One of my common responses to students who ask the names of my books is that I don’t want to be accused of trying to sell said books in the school environment. Although it’s never happened and I don’t believe the likelihood is substantial, it’s an example of my reluctance to inappropriately self-promote.
With that in mind, I often ponder how much publication of my work is judicious and how much is excessive. There are no rules, no barometers, no panel of wise judges to issue directives. Very often I see people on social media or local publications who frequently display their services or products, often with the qualification that they are passionate about what they do. With that prevalent practice, why do I refrain from what I call shameless self-propagandizing?
Of course, it’s never a competition. Who’s published the most books, who has the most followers and who has the most clients? To me and every other writer I know, measuring success is quite individual and personal. As for how much publicity of my craft is enough and how much is too much, there are no lightning bolts of wisdom that are available.
Maybe its origins are from my childhood. From an early age, I was taught that it’s not “nice” to blow your own horn. That directive has never left me. But the other side of that is what may be insufficient clients or accolades for my writing. And who has the responsibility for that? My view of life prevents me from blaming the outside world. But if we don’t enjoy success, popularity or financial security, is it our fault for insufficient promotion?
Somewhere I read that there were well over one million books published in the year that I released mine. Looking at the statistics, very few make the New York Times bestseller list. Is anything short of that acceptable? It must be. When I ponder the reasons for which I wrote the book, none of them were financial or critical popularity.
Someone much wiser than I once said, “You get what you give” and I was content that I told my story as a collection of suggestions for life. Having accomplished that, it may simply be unfair to ask for more. Shalom.