Today’s writer

I was looking into authors’ birthdays for September for another project I’m working on and discovered Shel Silverstein was born in September. He’s one of my favorites, and I often read his work to my kids. I wanted a glimpse of what the man was like outside of the delightful poetry and drawings he put into Where the Sidewalk Ends, and other books. But then I stumbled upon this amazing thought:

“If you want to find out what a writer or a cartoonist really feels, look at his work. That’s enough.”

Shel SilversteinMr. Silverstein passed away in 1999. As I read that quote, I wondered what he’d think of blogs, Facebook, author promotion, and the way writers and other artists have been turned into marketing machines as well as a craftsman assembly line for their products. All in the sake of discoverability.

Apparently to have a chance in today’s market, one must be on all levels of social media, connect with readers, put on a public face, and write one hell of a book several times a year. Daunting to say the least. And after we accomplish all this, don’t forget to have a life.

I’m doing my best to write, occasionally use social media and take care of my family and my health. I appreciate the constant barrage some authors engage in. I know they’re doing their level best to make it in this industry, whether traditionally published or independently.

Amazingly Mr. Silverstein’s been gone for many years now, but his work still speaks for itself. I also think I know something about him by all those messages and themes he sent through his sometimes silly, sometimes thought-provoking poetry and drawings.

“If you want to find out what a writer or a cartoonist really feels, look at his work. That’s enough.”

To discoverability, balance, and writing something so memorable our work does speak for itself.

Happy Monday.