors/literary magazines/peers often solicit, whether The New Yorker or a college journal. Nevertheless, there are right ways and wrong ways to promote.

My Response:

Hi Exxxx:

Thanks for this, promotion is a lot of work, and the artist must promote promote promote. Since you’re the one soliciting here are my thoughts.

You’re a good writer, and your story a compelling and well drawn examination of desperation in the face of expectations of marriage and parenthood, told with dramatic flair.

Yet I’m of the mind art projects must sell on their own merit, and rise above the competition. There are so many writers trying to sell books, me included, but participating in the “you-buy-my-book-and-I’ll-buy-yours” carousel usually becomes an end game. Getting friends and family support means just that. Rarely does it help attain the goal.

That being said, making friendly acquaintances with peers, artists supporting artists and promoting one another, does help, even if only in small increments. When you do have a book you’ll have a network for soliciting reviews and publicity. Your journalism career seems to be flourishing and that’s an excellent platform.

On my end, I’m jaded on the promotion game. Forgive my cynicism. There are so many artists asking for money for their “projects.” My policy is that I don’t give or ask for money. But I sometimes buy books of my peers if they can’t get their publisher to send a review copy my way.

That being said, I hope we can continue our acquaintance, and I’ll definitely follow your writing and say a good word on your behalf.



The Result?  Unfriended and blocked.

Written by Caleb Powell

May 30, 2017 at 8:37 am

Posted in Art

Tagged with ,

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