By Andrea Merrell
Have you read my new book? It’s amazing. Look how many contests I’ve won. My blog has more hits than anyone. See how many Facebook and Twitter followers I have. Look at me!
Those are all things we avoid saying and cringe when we hear them from others. No one enjoys a braggart. So then where does that leave us when we’re trying to create a community and build a platform for our projects? We want people to know about us, to support us, to read our blog posts and buy our books.
But when we promote ourselves, is that considered bragging and tooting our own horn?
Some say there’s a fine line between self-promotion and bragging. It’s important for us as writers to find that line. How do we find it? Let’s start by taking a look at our need for approval. We all have it. We crave recognition and even applause for the good things we do. When we don’t get the recognition we feel we deserve, it can lead to self-pity and even resentment. We might see others getting promoted ahead of us and wonder if we will ever have our turn.
So, what’s a writer to do?
I believe it begins with our motive. Why are we writing in the first place? Is it to become famous? To make a lot of money? (Let me say here that if your motivation is money, you’re in the wrong profession … keep your day job. LOL) To give us bragging rights? Or is it because God has called us and given us the gift of words to share with a hurting world?
When we know that we are doing what we do “as unto the Lord,” it humbles us and changes our motivation. If what we write pleases the Lord, that should be all that matters. The praise of men is fickle and fleeting, but God’s approval is genuine and without end.
One writer says when we learn to live this way, knowing we walk under the smile of His approval, it makes us a self-starter and a successful finisher. Our success is not dependent on the praise—or lack thereof—of others.
(Photo courtesy of FreeDigitalPhotos.net and Stuart Miles.)