Ruminating On: Public Image

I do very little in the way of self promotion when compared to some. In fact, the only time I really make a push on Facebook and Twitter is when I’m doing a free promotion. I post about guest blogs and interviews I’m involved with, but other than that, I pretty much just go with the flow. I do not think I am better than those that constantly plug their work. I’m just not that guy.

I’ve said more than once that I’d be perfectly happy giving my work away for free. There are several reasons for this—the main one being that I understand not everyone can afford entertainment with the way this economy is. I don’t publish my work to pay the bills, I do it because other people have bills to pay and they deserve an escape. One of the final bastions of free entertainment is your local library. If you don’t have a card, go down and get one. That place isn’t just for children. Amazon is doing amazing things with free books, but they can only offer free material for a limited time—unless, of course, you choose that loophole known as price matching. Amazon, at the end of the day, is a company that needs to make money to survive. They have been nothing but gracious to me in the past, so I choose not to set my independently published books on Smashwords for free just so Amazon will price match it. So, for those of you wondering why you can’t find any of my Indie published books on Smashwords, you now have your explanation.

I’m no saint, as many of you already know, but I would like to be remembered as an author that cared what his readers thought. Some of the opinions expressed on this blog have chased more than a few souls away and I respect their right to ignore me. But, I think I’ve come to that point in my career where I realize that my current public image could be my downfall. I’m not saying you will never hear me rant and rave ever again, only that there needs to be a little growth on my part if I am to ever reach the number of readers that I covet. I’m not ignorant enough to believe that everyone will always like me. The content in my books is abrasive and not for the faint of heart. I realize that I will offend when I don’t mean to and run people away even when I offer them sweets I deem fit for consumption.

I believe in me and I would like for you to as well. I have only just begun my creative journey. To have everyone of you join me would be an honor. I will do my best to offer you an escape from everyday life; to bring forth your tears and laughter and gasps of breath in reaction to my words seems an apt way to live out my years. But I need something from you in return. I need to know that you’re reading. I wrote long before I had any need to publish. I did it for fun, and I would like to keep it that way. I’m not talking about pats on the back or constant quotes of “E, you’re amazing!” I only wish that you would drop me a line telling me whether or not you enjoyed the story. This doesn’t have to be in review form, nor does it have to be positive. I only ask that you tell me exactly what I did wrong in your eyes. Moreover, I want to know what I did right. I want to be that author you can talk to without worrying about whether or not his head has swollen too large or his ego has become too imposing. I know everyone following this blog supports me, but I thought I would send this out to those who are maybe stumbling upon me for the first time. I’d like to make this blog a little more personal than it already is—a way for me to get to know my readers and for them to get to know me.

On a side note, even though I love reading new work, please do not send me your unpublished manuscript for review. There are legalities involved and I don’t need any trouble. Thank you for understanding.

In closing, if I ever let you down, tell me about it. If I ever leave you feeling unfulfilled after that final page, email me and let’s talk about it. I will completely understand if you say it just wasn’t your thing. I do it all the time when I read.

Well, that was quite different…

E.

 

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6 thoughts on “Ruminating On: Public Image

  1. Whiskey Tango Foxtrot!!!! Who are you, and what have you done with Ed?!?!

    LOL. Just kidding. Seriously, don’t sound so freaking tentative. You’re evolving – both as a writer, and as a hoomin beein’. Embrace the change, amigo. And if it doesn’t fit, you’ll change again later. 😉

    1. If anything, Edward is more in control now, and E. is a fading reminder that change, though not always enjoyed, will always come. If I am to take over the world, I must first be a ruler people want. 😉

  2. avcarden

    Edward, I always used to call you Edward, because to me that’s who you are. You are a really lovely person and it’s clear you are a wonderful husband and father too. I don’t mean to be over familiar but you are also a great friend. I like the fact you speak your mind and tell it how it is but I see where your coming from in what you say. Don’t change too much! I love your work and I can’t wait to read Dastardly Bastard which I am downloading as I speak. You’ve always been very kind to me and I won’t forget that. 🙂

  3. I have no idea if we will ever run into each other outside of cyberspace (does anyone say “cyberspace” anymore??), but I bet we’d have a great conversation. I understand the difficulty involved in charging for the books we would have written anyways. I would make mine free, but the publication process itself is not free, and I’m not made of money. Or, I assume I am not. I have not peered into my guts to know for sure. Wouldn’t that be something, to find out I’m actually made of money? I’m veering away from the topic. Probably because it is a Big Topic, and one that scares me. Public image, the blurring of art with business, the uncertainty of not knowing if anyone is even reading what we write – all huge topics. I hope you know that I read your works, I enjoy your posts, and I hope that you will find a comfortable balance between authenticity and sagacity in crafting your public image.

    -aniko

  4. I think the word “cyberspace” is dead, Aniko, but I won’t hold it against you. The costs of publishing is one of the main reasons I went with a publisher. You’re 100% correct in that publishing is an expensive venture. I went through it with Bay’s End and I will be going through it again with my short story collection coming later this year.

    By the way, next time you comment, bring a dictionary with you so I can peruse it. I’m man enough to admit I’ve never heard or read the word “sagacity” and had to look it up. Hehehe…

    Thank you again for dropping by. You keep me on my toes.

    E.

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