I love what I do. Taking the merest glimmer of an idea and turning it into a tangible piece of art everyone can enjoy goes beyond descriptors. Researching. Writing. Yes – even the editing piece. All of it is pure love. There is one element, however, I absolutely dread. Marketing. (Yucky. Schmucky. Phooey.)
Don’t get me wrong. I love going to signings and conferences to meet readers. Chatting about books (not just mine) with other aficionados is always a good time. One-on-one. That’s my jam. Standing before a group of strangers, bearing my soul. Not my fav thing. Yet, other authors get up on their podium and kill it. They’re engaging, witty and insightful. As I sit in the audience, I’m usually in a state of awe at their performance.
How do they do it? They look so confident and even behave as if they’re having fun. I want to have fun and I want my audience to have fun too when it’s my turn up there. An idea hit me while I was at the World Horror Convention in Atlanta this year. Which group of creative folks takes a piece of literature and performs it on stage to the delight of an audience? Actors. If I took a few acting workshops, maybe I could learn how to improve my performances and have fun doing it?
I’m fortunate to live in a metro area like Denver. There is a huge theatre and indie film community here. I found a wonderful acting coach. We spent a full hour on one question I’m usually asked: “How did you get into writing?”
Why a full hour? As an actor, she has to dig deep into the meaning of words and motivation. My standard dull reply was challenged. I had to dig deeper. The result? She helped me see my art in a brand new way. It totally turned my point of view on its ear.
I highly recommend you seek out another artist from another art form and discuss your work. Seeing what you do from another creative perspective may surprise and challenge you.