Just a week away from the release of Becoming Magic, my new kind of romance in which I attempt to prove real heroes are not the dark, brooding macho men of old.
Just a week away from the part I hate—promotion. Literally, the worst part for someone like me. I’m a hermit. I live in my office with my little dog and my cats. It’s my happy place.
Cormac McCarthy sold books for forty years without ever doing a television interview. Emily Dickinson wrote her amazing body of poetry while secluded in her family home—literally lowering baskets from windows for packages and speaking to visitors through doors. Of course, the largest part of her work was discovered after her death…
And then there is William Faulkner, who famously shunned public speaking, but should have spoken out more, as evidenced by his Nobel Prize Speech:
The poet’s, the writer’s, duty is to write about these things. It is his privilege to help man endure by lifting his heart, by reminding him of the courage and honor and hope and pride and compassion and pity and sacrifice which have been the glory of his past.
Yes, writers are reclusive. We prefer to sit at our desks and tap away at our computers. But in today’s world of technology and television and Netflix, it’s up to us—the writers and poets—to seek out new ways to do what Faulkner charged us to do: To remind human beings that there is more to us than our exterior shells show—we have heart and soul and history to prove it. And that means promotion because like the proverbial tree with no listeners, there’s not much point to a book with no readers.