If you're a #writer, I encourage you to read this short blog and take a minute to consider @BenTanzer's questions seriously. How often do we give ourselves permission (or have the courage) to envision the gifts we'd like our writing to offer the world. Dream big, my friends. https://t.co/iOXq8MmuWj— Jill (@JMcJohnson) February 20, 2018
As of late I find myself engaged in a range of cool activities, many book and lit related, some of which involve book promotion, publicity, and creative strategy. I'm excited about all of these opportunities and how inspired I feel about both all of the ways to think about them and all of the people who want to do so. I am especially inspired at the moment though by an article I just read in Poets&Writers titled "The Art of Publicity: How Indie Publicists Work With Writers." There's lots of good stuff in this piece, but I was, and remain, particularly struck by the following quote by the publicist Lauren Cerand: "What do you want that you don’t have?" I love this frame, and I plan to ask not only every author and every publisher I work with this question henceforth, but anyone I work with on anything. "What do you want that you don’t have?" I think it's everything and it leads me to ask you the following: Do you know what you want that you don't have? And then, do you want help figuring it out or trying to make it happen if/when you do? Please let me know, any, or all of it. I'm really interested. Also, some excerpt below. Enjoy.
"I had naively imagined that publicity was something a publicist just did, a process that involved ticking off the boxes in a list of already established steps for success. Cerand immediately encourages me to think otherwise. “I always ask writers, ‘What do you want that you don’t have?’ And I ask my writers to name not only, say, prizes, but also the principles behind the recognition they want,” she says. “There’s an idea that everyone wants to be successful in the same way, but that’s not true. You might be a food writer who wants to change the way we talk about how we eat, or a poet whose dream is to have your poems on the subway.” Cerand leans into each specific vision, using it to drive a campaign. “What I aim for is a sense of ubiquity, an electric jolt of familiarity and intrigue that appears over and over through media, through experiences, through the way that the authors themselves express their art in the world.” Put simply, Cerand is after more than just book reviews: She’s hoping to create the conditions under which the artist’s practice becomes visible to a wider audience."