The other day, as I was working on my newest manuscript, an action/adventure conspiracy theory, and fielding some tweets and such, it dawned on me in a way it had never really “reached me” that when you gather a following, you’ve created, well, an extended family. And as with your traditional family, you don’t really want to let your family “down” in anything you do. This includes (in the not-exactly-saving-the-world writer life I live, cause I know some are actually saving lives out there…) blog posts, tweets, responding to e-mails, grippin’-and-grinnin’ out in the “wild,” in public, et cet.
Yeah, I knew this on an intellectual level, but it just kinda hit me in a way that made me shake my head as if hit by a haymaker.
It’s not anywhere near like I’m any kind of a household name, but I do have a growing list of followers…and these people—yes, they’re flesh-and-blood people, not just “followers”—are following me for a reason. Now, sure that reason could be “just” to further their own purposes, and that’s fine, but it’s also because they might have found something of interest in me and my efforts—just like with any of you out there. When each of us clicks that “Follow,” I’m thinking many-to-most of us don’t just do it willy-nilly. That we kinda pick people who do something that interests us or aligns with us in some way. So, the reverse is true. That just hit me in a deeper, Zen-like way the other day.
We’re upholding a “public trust,” of sorts. We all are, those of us who publicly perform anything. And it behooves us to do our best in not letting people down with our efforts. Not discounting our audience. Putting forth our best efforts. Caring about what we put out into the Universe.
And then I thought about my work. Good Lord, what would happen were I to actually sell this series of mine…where people were to buy my efforts and actually want to see more?
Again, intellectually, knew all this. Was just experiencing this idea from another point of view.
And, no, I’m not jumping the gun. Just toying with concepts, as I usually do; finally fully grasping the emotional gravity of “just trying to sell a book.” Cause it’s far more than that—just selling books—about making money. It’s about creating relationships. It’s about
Flesh and blood (you know…as opposed to zombies and all that undead rot—not that I’d turn any of them away, either!)
It’s about not letting anyone down with sub-par efforts. Respecting the readership.
That’s what I felt. A kind of far-reaching feel to everything, of an emotion depth extending out into the world. That everything I feel and do about what I read…each and every one of you do, too. You’re not just a stat number, a mere point-of-purchase drone. You’re a person, with real likes and dislikes, troubles, goals—a life—and you’re taking time out of your day to check me out, see what I’m about. Spend some time reading my words. And I need to respect that.
Perhaps I’m overthinking it, but I respect your choice in following me and I deeply thank each of you. I always promise to put my best effort forward, and I thank you for taking the time out of your day to stop by and read my posts, short stories, or novel.