Self promotion is sticky

I hear it time and time again, “I love creating, but I hate self promotion.” It’s a strange, sad truth that those who have the introverted stamina to sit and make something beautiful in a studio often can’t make a living on the beauty they put forth.

One of my friends makes the most incredible, intricately detailed paper cut creations. They should be selling for hundreds, if not thousands of dollars in a museum. But she says her art is too precious to her to ruin with the stress of trying to sell it. I get that wholeheartedly.

When you’re trying to sell something you have to be careful. You can’t come on too strong, you can’t come on too soft. You can’t have too many opinions about things having nothing to do with your art, but you have to have a voice people want to hear. I find myself curating my thoughts sometimes. There might be something I’m passionate about that I want thousands of people to hear, but then I’ll remind myself that I’m trying to sell a book, and the jobs of my publisher, our income, and my own sanity when the negative comments roll in, are at stake.

I’ve been honest on here about how I have social anxiety. I have it under control now, but there are days when I get thrown back into old patterns of thinking trying to please the world. The other day I was having a lovely time with friends and enjoying every minute, then afterwards collapsed into Beau’s arms and he said, “exhausted by talking to too many people?” Imagine me at 3 in the morning, glancing at my phone to check the time, opening up instagram, and reading 500 comments!

I posted a picture of my journal this week, then got nervous people were tired of my self promotion and deleted it. I posted a picture of a robin I made, then got nervous it wasn’t good enough and deleted it. I posted a couple pictures from the tv show I was on, then got nervous and deleted it. Then I had a phone conversation with publicity at Sasquatch and she said I could reveal the cover of my next book and I got so nervous about how it didn’t match the other posts I had done that day and would throw off the look and feel of my instagram page that I had a stomach ache the rest of the day.

There’s no good answer for any of this. I just needed to take a moment to write it out. Hey…if you need to write something out you should buy my journal.  It’s on sale at Amazon!

^that’s a joke in case you couldn’t tell. I mean, I know you can, but I got really nervous about how you might not get it.

^that’s also a joke.

3 thoughts on “Self promotion is sticky

  1. My dear Bridget, your creative work is worth promoting. Blessings on your head and in your mind and on your heart!!

  2. I absolutely can relate to all of this! Having tried to sell art, ( and stopped because of exactly these same thoughts and feelings. ) I’m still in the trap of self promotion as a dancer and yoga teacher now that I’m freelancing to fit in with motherhood ( used to just rely on agent and long term contracts on tour etc ) and every other week I’m getting anxiety over it! The one thing that gets me driven again is my tots little face and growing babybump and I realise I have to swallow my pride and doubts and keep putting myself out into the world as Id rather be judged for what I love doing than have to watch life pass me and my family by due to fear! X your work is so so beautiful! And your principles are too! That is part of what makes you the artist you are! Xx

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