At times, the parallels between art and business can be somewhat startling. Many a novelist balks at the idea of stepping out of their comfort zone. It is not good enough any longer to presume you will be a success. Talent, quite simply, is not enough.
Like any business, you sell, hustle, innovate and frequently face rejection. You study your market and endeavour to find a route to that market. Your words are a product that are sold and must be deserving of the customers attention. There are a multitude of books that have merit, but what good is merit without a marketing plan?
Writers trade on energy, not budgets. In the digital age we are traversing a changing technological landscape. Like any other business we are finding our way. Algorithms, keywords, social media are a language we have to master and to neglect these vital areas, are to court failure.
We are also masters on one. That one is the writer but within our mindset lays a multitude of personalities; those personalities can be the same as the staff any business has to manage – here’s why. We procrastinate, we’re late, we’re brilliant, we shine, we fail, we flounder and the accumulation of the positive can yield results that are – on a good day – stratospheric.
We are the Managing Directors of our worse and best traits. We manage the good and bad days and treat them with ingrained habits we have developed over a lifetime.
Whether those habits are good or bad will determine our destiny.
Consistency is key. Inspiration is temporary. Behaviour is constructed; if the foundations are wide and deep that very construct that good behaviour is built on, will weather any storm; be that financial of creative.
I was heralded as a ‘crime writing name for the future’ – problem was that date in the future wasn’t specific. Success should make you work harder, innovate incessantly and embrace the changes that are surely coming your way. The blurred lines of commerce apply to all…in any vocation.
Is this advice for the artist or the entrepreneur? What do you think?
Jonathan Dunne is a Dublin Crime Novelist
Click here for more information on his book