Many authors write books in hopes of making it big – movies, best-sellers, and a series of books. Others write books because they believe passionately about their subject matter and want to share a message that enlightens, inspires, informs, and educates others. But all authors write, I believe, because it is their gift and curse, because if they didn’t express themselves artistically they’d kill someone or themselves. Or go insane.
I have never met a writer who doesn’t enjoy his craft and the opportunity to share ideas, experiences, opinions and stories. I went to a book party recently for my client, Howard Schatz, who has put together an amazing photography book called At the Fights. It was at this literary gathering that I came to understand what drives writers and artists to relentlessly pursue their craft.
You see, an author or photographer never really rests or remains at ease with his or her work. They continually seek to improve and perfect their artistry. They cannot be satisfied but for a moment otherwise their entire drive will be at risk. They don’t have to be perfectionists but they strive for an achievement that feels like perfection, ever elusive and always being redefined so that even if one reaches a state of perfection, he or she has now set the bar higher for themselves.
Photographers and writers observe life and reflect it in their work, but many fail to really see themselves or obtain an honest measure of the role they play in the world.
It is a burden to be creative, but it can also be so rewarding. I don’t know if Howard can see what he’s accomplished, or even be willing to acknowledge it, but he can be proud that he’s achieved a lifetime of work in just the past two decades. He has published 19 books and had images splashed across magazine covers. He is always challenging himself and pushing his limits. I applaud his relentless pursuit to get to some undefined, ever-moving target that may seem like perfection for a moment. He may never get there. He’s more at ease in chasing the top, the ideal, the gold – for he wouldn’t know what to do if someone told him that he’s reached the top of the mountain.
So who am I to say he’s done it all? Perhaps there is more to be done and we’re not even close to seeing his best work. But I know that even when he arrives at that holy moment, he will already have his eye on the next big thing. He wouldn’t have it any other way.
Brian Feinblum’s views, opinions, and ideas expressed in this blog are his alone and not that of his employer, the nation’s largest book promoter. You can follow him on Twitter @theprexpert and email him at email@example.com. He feels more important when discussed in the third-person. This blog is copyrighted material by BookMarketingBuzzBlog 2012 ©