Is the publishing world a place for introverts? Those who tend to keep to themselves? Shy people who hide away, protect themselves and are most uncomfortable in groups.
Since I know a few people who fit into this category, the question haunts me. I often wonder why they would choose this career. Driven I suppose, driven by talent.
Not long ago, this profession would have protected them from the social media frenzy we’re forced to face today. I mean the publishers were quite happy to have their writers hiding behind the scenes and producing bestsellers if that’s the way life was comfortable for them. I suppose they’d try and force them into doing book signings from time to time, but I’m sure that it was never like the daily grind of peddling your product that we face today.
I know it isn’t easy for introverts used to going it alone. Revealing their thoughts and ideas in the characters of their stories is one thing but having to plug your own talent; well that’s a completely different awfulness. I’m sure putting themselves out there in the virtual world of trolls and meanies, of bloggers with strong opinions and competitors who have no problem using someone else’s back to get to the next step must be horrifying.
It’s possible to hide behind aliases to some extent, that’s true and even maybe smart. But that’s not what I’m talking about, is it?
Revealing one’s inner self in their need to make readers buy their work is the point. Trying to come up with something to say about themselves so a reader wants to get to know them better, that’s the crux of the problem. Enticing and drawing interest is what it’s all about.
Hell, I remember the first time I wrote the book description for My Cheeky Angel. I knew what needed to be said and the only way I could seriously write the glowing advertisement was to pretend it was someone else’s book I was complimenting.
And I’m an extreme extrovert.
But even for me it was really hard, especially at the beginning. We all know the power words one uses to spark interest. Words like fascinating, spellbinding, thrilling, and phrases like fast-paced action and steamy hot romance.
Now telling a friend about someone else’s book, saying it was a fantastic read with great characters is one thing, but trying to flog one’s own creations is a completely different matter.
And according to the marketers and promoters that constantly tell us we need to ramp up descriptions to make the work seem to be a must-read means we have no choice. When we see our competition following these rules, we need to compete. I guess one either has to overcome introverted tendencies or hire someone to do the work instead. It must be so hard…
Do you suffer from this problem?
How do you overcome it?