Today, going through old notes, I came across this advice to myself and thought it was worth sharing to anyone who’s getting ready to promote a book or speak on a panel or make any kind of presentation, really. I think it’s worth sharing:
You need conscious preparation. What you really need is to remember what you’re doing there. You’re representing your book. You’re representing the crowd in the cave who work in the dark. Their future sustenance and shelter depends on you. Don’t let vanity or personal pressures or wanting-to-be-liked or dear god the disaster of trying-to-be-clever block up your mouth. Know what your winners are and use them.
Very useful advice. Like a traditional singer who has to represent the song and not worry about her image or even voice quality. Performing openly demands a relinquishing of vanity, I feel. A big risk is trying to focus on looking modest, apologetic, as if writing at all must be seen as boasting. This does betray the crowd in the cave.
So true – and if only our politicians – especially those over here in our “rogue country” vying to be PM – would act according to these principles.