Archives for the month of: April, 2015

KensingtonMural

Nietzsche said, “The essence of all beautiful art, all great art, is gratitude.”

Who’s gratitude was he referring to?

I write quite a few book reviews and it’s not uncommon for the author to comment on what I’ve said. Invariably they say thank you if the review is positive, and they apologize if I don’t like their book.

Is that the appropriate response?

Even if your book is poorly written but you’ve been honest and done your best isn’t that a remarkable feat?

What you’ve done is taken nothing and from your own wit and imagination created something. No one gave you a recipe, a blueprint or any type of plan beyond perhaps some suggestions, most of which you probably ignored.

How many other achievements in your life rank up there with writing a book? It’s not an accident of biology, the manifestation of greed, or the manipulation of public opinion. No one promised you unconditional love, wealth or fame and power.

And yet you’ve considered this project for years and labored for hundreds of hours on it.

You’re proud of your accomplishment and so you should be.

Why then do you thank someone when they offer a few crumbs of praise? Worse yet, why do you apologize when they’re critical of your accomplishment?

A more appropriate response from the reader or critic might be:

“Thank you for writing this book. I appreciate your commitment and the time you put into this worthy endeavor. Unfortunately, I didn’t enjoy it (or the opposite) and here’s why.”

Your response should be, “You’re welcome,” or none at all.

Does it matter if people read your book? Does it matter if they liked it or didn’t like it? Does their opinion diminish the act of creativity?

I think it’s time to stop apologizing, time to stop being embarrassed for being a creator.

It’s time to look them in the eye and say, “I’m a writer and no my books don’t sell. Do you have a problem with that?”

Well, maybe it’s not time for that just yet.

Stay calm, be brave, watch for the signs

30

 

My new novels, FOREST – Love, Loss, Legend and The BIG PICTURE – A Camera, A Young Woman, An Uncompromising Ethic are available as e-books or paperbacks on Amazon http://www.amazon.com/-/e/B003DS6LEU and as e-books at https://www.smashwords.com/profile/view/raglin

Read Reviews https://readersfavorite.com:book-review:39014

Visit my publisher’s website for excerpts from, and buy links to my Eco-Fi series ECO-WARRIORS, that includes Spirit Bear, Eagleridge Bluffs, and Not Wonder More – Mad Maggie and the Mystery of the Ancients http://www.devinedestinies.com/?route=product%2Fauthor&author_id=92

More of my original photographs can be viewed, purchased, and shipped to you as GREETING CARDS; matted, laminated, mounted, framed, or canvas PRINTS; and POSTERS. Go to: http://www.redbubble.com/people/rodraglin

View my flickr photostream at https://www.flickr.com/photos/78791029@N04/

Or, My YouTube channel if you prefer photo videos accompanied by classical music

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCsQVBxJZ7eXkvZmxCm2wRYA

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LucasRain_0034It’s been 28 days since I had my last hit of analytics.

The first two weeks were tough. Time and again I had to restrain myself from taking “just a little peek” to see where my stats were at. The urge to check my emails more than twice a day left me anxious and twitchy. On occasion when I unconsciously clicked on a  site with stats  I would avert my eyes until I had closed the program, then wait two minutes until my breathing returned to normal.

Prior to “going on the wagon” my first impulse when I sat down at the computer had been to check how many impressions my last tweet got, new page views on Smashwords, or my author ranking on Amazon. Now, in my state of recovery, I would sit and wonder what to do.

What I did was write.

In the last four weeks I produced:

– three book reviews,

– completed a short story of 6600 words,

– started another short story and am 2800 words into it,

– added 11,651 words to my new novel The Widower (wip),

– posted two blogs,

­­ – posted 19 new photos to flickr,

– tweeted 22 times

I think this represents about twice the productivity of the previous month.

Did I miss anything? Was there a statistic, a message, or a trend I overlooked that could have changed the course of my career (what career you ask, which may be the point)?

No.

Did my sales decrease? No, but then there were none in the previous month so how could they? Unless you can you have negative sales? Now there’s a depressing thought.

But more importantly, did anything positive come out of my swearing off analytics for a month?

Yes.

I was productive. I created something. I was more content. I didn’t waste time on statistics that mean nothing, because in the end there is only one stat that matter’s – sales.

Statistics and every other kind of analytics are just another source of delusion giving the impression that something is happening when in fact it isn’t.

So how do you make it happen?

I have no idea.

So I’m going to try to accept the things I cannot change, find the courage to change the things I can and go back to the writing, and hope in some infinite wisdom, that has nothing to do with statistics and analytics, it will make a difference.

Stay calm, be brave, watch for the signs

 

30

 

My new novels, FOREST – Love, Loss, Legend and The BIG PICTURE – A Camera, A Young Woman, An Uncompromising Ethic (now in paperback) are available on Amazon http://www.amazon.com/-/e/B003DS6LEU and at https://www.smashwords.com/profile/view/raglin

Read Reviews https://readersfavorite.com:book-review:39014

Visit my publisher’s website for excerpts from, and buy links to, my three novels, Spirit Bear, Eagleridge Bluffs, and Not Wonder More – Mad Maggie and the Mystery of the Ancients (now in paperback). http://www.devinedestinies.com/?route=product%2Fauthor&author_id=92

More of my original photographs can be viewed, purchased, and shipped to you as GREETING CARDS; matted, laminated, mounted, framed, or canvas PRINTS; and POSTERS. Go to: http://www.redbubble.com/people/rodraglin

View my flickr photostream at https://www.flickr.com/photos/78791029@N04/

Or, My YouTube channel if you prefer photo videos accompanied by classical music

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCsQVBxJZ7eXkvZmxCm2wRYA

 

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